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Working at Babcock | James Cleggett

Who are you and what do you do?

I am a Graduate Mechanical Engineer based in Adelaide, Australia who has been a part of multiple teams in my first year and a half at Babcock. Most recently, my focus has been on environment and sustainability as I have worked on carbon footprint analyses, fleet vehicle electrification, and environmental impact assessments of anti-corrosion coatings.

What do you like most about working at Babcock?

The aspect of working at Babcock I have most enjoyed has been the collaboration with various teams and the diverse people within these. I have been lucky enough to work in roles which service multiple lines of business, allowing me to gain exposure to large parts of the company and many individuals within the business. I see this as being extremely beneficial to my development as a young engineer because it has allowed me to learn from people with all kinds of backgrounds and skillsets.

How is your role supporting our purpose ‘helping you create a safer, more secure world for us to live in’?

My most recent work has been focussed on determining and suggesting feasible ways to reduce the carbon footprint of the business in Australasia. This work is vital to creating a safer, more secure world as it helps the business care more for our planet, contributing to an environment in which we can thrive. By reducing our carbon footprint, Babcock can inspire change within other businesses, influencing positive environmental change on a large scale.

What did you enjoy most about the Grad program?

I am just starting my journey on Babcock’s Graduate Program. After completing a full-time internship, I continued to work at Babcock part-time while completing my studies. I am close with the current Australian graduates (who started at the same time as I started my internship) and many agree that staying connected with their cohort through monthly meetings and activities has been a highlight.

What motivated/inspired you to become an engineer?

I have always enjoyed critical thinking and problem solving ever since I was a kid. The more complex the problem, the happier I was to spend time trying to find a solution. I also love learning new things and this is a critical part of who an engineer is. I think my interest in physics and how things move took me down the path of mechanical engineering, but my university studies also cultivated strong interests in sustainability, energy generation, and nuclear power.

What top tip/inspirational advice would you give the younger you or someone starting out in engineering?

Do not expect to be a perfect engineer from day one. The profession requires experience to do it successfully, so my suggestion would be to seek out as many of these experiences as you can and take every opportunity offered to you. In addition, try to work with as many different people as possible, because everyone has different ways of doing things and there is always something you can learn from them, no matter what their role or specialty is.

What are the top three reasons you would recommend Babcock as an employer to someone?

Firstly, the people at Babcock are fantastic. I have not come across a single person in the business who has not treated me with respect or valued my time and opinions, even though I am young and lack the experience of other employees. Secondly, the diverse range of programs open up many opportunities and career paths for a young engineer. There is always something going on in the business of interest to nearly any kind of engineer. Thirdly, the policy of the business (and therefore managers) on agile working gives employees flexibility. I find that I am far more productive in the morning than the late afternoon, so I have negotiated with my manager to get to the office early and leave early, as long as I complete my work.

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