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Dan Bishop, Structures Practice Director, Atkins


Structures Practice Director

When did you join Atkins?

1998 as a summer vacation student. I joined permanently in 2001.

Why did you join Atkins?

The people. I worked with 3 organisations during my summer vacations and Atkins stood out for me as having a fantastic culture and ‘feel’ that I wanted to be part of.

What did you do before you joined Atkins?

I worked with AMEC for a year after graduation prior to joining Atkins.

How would you describe your role and responsibilities?

As a Practice Director within the Civils and Structures Practice I lead and manager about 100 structures’ staff across 5 different offices. My team deliver designs for a huge range of infrastructure projects for clients including Network Rail and Highway England.

My main role is to make sure that everyone has plenty of challenging design work to do and that they can deliver this work competently and safely. I’m Project Director on a number of large projects and this involves me having oversight of all project related activities. I also support work winning within the Civils and Structures practice and across the wider Transportation division.

How do you describe what you do to friends and family?

My background is in bridges and building designs so I normally stick to that really. It’s great when I can point at a structure I designed and explain how it works. The tangibility of infrastructure engineering is one of the main reasons I chose to go into civil engineering as a career.

Do you have professional accreditations?

I’m a Chartered Civil Engineer with the Institution of Civil Engineers.

What are you currently working on?

I’m Project Director for a number of projects – but the main one at the moment is East West Rail Phase 1 which open to trains on the 26th October 2015. This project represents a £300M+ investment in the railway to build a new twin track 100mph railway between Oxford and Bicester. I’ve been involved with the project since 2008 so to see it nearing completion is great.

What achievement are you most proud of?

Supporting my first graduate through the chartered professional review for the ICE. Seeing someone work hard and get the recognition they deserved was really rewarding. I’ve supported loads of people since then and am now a reviewer with the ICE myself – but the first one stands out.

How have you been supported during your career development?

I’ve always had a huge amount of support from colleagues within Atkins that has helped me grow and develop my career. When I first joined the support I had was geared around helping me become professionally qualified with the Institution of Civil Engineers. Post chartership the support moved toward helping me development my commercial and business management expertise to allow me to take more leadership orientated roles.

How do engineers and Atkins make a difference?

The infrastructure we design connects people, communities, cities and nations. These connections enable socio-economic development and ultimately drive growth over many generations.

How would you describe the culture at Atkins?

Supportive, inclusive, collaborative, professional, positive, open and honest.

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