Assistant Project Manager
Construction, International Technology
With digital innovation becoming ever more prominent in the construction sector, Imogen Hawksbee joined Mace knowing that her degree in computer science would provide her with the perfect foundation to thrive in our international technology team. She now uses her skills to help the team work more efficiently and has trained hundreds of Mace staff on how to use digital tools to better collaborate and share ideas.
- How did you get into what you do?
I studied computer science at university and got my first construction experience when I worked for a student letting agency that was organising a major programme of refurbishment works. I also got a taste for the sector when I helped my family to build an extension to our house - my Dad is a construction manager and both of my brothers work in the building trade. After all of that I really wanted to get into construction and I was fortunate enough to join Mace on its graduate scheme in 2018.
- How has your career progressed since joining Mace?
I started my career as a project assistant in construction. Almost immediately after I joined I was given the opportunity to work on one of our big data centre projects in Denmark. It was a great experience, supporting the team on site and learning how all the different skills and workstreams come together on a project, from MEP and CSA to the planning process. Working abroad and having the opportunity to support different teams empowered me to take on responsibility early on in my career.
After my return to the UK, I supported the Programme Support Team in Ireland for three months to share lessons learned, train the team and implement best practice on other data centre projects.
Another major part of my role is now writing bids and telling the story of how we plan to deliver, innovate and add value for our clients on their data centre projects.
- What do you enjoy most about your current role at Mace?
It’s the variety that I enjoy most about my role. One day I might be working on a bid for a major data centre project in Europe, the next I’m digitally upskilling our project teams in Denmark, Netherlands and Ireland, or I might be out on site to check project progress and complete health and safety assessments.
Working for a large international business allows me to easily tap into a wide range of skills and knowledge across the business to come up with new ideas to become the best in the market.
- What skills do you need to be good at your job?
Confidence, passion, flexibility and determination. You can develop the right skills, but if you don’t have the passion to come up with ideas, the confidence to present them or the determination to implement them, you won’t achieve your goals. You need to believe in what you’re doing and take people on the journey with you, while always remaining aware of change and being flexible enough to adapt.
For the technical aspect of my role, digital know how and being a good presenter are both crucial. With my training experience I was given the opportunity to lead the roll out of our BIM 360 plan across the international technology business and provide training sessions for project teams from other business units. I’ve created a digital management plan to optimise the tools the teams are using during project delivery. There are so many exciting things happening in the digital space right now and I try to find ways that we can harness advanced technology to push our thinking forward.
- What are you passionate about?
Mace supported me in my training to become a qualified mental health first aider. It’s important that we raise our game and become more open and transparent about mental health. I try and educate people around me and remove the stigma bit by bit.
- If you hadn’t got into this line of work what do you think you might be doing?
I probably would have become a full-time pottery teacher. I was Head of Pottery at a summer camp in Canada where I taught kids, and I have a pottery wheel at my parents’ house which I always get out when I’m back home.
“If you don’t have the passion to come up with ideas, the confidence to present them or the determination to implement them, you won’t achieve your goals. ”