Show Form

News search

News Menu:

Sign up to our Engage eNewsletter

Engineering Technicians (EngTech)

Rachael Hart EngTech MICE

Published: 05/06/2024

Education and qualifications:
Building Information Modelling (BIM) Professional, BSI (Pending)
BDes Hons Interior Design, University of Ulster

Job title:
Senior Civil Engineering Technician

Design ID Consulting Ltd.





What/who inspired you to become an engineer? 
I was inspired by my colleagues. When I started as a 3D Visualizer, the directors, and senior engineers I worked with showcased an incredible level of knowledge and a passionate approach to their work. It was contagious. Design ID held regular lunch and learn sessions, immersing me in engineering principles and motivating me to dive deeper into the field.

Please describe your role within the workplace. 
I work as part of the modular team, where I collaborate closely with the structural team to develop work packages, focusing on design exercises for the external elements. I also train team members in Computer-aided design (CAD) skills and quality assurance procedures. My passion for high-quality work led me to get training in Building Information Modelling (BIM). I now take a more active role in BIM coordination in projects where we have a more leading role.

What is the most challenging aspect of your role? 
The most challenging aspect of my role is gaining buy-in for quality processes. Budget constraints often push for rapid project completion, risking inconsistencies in quality and coordination. I focus on improving communication across all parties to identify potential issues early, and I find that a proactive approach ensures smoother coordination and reduces errors.

What is the most enjoyable aspect of your role? 
The most enjoyable aspect of my role is tackling diverse challenges every day. I thrive on problem-solving, whether it's designing creative solutions or prioritising multiple projects to meet deadlines efficiently. The constant variety keeps the work exciting. I also enjoy helping colleagues enhance their skills, raising the bar for the quality of our team's output.

What is the biggest career highlight or achievement you’re most proud of? 
My biggest career achievement is earning my Engineering Technician (EngTech) qualification. It felt daunting at first, and I hesitated for a long time, but taking the leap was incredibly rewarding. It signifies my commitment to engineering and my willingness to embrace new challenges. It’s a tangible representation of my passion for my work and my desire to continually improve.

Why did you choose to become professionally registered? 
I chose to become professionally registered to challenge myself and expand my opportunities. Professional registration shows my commitment to the industry and my interest in mentoring the next generation. Through this I can contribute to industry events like EngTech workshops and Technician Teabreaks, fostering a positive industry attitude towards technicians.

I would recommend professional registration because… 
I recommend professional registration because it signifies that you take your role seriously and are passionate about delivering quality work. The post-nominals demonstrate your ability to meet industry standards in both knowledge and experience, instilling confidence in your capabilities. Registration also allows you to track your progress and provides access to mentorship for continuous guidance and support.

What career advice would you give to your younger self? 
Don't compare yourself to others. Each person's career path is unique, and everyone has their own strengths. The industry needs skilled technicians just as much as it needs engineers. Not having an engineering degree doesn't define your worth. Your passion and ability are what truly matter, so trust in your skills and keep learning.

Do you participate in mentoring, volunteering, or membership of other engineering groups?
I actively participate in mentoring, volunteering, and industry group memberships. I guide apprentices as part of my daily work and am registered with 'Women in BIM' and 'nima' (previously known as the UK BIM Alliance) to promote BIM knowledge. I also volunteer my time with Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE), giving presentations on topics like ‘The Role of an Engineering Technician’ and ‘Construct Innovate Webinar Series: Digital Construction Technologies.’ I'm currently applying to be the Technician Representative on the ICE Northern Ireland Committee, to further my commitment to the engineering community.

If relevant, please list three favourite projects you have worked on:
Three projects I am proud of include Swan Park Bridge Rehabilitation, Crossrail, and Bolands Quay.

  • Swan Park Bridge Rehabilitation was significant because it deeply involved the local community, and I was responsible for designing safe and compliant access while avoiding a complete bridge replacement. I produced the complete construction drawing package for this project.
  • Crossrail was complex, offering a steep learning curve when I worked on levels design at a station entrance.
  • Bolands Quay was a structural project and one of my first as a technician, teaching me a lot about information review and self-checking.

Do you identify as disabled, or as a member of a minority or under-represented group? Would you like to comment on what impact or influence you feel this has had upon your career? 
Being a woman in the engineering profession often means dealing with underrepresentation. It can be daunting to be the only female on site, but it also fosters a stronger sense of community among women in engineering. This challenge has inspired me to connect with groups like 'Women in BIM' and learn from leading industry experts. Given that women make up only 14% of the engineering workforce, I'm motivated to help attract more young women into the field.