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Richard Passmore

Published: 12/09/2017
Route: Accredited degree

Name: Richard Passmore IEng MIMechE
Age: 31
Education and qualifications: MSc Mechanical Engineering,
BSc Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering
Which Institution are you a member of? Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE)
Current job title: Plant Engineer
Company: Tata Steel UK
Length in current job: 4 Years
Approximately how many staff are employed by your company?  4,000+
Where are you based? Port Talbot 

Please describe your current role
In my role as Plant Engineer my key responsibilities are ensuring the reliability and improvement of three continuous casting machines with an annual production volume of 4 million tonnes. This includes all the associated process safety, budgetary and legislative requirements. 

What spurred you to progress towards registration as an Incorporated Engineer (IEng)?
It was part of my longer term career progression plan. I used the standards set out in the UK Standard for Engineering Competence (UK-SPEC), alongside my company competency profiles, to identify knowledge gaps and create opportunities for improvement and continuous development. Applying for registration as an IEng was a natural progression once I had moved into a Manufacturing / Plant Engineer role. My responsibilities had become greater, my level of understanding was higher and I was able to apply the academic knowledge from my BSc to supplement my practical experiences. There was also a sense of pride in progressing further as a professionally registered engineer.  

Describe your experience of how you became an IEng
My employer supported me by sponsoring my application, I also had support from my Institution through their network of Business Development Managers (BDM). My local BDM came to Tata Steel to promote the benefits of professional registration and gave us advice and support on filling in our applications. 

I believe that in engineering, the best approach is to show you have sound academic and theoretical knowledge, which is supported by strong practical understanding and experience. This is how I approached my journey to professional registration, ensuring my practical understanding and experience evolved at the same rate as my academic knowledge. Registration was not something to be rushed. I submitted my application when I was confident that I was competent in all the requirements laid out in UK-SPEC. A controlled, disciplined approach to improving my experience and knowledge meant that I was able to achieve IEng registration. 

What advice would you give someone considering professional registration as an IEng?
Becoming professionally registered as an IEng is an achievement. It shows that you are able and responsible for adhering to engineering principles, standards and ethics to a high level.