Daniel Brodie

Senior Electrical Engineer

"The market moves so fast, so there’s always something new and you’re continually learning."

Question: How did you get into electrical engineering?

Daniel: I studied electrical engineering at university because when you finish there are so many options of what you can do for a career: you can be a computer programmer modelling designs or someone who wires circuit boards. Or, you could even be out on site maintaining panels or even doing lighting design, developing the LEDs within light fittings. That’s why I found it so interesting. So many options and so many different paths that I could follow.

Question: Has your job lived up to your expectations?

Daniel: Yeah, it’s very varied. One day I could be working on a hospital, the next day on a flight simulator facility at Heathrow and then even a data centre. You don’t have to be stuck doing one thing day in day out. The market moves so fast, so there’s always something new and you’re continually learning. Sometimes I’m working on the 3D modelling design taking someone else’s schematic design and implementing that in a 3D BIM model. Other times, I’ve had to do the whole project design from start to finish. For example, one job was a strip out and refit job, so I got to look at the old ‘as built’ drawings, then produce my design from there. Ensuring it complied with all the relevant standards and implement it...going out on site, liaising with the clients, all of it.

Question: You mention 3D modelling, does technology play a large role in your job?

Daniel: Yes, increasingly so. There’s been a general industry shift towards a BIM mentality, so 3D modelling is massive. I’ve always been really interested in the software side of things and 3D modelling has come very easily to me. I’m quite good at programming and the visual Revit work. We try to keep all of our models to BIM Level 2 standard, which gives everyone a lot more information in one place rather than a 2D CAD drawing. It allows you to see how everything collaborates, like will the cable tray work with the ductwork and so on. It makes the process so much more efficient meaning there’s less room for error. What’s more, Bryden Wood are really quite far ahead of the industry in terms of the design detail we’re able to give our clients.

Question: How are clients reacting to this new tech based approach?

Daniel: When you show them the model, they are pretty amazed by it. I remember we did a presentation for a residential development in London and we did a rendered 3D model of the external lighting design. We set the client up with the Oculus Rift goggles and an XBox controller and she was able to walk round her site looking at all the light positions and everything. She was blown away. It’s such a cool experience to be part of and see someone’s mind blown by something like that.

Question: How does it feel to get this kind of feedback from a client?

Daniel: The feedback is always great, especially at the very end when the job is all finished and you can look at the finalised package and think I developed that. I think my proudest moment - even though it was only a small job at the medical suite - was when I went on site and there were electricians holding drawings with my name on them, fitting out to my design. Going on from uni to that really took me aback.

Question: What does the future look like?

Daniel: I believe it is going to progress to the point where you’re going to have everything in the one model. I think it’ll even get to the stage, where you’ll have the VR goggles on, you’ll look at something and point at or click something and it will tell you everything you need to know. Cost, weight, anything. It will save so much time, especially if you can perfect the offsite manufacturing process at the same time. It will all fit together like a jigsaw and get screwed or bolted together onsite, which means there will be less room for error and sites will be a lot safer.