Success Stories

Name
  Jake Jensen
  My current position at Ajax is 1st shift Production Lead. My role here is to make sure that all of my colleagues in Production have the right knowledge and necessary resources to have a hassle free work day. I coordinate the job distribution at the beginning of the day – determining what jobs and machines each colleague will be running. I follow up on a regular basis with each colleague to ensure that they have everything needed to have a safe and productive work day. This includes signing off on tool set ups, finding out what jobs are next on the agenda for each machine, and helping troubleshoot any tooling issues.
Parts Produced
  I work with account managers and part programmers to resolve issues with parts and insure that they meet our customers’ expectations.
Education and Training
  In the summer of 2015 I attended the M-Power course with 3 of my colleagues. This was the first formal out of work training that I had attended. It was a great introductory course to really understand all of the basics of everything I was doing. From Spring 2016 to Winter 2017 I completed online courses for my apprenticeship program alongside some of my colleagues. I became the 1st shift Lead in March of 2019 and quickly began attending seminars and 1 day courses to ensure that I was knowledgeable enough to take care of whatever situation may arise. In July of 2019, I completed a eight-class management course at the Manufactures Alliance to receive my management certification.
Why Ajax
  Before I began at Ajax, I worked temporary jobs to just make ends meet. I hadn’t quite found a job yet that I could build a career on. My father is good friends and former colleagues with the HR director at the time, Curt Jasper. He had recently ran into him at an event and asked Curt what Ajax was all about. My father directed me to Ajax through Curt and I had toured the plant a week later. They both knew that I was looking for a good place to start a career, and Ajax seemed like a great place to begin that journey. I started at the bottom, a 2nd shift entry level position. I was ready to learn anything and everything that I could. Now, five years later, I’m in a very good position here at Ajax through hard work and consistency.
Advice
  The 3 pieces of advice that i would give to any person who is considering a career in metal forming would be:
1. Anything that you do, make sure you do it to the best of your ability and in a timely manner. The image that you create of yourself is largely dependent on how you convey these two things. Give your best effort and always be on time.
2. Start working at a career as soon as possible. Don’t just look for a job that pays the bills, look for a career that you can move up in that genuinely interests you.
3. Take any opportunities to learn, especially through schooling, that you can. Even if it doesn’t directly benefit you, take courses and classes to further your education. I’ve been fortunate enough to be in a position at Ajax where schooling and classes are always available. Take any opportunities that you can!
Name
  Tiffany Schlueter
Position Description
  I’m the go-to person who knows the automated spotwelder from front to back.  I’m also the main welder in the shop. I’ve run the drill, punch press, brake presses, large saws and the CNC Haas mill.
Parts Produced
  * I weld and spot weld thousands of parts for transport refrigeration units.
* I’ve welded numerous items around the shop; many tables, scrap bins and a large scrap rack.
* I weld hardware onto parts we make for heating and cooling systems.
* I’ve produced fire extinguisher containers that go inside building walls.
* I’ve also produced rod latches that close and open doors on various parts.
Education and Training
  * I graduated the Ajax apprenticeship program, completing 2,000 hours of on-the-job training and 300 hours of outside schooling at colleges and also online courses. I am now a class A journeyworker.  Classes includes the M-powered program, and the Manufactures Alliance seminars.
* I’ve also spoke at an Apprenticeship Summit about my experiences as a metal forming journeyworker.
Why Ajax
  * I didn’t need experience and they are willing to train.
* Ajax will pay for your schooling, making it easy to earn while learn!
* Proud to say I’m the only grandkid to follow in my Grandpa’s footsteps. He built machines like the ones I operate.
* It’s a set schedule. And most of all, it’s not retail!
Advice
  * You can earn while you learn!
* You’re able to show your friends and family the parts that you make out in the real world.
* It’s fun yet challenging.
* Try it! Your schooling is paid for and no experience is needed.
Name
  Vixay Thao
Position Description
   I operate the Open Back Incline (O.B.I.) punch press, including the 60-Ton, 45-Ton, and 42 Ton. I also operate the straight side press that runs single hit tools, compound, and progressive tools.
Parts Produced
  I’ve produced auxiliary power units (APUs) for transportation vehicles, shelving brackets, tube with rollers for drawers, fire extinguisher cabinets, and many other metal formed parts.
Education and Training
  I’ve attended multiple classes to learn about many different types of punch press. The classroom learning has thought me the correct use of each component and how it operates inside the press. I have learned how Full Revolution and Part Revolution Punch Presses are different. I learned how to run/setup different tools in different machines, such as O.B.I and Straight Side presses. Learned how to safely start a coil through progressive tools and adjusting correct shut height to produced quality parts. And I’ve learned the safest ways to operate all machinery and work in a fast-paced manufacturing environment.
Why Ajax
  Ajax’s facility is bright, very clean, and a good environment to work in. I been to other facilities before I got the job here, and it does not compare to Ajax. The biggest aspect I like about Ajax is they are really big on safety.  Ajax has been a Star Tribune Top Workplace for five consecutive years.The people here are friendly and always willing to help you solve any problems you might have.
Advice
  * Keep a positive attitude
* Work safely (Safety is not everything it’s the only thing!)
* Take advantage of Ajax’s paid workforce development programs.