"I am working on a London Bridge station remodeling project as part of the Thameslink upgrade programme."
Since Jonathan completed several summer placements within Balfour Beatty Rail, he hasn’t looked back. After Graduating in 2010, Jonathan joined our Technical Graduate Scheme and has worked on some of the UK’s major rail projects, developing his rail engineering expertise with the aim of becoming a Chartered Civil Engineer.
Tell us a bit about your role, the project you are supporting and the type of work you undertake on a daily basis.
I am working on a London Bridge station remodeling project as part of the Thameslink upgrade programme. Balfour Beatty is one of the partners on the project, and we are responsible for all the track works associated with the remodeling.
As a Project Engineer I am involved in the planning, engineering construction and close-out of track installations, as well as having an input into the design process. No day is the same! On one day I could be reviewing design drawings, calculating material quantities for train plans while developing a programme of works. On another I might be meeting with plant suppliers to discuss possible strategies for undertaking future work.
What attracted you to Balfour Beatty?
I had seen the Balfour Beatty branding on a number of large engineering projects and fancied having a go at supporting some of the works. The company also offered to sponsor me via a scholarship scheme while I was at university, and to provide me with placement work within the rail sector which is where I initially wanted to work. Graduating into the company was a natural progression.
What development opportunities have you been given while in your role?
I have been given some fantastic opportunities with some high profile projects. The best for me so far was leading the planning for a 12-day blockade of part of the Central Line on London Underground at Hainault. I learnt a lot from the planning and delivery of those works, which involved a number of disciplines and was logistically very complicated! It was a great opportunity to gain exposure to the Balfour Beatty and London Underground management teams.
Of course the graduate development programme and the assistance I have received in working towards their professional engineering qualifications have been great. Both have helped me develop my knowledge and skill sets, and prepare for my future career.
How has Balfour Beatty played a role in your long term career goals?
The Group provided support and work placements during my time at university, helping me to attain my degree, which was an important first step. My long term career goals are to be a professionally qualified engineer with a large base of multidisciplinary experience in the rail engineering sector and the company is supporting me through the process to become a chartered civil engineer.
What has been your highlight so far at Balfour Beatty?
There have been many highlights, but I still remember taking a moment at the end of a busy shift on site and watching in awe as a complex point-work renewal on the London Underground network at White City started coming together. There were excavators and dozers working away laying ballast as behind a 500 tonne capacity road crane started lifting in the complex puzzle of track panels. It was a great to see what I had been planning come to life – it was certainly a baptism of fire as the first renewal that I had planned as a graduate.
What one thing has surprised you most about working for Balfour Beatty?
Just how quick the working day goes by!
What are the top three tips/advice that you give to anyone thinking of applying to Balfour Beatty?