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Meet Ben, Project Technician on the iconic Gorgon

Posted by 4MAT Administrator
Posting date:11/26/2020 11:27 AM
When you start out your career as a Project Technician, you don't expect to be put onto one of the most complex works in the country. Ben Howe at SNC-Lavalin in Perth, Australia is currently working on three: Gorgon, Wheatstone Plant and Wheatstone Offshore Platform.

Ben's role is to help ensure the plants are connected and safe, through state-of-the-art telecommunications and electronic systems. His day-to-day tasks include coming up with engineering solutions, as well as updating project drawings & documentation, and working out any required materials & equipment. We recently caught up with him to find out more about his first 12 months at the organization:

How did you come to work at SNC-Lavalin?

After working for five years on Barrow Island during the construction phase of the Gorgon Project, I had the opportunity to work with SNC-Lavalin on the operations side of things as a Project Technician.   

How is your first year with us going?

I've only been here for a year, yet I've already been trusted with a lot of responsibility! I'm surrounded by such a great team who are supporting my development. And the more skills I learn, the more opportunities open up to me. I feel I've grown more, personally and professionally, in these last few months than I have done at any other company.

What was the most significant responsibility you've had so far?

Commissioning and signing off over 100+ Uninterrupted Power Supply (UPS) systems to Chevron on the Gorgon Project. The UPS's installed were to protect sensitive and critical telecoms equipment during interruptions to the main power supply. The scope was big, so it was an amazing feeling when the last UPS was successfully handed over.   

How did this challenge and change you?

The client was very thorough with the commissioning procedures, so it was quite an achievement to get some of them over the line. I had to know the UPS systems inside and out, so a lot of technical reading was required. This has been a great skill to learn and has helped me grow my career. For the majority of the project, I was in my 20's, and it accelerated my maturity. 

What do you love most about what you do?

I get a lot of satisfaction from working in the Telecommunications field as it is such a diverse and ever-evolving industry. Getting to work with all the latest technologies makes it an exciting career. I'm forever learning, which is great. The organization has made this possible by providing all the relevant support and training I need to succeed in my role.

How do you like to make a difference at work?

I pride myself on making life easier for our technicians permanently based on site. They're usually quite busy with break/fix type work, so it's critical we're organized from our side with the project works we deliver. This includes creating detailed work packs, which clearly define the job scope, identifying any hazards or outages needing mitigation, and ensuring all materials arrive on site.

Want to work where you can grow and thrive? Check out our latest jobs and projects at SNC-Lavalin in Australia.

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