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Principal Engineer

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Job Details

B&K Structures is an energetic company at the forefront of timber engineering in the UK. We are looking for a Principal Engineer who can lead teams, is comfortable communicating across businesses and with a profound knowledge of timber and steel design at both scheme and detail stages. You should be keen to broaden your knowledge of engineering to include fabrication techniques, temporary works and connection design. You will need to learn the fundamentals of, and work with, structural fire engineers and building physics specialists. You will need to be flexible, have an ability to research and develop new techniques, and be able to communicate with a wide range of different people with confidence. You will ideally have +5years of design experience in building structures, be MSc, MEng or PhD qualified and be either chartered or very close to chartership with the ICE or IStructE.

Job Purpose

  • Reporting directly to the Technical Manager, the successful candidate will be expected to show technical leadership across teams of in-house and external engineers.
  • Working within the research strategy set by the Technical Manager, work towards achieving R&D goals that affect the entire company.
  • Constantly look for new and better ways of doing things, both technical and practical while learning from the experiences of others.
  • Provide technical advice to external project teams on how best to use engineered timber with consideration of more than just structural engineering alone.
  • Produce structural designs including both member and panel sizing as well as connection designs for both tenders and live contracts.
  • Provide advice on the stability of structures both in the temporary and permanent conditions.
  • Attend pre or post contract design meetings, either independently or as part of a team.
  • Continue the company’s ethos of developing new methods of working, exploring new design methods and seeking out fresh opportunities.

Key Duties and Responsibilities include:

  • Lead in house teams, communicate with external engineering resources and interact with project teams to assist with the development of robust designs.
  • Represent the company at meetings in a confident and professional manner, at both tender and contract stage. This may include meetings with Main Contractors, Architects, Consulting Engineers or Clients directly.
  • Develop areas of research; work with other departments and external specialists to turn ideas into reality that improve construction methods.
  • Produce designs for structures for both tender and live contacts including primary / secondary member designs together with connection details and temporary works requirements for the safe erection of the structure.
  • Produce sketches and marked up drawings to communicate design intent as well as detailed calculations to back up design proposals, presented in a clear, legible, manner.
  • Assist in the development of design procedures and in the development of design spreadsheets (and/or other software) for use by the in-house design department.
  • Review and assess designs produced by other engineers (either internal or external), ensuring validity.
  • Liaise with other departments within the company and have an appreciation of pressures on other areas of the business. 
  • Assist in consolidation of the current knowledge in the business, in respect of working details, tolerances and preferences.
  • Provide competent design advice, in support of the Contracts, Estimating and Commercial departments.
  • Ensure that the design files for each contract are kept up to date and that new files are set up in line with the company QA procedures.
  • Further develop knowledge of structural design and the design knowledge base within the company.
  • Carry out an active role in the Commercial management of the business, in support of the Contracts/Commercial teams.

Skills, experience and attributes required:

  • The applicant is required to have a strong academic record in engineering to MEng, MSc or PhD level. The applicant should either already by Chartered, or be close to achieving Chartered status, with the IStructE or ICE.
  • Candidates must be able present technical information succinctly and confidently in presentations and meeting environments.
  • Candidates should be comfortable leading teams of engineers, either in-house or externally.
  • Candidates must be able to demonstrate their ability to read engineering drawings and specifications to produce a co-ordinated design.
  • Have a good working knowledge of relevant design codes (both British Standards and Eurocodes).
  • Have an appreciation and understanding of the impact of design solutions on other trades and functions.
  • Have a good appreciation of the commercial impact of design and associated details (for example machining, fabrication and erection).
  • Have an appreciation of site conditions, working practises and capabilities.
  • Good IT skills, naturally capable of using Excel, Word and Outlook, as well as previous experience of using structural design software. BKS currently operate MasterSeries, Dlubal RFEM and IdeaStatica software – experience in using these packages would be preferable.
  • Have the ability to work logically and methodically.
  • The ability to multitask, organise workflow and respond quickly to new challenges is essential.
  • Ability to work to strict deadlines, ensure delivery to agreed programme and commercial constraints.
  • The role requires good interpersonal, communication and organisational skills.
  • The successful candidate will be capable of acting on their initiative within a demanding environment but also be able to work as part of a team.
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