Senior Project Manager - Simon
Name: Simon Hill
Job Title: Senior Project Manager
Company name: Alfasi Constructions (Hong Kong)
Brief description of current role
Project Manager for the Structural Steelwork on the Kowloon Terminus Roof. Sub-contracted to carry out fabrication, delivery, and erection of the 11,000 tons of steelwork for the roof. Management of over 60 direct staff and 100 site labour. Management of four fabrication yards sub-contracted to deliver the various components. These are situated in Thailand and Mainland China.
Brief description of previous experience
Construction Manager on various projects in the Middle East and UK. These were a combination of structural steel and concrete frames to completion.
How did you start your career and transition to where you are now?
Began as a Cartographic Draughtsman in the UK before transferring to Engineering Surveying on Projects in UK and the Far East. After several years behind the Total Station I had an opportunity to move into Site Engineering/management and this was a great move for me to broaden my horizons
How did Maxim Recruitment help you?
Maxim Recruitment have provided numerous quality placements to our project here in Hong Kong as well as providing me with this current opportunity in Hong Kong. Maxim has constantly sourced long-term career staff who have fitted into our team in a difficult working environment.
What do you enjoy most about your current role?
It’s a challenging position with various issues regarding design closure, increased costs, and retention of existing sub contractors in an ever-changing commercial climate. I have to balance our clients needs against feasible deliverables in line with what our fabricators can realistically achieve with numerous changes to the design and onerous inspection criterias. On a day-to-day basis I have to balance these requirements which makes the decision making process a tough one.
What led you to pursue a career in your industry?
The switch to construction management from surveying was brought about by an opportunity in the UK. I was working on Wembley stadium and this was a well-known challenge which ultimately forced a lot of people to change direction and I was no exception. Having moved to a more hands on Construction Management role I have not looked back and enjoy the task of delivering projects.
What advice do you have for others entering your industry?
Choose your employer carefully. One that allows you to take responsibility but also supports you when there are tough decisions to be made. I have been lucky to have experienced people around me to offer advice and support. The rewards in our industry are immense and I have been lucky enough to work on some complex and challenging projects around the World and I have loved every minute of it.
What are the main challenges for you and the industry?
Delivering to programme is much harder with clients’ expectations becoming unrealistic. The advent of more complex designs are not always the best to deliver in our routine construction processes which isn’t always allowed for with detailed design development against constructability.
What are your professional aspirations, for example what do you think you’ll be doing in five years time?
I have a long-term plan with Alfasi and we see our development in the Asia region as the target for growth. There are several developing markets that we are keen to move into and this will see my role hopefully broaden within the Group.
Where are you based (place and country) and what is it like living and working there?
We have settled in Hong Kong although our daughters are in boarding school in England so if we have to relocate work-wise it’s made easier without the schooling problems so evident in various regions. We enjoy the pace of the city but live in the outskirts so can get out on the bikes at weekends and relax. It’s always difficult with the family being so far away but Skype has proved invaluable.
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