What's your job about?
Probuild is a tier-one construction company and along with many projects Australia-wide, has undertaken one of the largest projects in the country – The Star Suite Hotel Project, where I am currently responsible for the delivery of a major infrastructure upgrade.
Through the Graduate Program I have been exposed to a wide range of construction project roles and responsibilities, from tender stage, procurement and project delivery. The Star Suite Hotel Project comprises of a six-star hotel and casino, a 300m road bridge and intersection upgrade as well as an extensive expansion of infrastructure such as major mechanical and electrical plant.
In my first year as a Graduate I was involved in logistics planning, site set up and document control, as well as commercial responsibilities such as procurement and management of trade packages, where I learnt how costs are tracked and managed and gained an understanding of how construction projects are managed commercially.
Since then I have been involved with the infrastructure upgrade for the Suite Hotel project and existing Star Casino. This has been extremely rewarding, as I have been responsible for resolving design issues, site supervision, health and safety, coordination and programming, as well as coordination of service diversions and demolition.
The Infrastructure Upgrade has been particularly interesting as it interfaces with the existing Star Casino and Hotel. Interfacing with a live, operational building hosts a number of challenges which has proven an extremely rewarding experience. Coming from a structural background, I have learnt an abundance of information about building services through being involved in this aspect of the project.
What's your background?
I was born in Brisbane, Queensland and between my dad and my grandfather both in the construction industry, I was always building things as a kid and loved going to site on weekends or days off. I attended St Joseph’s Gregory Terrace high school, where I made lifelong friendships through the love of rugby and the outdoors. After high school I accepted an offer to study at the Queensland University of Technology and graduated in 2015 with a Bachelor degree in Civil Engineering.
In 2015 I started with Probuild as an Undergraduate while in my final year of university. Throughout the year I had the opportunity to work on multiple projects, as well as assist with new business from Head Office. I gained valuable experience on Iglu – a student accommodation building in Brisbane CBD as well as at the Grand Central Shopping Centre expansion, a large shopping centre project in Toowoomba.
Towards the end of my final year of university, Probuild won the Star Suite Hotel Project on the Gold Coast, where I was offered the opportunity to be part of the project team. I graduated from university at the end of 2015 and accepted a job at Probuild as a Graduate. I moved to the Gold Coast, which was an easy decision for me, as I love surfing and the ocean. I’ve now spent 18 months living and working on the Gold Coast and have loved the experience so far, both as a graduate and outside of work.
Could someone with a different background do your job?
Yes, the construction industry thrives on people of different backgrounds to constantly provide new perspectives and approaches to solving problems. I believe the most important skills required to be successful as a construction graduate are a willingness to learn and effective communication skills. Along with having technical skills, which will come along the way, anyone can be successful in the construction industry if they communicate well and possess a desire to learn.
What's the coolest thing about your job?
The tangible nature of the construction industry is what I love coming to work for. Seeing a plan come together and being part of the delivery of a building project is something I find very rewarding.
What comes with this is working with a diverse range of people with different skillsets and backgrounds. While there are always challenges, I enjoy solving design issues or working with other team members to develop the best approach. Working through tough issues is what I find most rewarding.
What are the limitations of your job?
What can be difficult to adjust to as a Graduate is balancing time outside of work. The construction industry can be quite demanding at times and early mornings, late nights and working on weekends is not uncommon. However, I have learnt the importance of a work life balance and developed time management skills to assist with ensuring I have time do go to the beach, exercise and clear my head for the next day’s challenges.
3 pieces of advice for yourself when you were a student...
- You have more time than you think! Get up early and get into good work/life habits.
- Take work experience anywhere, even if you think its not where you want to end up. Every experience can be positive, and you may surprise yourself with the type of work you enjoy or thank yourself for avoiding a potentially wrong career choice. Either way you will come away better off.
- Travel whenever you can – it doesn’t have to be far. University provides great time off between studying and while work experience is important, travelling at these times can be just as beneficial and rewarding.