A Career as a Contractor


As part of the Young Energy Performance Group's (YEPG) “Career in Building Services” series, today we meet Abs, who works as a Contractor. If you have any questions, you can contact us at yepg@cibse.org 

Abs has been in the contracting industry for 9 years. He started off through the structured apprenticeship route, going onto study a BEng Hons in Building Services Engineering at London South Bank University. 

He is currently working as a Project Manager and has taken several projects from inception to handover. His current project is an 8 storey office block in the heart of London. Abs currently serves as the vice-chair in YEPG and aids wherever is required, such as running events, liaising with external parties and ensuring the morale is always high!

Who are contractors?
Contractors are companies that are usually appointed after the design stage to carry out the construction works, from inception to handover. It, therefore, means being more presence on-site compared to consultant engineers. The contractors’ aim is to offer cost savings to the client, safeguarding the quality of the design and the energy performance.

Tell us about your typical tasks.
My daily duties vary broadly: I could be sorting out the logistics for a large plant delivery, or I could review the design for the project, ensuring the technologies specified by the consultant are the best fit for purpose systems for the application.
As part of my responsibilities, I recently managed the manufacturing, delivery and installation of the largest prefabricated riser to a London skyscraper (over 46 floors). This was a wonderful opportunity, as I got involved with many aspects of the construction, interfacing with various parties and allowing me to gain valuable experience.

What advice would you give those interested in the industry?
GO FOR IT!!! It’s the best thing I have done. I started at 16 and I haven’t looked back; I have been exposed to all elements of the construction process, from design to physical installation. This industry is perfect for people who have a positive and proactive attitude. “The world is your oyster”. The only advice I would give is to start with an open mind and don’t be afraid of facing problems or asking questions, what you put in is what you get out.

What brought you into contracting?
I was bored with having only a theoretical approach to engineering, so I opted for an apprenticeship. I knew I liked construction, but I didn’t know exactly what I was getting myself into. After the first couple of weeks, I just felt the thrill and I knew this was the career I wanted to engage and develop myself further. This pushed me to work harder, which then led me to get a fully sponsored degree via my workplace. As one door closes, another one opens!

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As a member, you gain access to the CIBSE Knowledge Portal, an online library giving you unlimited downloads of guidance and publications. CIBSE also has a Young Engineers Network (YEN) designed to support engineers in the early stages of their career. Find your local YEN region.

If you want to change the world, join us!


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