With National Women in Engineering Day set for 23 June, UK-headquartered Global Marine Systems Limited, the world leader in subsea system design, installation and maintenance, has been canvassing the views of a selection of female engineers employed within the business about the opportunities and challenges of working in the engineering industry.
Philippa Warren, for example, has been a Proposals Engineer in the company’s Sales & Commercial Department since January 2015. “My qualifications and previous experience allowed me to look at a wide range of career options, however, the responsibilities, scope to learn and day-to-day diversity of this role really caught my eye,” she says. Philippa adds that Global Marine has given her opportunity to deal with complex projects and liaise with clients around the world.
Proposals Engineers at Global Marine enjoy a varied role with many responsibilities, such as developing the technical, commercial and financial solution as contract bids progress, liaising with relevant project stakeholders, and ensuring proposals adhere to consistent corporate standards, target costs and at all times meeting the customer’s expectations.
“Every day is different and because of that I am always learning something new,” says Philippa. “Engineering is not just for men and can provide a diverse and fulfilling career path to women.”
Among Philippa’s colleagues is Sam Moncur, a fellow Proposals Engineer flying the flag for women in engineering at Global Marine. Sam says that the role allows her the opportunity to work with many different departments, gaining knowledge and obtaining new skills for career development.
“I previously worked in the Subsea department, then Global Marine invested in the necessary training for me to move in a different direction,” she says. “I love working here as every day results in learning something new about the business and our sector, which keeps me motivated. Engineering is very male dominated, but being a woman within the industry makes you individual, unique and in some ways more determined.”
Another female employee at Global Marine is Sheryl Ong, based in Singapore, who despite only being employed in her role as a Proposals Engineer for a short time, is relishing the opportunity to further both her technical knowledge and her career.
“It’s good to go against the stereotype that engineering is only for men,” she says. “It is also fun to learn about the physics of engineering, rather than just accepting things as they are.”
Although Sheryl is happy to recommend a career in engineering for women, she also says that careful consideration is required.
“In my opinion, unless they have the necessary passion, it is not a career suitable for all women,” she states. “They need to have a certain amount of technical inclination, love formulae in one way or another, and be comfortable in a male dominated environment. You need a strong character in order to stand your ground.”