Staff Spotlight: Chris Bradley
It’s one thing I noticed when I first came here: everyone always seemed to be pulling in the same direction. Everyone’s always looking for a solution to any challenges that come up.
What is your role
I’m a Senior Engineer/Project Manager at the Chester office. I organise, commission, run and report ground investigation projects.
When did you join the company?
I joined in October 2014 so I’ve been here just over three years.
I’d been at my last job for about 15 years, but then unfortunately they were closing their office. Before they did that, I looked at Geotechnics and saw that they were recruiting. I did a bit of digging into them, came for an interview and then came straight across.
How did you first get involved in the geotechnical industry?
Even as a child I had a natural interest in building things and making things. I discovered that the course to take if you like that was Civil Engineering, and while I was at university I found out about the ground investigation side of things. I enjoyed the mix that it offered of site and office work, rather than being stuck in an office all the time.
What’s a typical day like for you?
Well, it depends on the project I’m working on. At the moment I’m doing a lot of reporting on projects. My speciality is pulling together the information, writing up logs and test data, and pulling everything together for the final reports. A lot of my day is spent checking, writing and filling in the final factual reports.
But then there’ll be other periods where I am out on site. It seems to be in fits and bursts for the moment. I would say that I’m much more office based now: it’s nice to have the regular office day so you know where you are on any given day.
The atmosphere in the office is probably one of the things that makes working here quite so enjoyable. I will always say that we’ve got a good team spirit. It’s one thing I noticed when I first came here: everyone always seemed to be pulling in the same direction. Everyone’s always looking for a solution to any challenges that come up. You’ve got a lot of camaraderie and support. There’s a good team spirit here.
What do you do when you’re on site?
It varies from site to site, but normally it’s the day-to-day supervision of drilling or trial pitting. If it’s a larger site, I collate the information and act as a conduit between Geotechnics and the client to make sure they get everything that they need.
What was it like when you first started at Geotechnics?
Obviously it takes a little bit of time to find your feet, and everyone was very friendly from the off. Everyone was very helpful, and now I’m at a stage where I can pass things on to the Graduate Engineers.
How do you think the site investigation industry has changed over the years?
It’s become a lot more safety driven. 20 years ago, you’d see guys in trainers, shorts, sleeveless tops, no hard hats… You don’t see that kind of thing any more. Now safety’s become a lot more rigorous, and the industry’s better for it.
What have been some of your favourite projects to work on?
I really enjoyed working on Triton Knoll in summer 2016. Geotechnics had set it up so that it could be supervised in a very thorough manner. There were enough staff and facilities on the job so that there was no excuse for work not to be carried out to the best of our ability. The workload was managed very carefully so we could always stick to the timescales that were involved. Plus, it was a nice part of the country and it was sunny every day. What’s not to like?
What kind of things do you get up to outside of Geotechnics?
I’m a very busy husband and father. I enjoy doing things with my family like going out, seeing new places and trying new things. Cycling, cooking, walking… I try to fill my free time with new experiences, whether they’re new places, new restaurants, new hills, new walks or new friends.
What is a surprising fact that other people might not know about you?
I’ve got a Bravery Award from the Royal Humane Society. When I was about 14, my friends and I rescued a boy who fell off a waterfall. He had to get airlifted out, and then later we filmed a reconstruction for a programme called 999 with Michael Buerk. That was many years ago now!
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