Ben Brooks

Electrical Engineer

"I have worked on many prestigious projects which range from underground stations in Asia to world-renowned football stadiums here in London."

Why did you choose Mott MacDonald?

I decided to follow my father’s footsteps by entering the building services engineering world. My father recommended Mott MacDonald as a lead consultancy whom develop its staff and provide a high degree of job security. Not only this, he told me it won “Engineering Consultant of the Year” in 2013 which certainly drew my attention. Following my interviews as a graduate I was offered five positions, three of which were with what one could call Mott MacDonald “rivals”. However, I felt that the Mott MacDonald interview process was geared towards teaching me about Mott MacDonald and the projects the team worked on and were working on at the time – this for me made my decision quite easy due to the prestigious nature of many Mott MacDonald projects.

What did your family and friends think?

My family was over the moon as I was offered a position at a consultancy in their central London office, which was my ambition as I left University in Newcastle Upon Tyne. They felt that I had secured myself a job with a company that was well-respected within the industry, has a great pension scheme and will certainly provide the opportunities for their son to progress and start a career, rather than a job.

What’s your graduate scheme like?

The graduate scheme at Mott MacDonald is fantastic – most notably the upGRADe system. The upGRADe system is a user-friendly tool for recording evidence against CEng competencies which you can monitor with your appointed mentor. This ensures that I’m working on the right projects and developing myself continually as a well-rounded Engineer.

What was it like to start formal employment after many years at university?

As I was waiting in the reception for one of the associates to greet me, I was quite nervous – as expected. However, he showed me around the office, introduced me to members of the team and talked about what I had been doing during university – this made me feel quite settled early on. Following on from this, I was expecting weeks of training, reading regulations and recommendations etc. however, I was immediately thrown into the design world. Initially, this was quite daunting as I didn’t want to make a mistake, however my buddy continually reviewed the work I was completing and told me not to be afraid of asking questions, no matter how silly I thought they were. A couple of weeks went by, I found my rhythm and felt fully integrated into the Mott MacDonald team and Mott MacDonald work ethos.

What’s the best thing about working at Mott MacDonald?

It’s certainly quite difficult to pinpoint exactly the best thing about working at Mott MacDonald. I could go on for a while talking about the great things at Mott MacDonald which range from the sports and social events, to the prestigious projects, to the training we receive. However, certainly a stand-out area is my fellow colleagues. They are approachable and knowledgeable which certainly makes it easier for a graduate to develop.

What’s the most exciting project you’ve been involved in?

I have worked on many prestigious projects which range from underground stations in Asia to world-renowned football stadiums here in London. However the stand-out project for me is a new power generation site in which I took my first lead electrical engineering role which encompassed design workshops in Paris, conceptual designs and the use of exciting new technologies which will make maintenance and controllability easier for our client.

What are you most proud of?

Again, it’s difficult to state exactly which achievement I am most proud of as there have been many proud moments. However, for me, it’s the joy of seeing a building you have designed from an MEP perspective being utilised by the client, whether this be a stadium or local school.

What support did you get whilst you were working towards your professional qualification?

Within your first week at Mott MacDonald you will learn how to effectively utilise the upGRADe system. With the upGRADe system, every graduate is given a mentor who has recently been through the professional qualification experience whether this be with IMechE, IET or CIBSE. This enables graduates to fully understand what is expected of them to achieve a professional qualification. Depending on how often you wish to meet with your mentor - typically you will arrange a quarterly meeting – you will discuss what you’ve been working on, what went well and why, what didn’t go well and why, what competencies you have been working on during the past quarter and what competencies you are should be aiming to work on for the next quarter. From this, your mentor will liaise with your line manager to ensure you are working on the projects that are most suited for your development.

What’s the Mott MacDonald Academy about?

The Mott MacDonald Academy is geared towards ensuring all new starters have the necessary skills to be well-rounded members of staff who are flexible and adaptable upon client expectations and aspirations, and encourages staff members to utilise the skills gained during the Academy on a day-to-day basis. Throughout the Mott MacDonald Academy, which is a four-year development programme, members of the team will interactively learn how to develop important professional and commercial skills. Not only this, it gives you a chance to meet fellow Graduates from other offices, developing your network within Mott MacDonald.

What would you say to someone thinking of applying?

Go for it! With Mott MacDonald you’re not just getting a job, you’re starting on a career path.

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