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Incorporated Engineer (IEng)

Abhijeet Acharya MSc BTech IEng MIET MAPM

Published: 20/09/2023

Education and Qualifications:
MSc Project Management, Roehampton University, UK
BTech Instrumentation Engineering, Madras Institute of Technology, India

Job title:
Manager, Instrument and Control Engineering

Petrofac, Sharjah, UAE





What inspired you to become an engineer or pointed you towards an engineering career?
Ever since I was a child, I wanted to become an engineer. I was especially curious about knowing how electrical and electronic devices work, and as a young boy I often opened electronic devices at home and tried to figure out the electronic circuits. My aptitude for mathematics and physics helped me get admission into a bachelors degree course in engineering. Throughout the course, I learned about measurement and process control using the latest smart technologies, which helped me to pursue an engineering career in the process industry.

Please describe your role or position within your workplace.
As a lead engineer, I work with a vibrant and multicultural team of engineers striving to deliver   complex and large projects within the energy sector. I get the opportunity to work on different types of projects which could be a feasibility study, front end design and engineering or engineering, procurement and construction. More recently, I am working on a co2 capture, utilisation and storage  project for a large client.  I am responsible for the design development, procurement engineering, and technical evaluation and I maintain good working relationships with key stakeholders, such as clients, consultants, and vendors. I also participate in technical peer reviews and design optimisation studies.

Can you describe a typical working day?
My typical working day involves progress review meetings and follow-ups on engineering deliverables that must be delivered according to the agreed schedule. I regularly engage in interdisciplinary discussions to find solutions to technical issues in a project. I also have meetings and discussions with my team members to review work progress, to plan, and to delegate new responsibilities.

Are there any particular challenges or unusual aspects to your role?
Identifying and incorporating a design change is challenging in a complex project environment where some engineering activities may occur in parallel instead of in sequential order. As a lead engineer, we must implement effective change management strategies throughout the project life cycle, from the design, to construction and commissioning of the project. Also, time management is another critical aspect in an increasingly dynamic environment where multiple activities may occur simultaneously.

What do you find most enjoyable about your job?
Every project has a different scope and different geographic conditions. While working on these projects, I learn new things, interact with new people, and come across new challenges.

Is there a great professional achievement or high-profile accomplishment that you would like to tell us about?
The professional achievement of my career so far has been successfully delivering some of the mega oil and gas projects in the Middle East region as an engineering professional. Working on these projects helped me develop core technical and project management skills and enabled me to apply these skills in contributing to project success.

What contributed to your decision to become professionally registered?
Having spent several years in the engineering profession, I wanted to become registered with an international professional body to receive recognition for my technical knowledge, competence, professional integrity and commitment to my work. Also, I knew that having professionally registered engineers would be a significant advantage for my employer as they can use that to showcase their engineering capabilities.

In what ways has registration benefitted your career? How does your employer benefit from your professional registration?
Professional registration provides evidence that I am a qualified and competent engineer. This is an advantage to my employer when bidding for future projects, as clients often specify the requirement of professionally registered engineers for their projects.

Is there any advice you would pass on to someone considering professional registration?
I would advise future candidates to review the competence requirements in the UK Standard for Professional Engineering Competence (UK-SPEC) and to provide the most relevant evidence from their work experience. Also, during the professional review interview, give evidence to support competences related to a) knowledge and understanding and b) design, development, and solving engineering problems. 

Where do you see yourself in your career in five years’ time or what are your future ambitions?
I aspire to become a project manager within the energy transition domain in the next five years. With the emergence of renewable energy solutions such as biomethane, carbon capture and storage, and offshore wind development, I look forward to learning and contributing to these areas.

Outside work, is there any activity you enjoy doing in your spare time that relates to engineering? For example, do you participate in mentoring, volunteering or membership of other engineering groups?
As a member of the Association for Project Management (APM) in the UK, I have written blogs on contemporary project management relating to sustainable development and carbon management topics. I have also published several articles in peer-reviewed journals on energy transition challenges, which include carbon pricing, green hydrogen development, community energy, and biogas from waste.