A career at WCS is about so much more than engineering. We pride ourselves on creating a collaborative environment that delivers excellence to our clients and supports our employees to build truly rewarding careers.
To give you an insight into the WCS workplace, we asked our employees about the opportunities they’ve most enjoyed since joining the business. Today we’re talking to Natalja Petkune BEng, MSc, PhD, a Senior Structural Engineer who joined the company at the end of 2021.
What has been your most exciting opportunity at WCS?
I joined the company just over 3 months ago so I’m still pretty new to the business. My background is in the building sector and I’ve moved into infrastructure at WCS. I’m really enjoying the combination of applying my previous knowledge whilst developing new knowledge. I’ve already learned a lot – my WCS colleagues are experts in this field and they’re all very open to sharing what they know and answering questions. WCS has a great peer review process so you can share knowledge, collaborate – it’s a really good way to find the most cost-effective solutions for clients.
It’s a very friendly atmosphere – people offer their expertise, and they’re open to suggestions. Even though I’m new, I was working on a project where my past experience was really relevant. I made a suggestion for how we could do something and it was implemented. You can speak up, be heard, have your ideas considered and implemented. It’s really rewarding.
How does WCS support your career development?
I had a career appraisal review even during my probationary period giving me an opportunity to reflect on my projects to date and look at areas to work on. My manager is very supportive and I can see how my responsibilities will grow as I build my knowledge base and gain more commercial awareness. In the future, I’m hoping to manage a small team and train our graduates. And as part of my CPD I plan to run seminars for the rest of the team to share my knowledge.
What have you enjoyed most so far?
I’m definitely enjoying the collaborative way we work. You don’t work in a project silo. Prior to starting work I did a PhD and I really enjoy that way of continued teaching and learning from each other.
What will the next 12 months bring you?
When I worked in a larger company, my role was very design focused. But because of the way WCS is structured, I still get to work on exciting projects, but I get involved in more areas and can see how they all fit together. I’m looking forward to learning more of the commercial elements and the tendering process.
What does an average day look like?
Every day is different. I’ll be working on designs, meeting with the design team and clients, reviewing drawings and making site visits. It all depends on where you are on the project. Next week looks very different to this week.