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Rachael Fisher, Managing Consultant Transport Planning, Atkins

Rachael

Managing Consultant Transport Planning

Business area: Transportation (Cities Space and Development Planning)
Job title: Managing Consultant Transport Planning
Years at Atkins: 13

How is your work taking transportation into tomorrow?

Effective planning is essential if we’re to meet long-term policy and investment decisions for a sustainable future.
We provide an innovative and diverse range of transport planning consultancy services, from producing supporting documents for planning applications, to developing transport strategies for new major developments and Cities and identifying supporting infrastructure requirements.
Understanding traffic and pedestrian movement is key to creating sustainable communities that have been planned, modelled and designed to cope with both today’s and future demands. We enable our Clients to create feasible developments; embedding sustainability and innovation in designs and assessing their transport impact to ensure deliverability. 
We know the importance of communicating our work to non-technical people so they understand the benefits of our schemes.  We’re always thinking about for innovative ways to do this, and have developed a unique Virtual Street Design tool to allow people to virtually walk through our schemes and understand how they will work in real life.

Why do you choose to stay at Atkins?  

There are such great people that you get to work with.  The support system is second to none, and we all work together to achieve a great outcome for our Clients.
I like variety and to feel like I’m challenging myself too, so getting to work on such a wide range of complex projects means I never get bored.  I’ve had a lot of opportunities to try out new things, like being a team leader, work winning, being seconded part time into Client offices and Project Management, so my role can vary quite a lot which keeps things interesting.

What do you think has had the biggest impact on your career development to date?  

The people at Atkins and the fantastic projects I’ve had the opportunity to work on. 
We genuinely work as a team - everyone is always happy to answer questions and lend a hand.  My Managers have always fully supported me and encouraged me to strive to continuously develop.  I started in the company as a graduate and am now a line manager for a team in Epsom and manage high profile projects like Rotherhithe to Canary Wharf crossing thanks to their coaching throughout my career.
Although I’ve specialised in development planning, I’ve been involved in a wide range of projects which has had a huge impact on my career development.  I’ve been involved in work including domestic and international mixed-use masterplanning projects, major highways schemes, airport expansions, major planning applications, new high-profile pedestrian and cyclist infrastructure and providing in-house development planning support to Local Authorities and the Spatial Planning team at Highways England.  I’ve been on several secondments, including to the Middle East which was a great experience.  This wide range of experience has enabled me to approach projects from both sides of the table and understand how disciplines interrelate.

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