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Tom Zevenhoven - Project Manager

Teamwork is very important at Bilfinger. You really need each other at Turn Arounds and projects. And not just your own team; all the different departments need each other. It's a team effort."

The story of Tom

When this interview was conducted, Tom was still an executor, but he has since made the move and has advanced to project leader! Would you also like to enter such a growth trajectory? Take a look at the possibilities of a

Traineeship Project manager

 


How did you end up at Bilfinger?

"I wanted to gain work experience in the field and not just be busy behind the drawing board or with theory. After all - I've figured that out now - theory doesn't always work in practice by a long shot. I was approached for a position at Bilfinger. The first interview was fun; actually, at first we just talked about engineering - something I love. Then I went to meet at Bilfinger's LCR, where, among other things, insulation moldings are made. I found it very interesting and beautiful to see how much engineering is behind insulation and tracing. So I started as a Jr. Tracing Engineer.

Because I wanted to grow and learn even more, I have now been given the opportunity to become an Insulation Superintendent, with the prospect of advancing to project leader after a few years. I never expected to be able to say that at this age!"

What's fun about working at Bilfinger?

"I started as a Tracing Engineer at the BP Refinery Rotterdam site and then a world actually opens up for you. So much happens technically at such a plant, but normally you don't get to see that. Most people only see the "chimneys behind the big fence. But you really only get to see what really happens and how much technical ingenuity goes on in the plant when you work there. If you really love technology, it's the best thing there is.

There is also a real team spirit at Bilfinger. With big projects or Turn Arounds, you are really working together to get such an immense job done. At first, it can be overwhelming how much work is involved, and you work long hours. But it gives an incredibly good feeling to finish it, because everyone is pulling together.

Moreover, a lot is possible. I made steps within the Tracing profession, but I wanted to learn other things and disciplines, so I got the chance to grow. Eventually I was asked if I wanted to become an Insulation Supervisor. I had to think about it for a while, because it's a big responsibility. But fortunately I get good coaching and help from an experienced project leader, so I dared to accept the challenge. You can really learn a lot here, if you are open to it. There are people working here with a lot of experience and knowledge that they are happy to share with you.

What does your day look like?

"As a foreman, I am both technical and executive. I am responsible for ensuring that the insulation work is carried out on time, safely and to a high standard. In doing so, I manage the insulation crew. That means I sometimes work in the office with drawings and spreadsheets, but I'm also outside working a lot with the insulation technicians. When necessary, or just to give the guys a hand, I'm also on the job site a lot. "

How important is teamwork?

"Teamwork is very important at Bilfinger. You really need each other at Turn Arounds and projects. And not just your own team; all the different departments need each other. After all, the insulation crew can't do anything if they can't get to the asset at height, and the Tracing crew can't do anything if the insulation isn't unpacked. It's an interplay. There is also never anyone during a major project who sells "no. It is not a question of whether it can be done, but how we are all going to do it. That's really nice to see. "

What does your future look like at Bilfinger?

"I've just been an isolation contractor for a month now, with a project manager helping me with planning and administration. My trajectory is a three-year plan. In a year or two there will be a major Turn Around here at BP Refinery Rotterdam. By that time, the intention is that, as project leader, I will be entirely responsible for the insulation work for this Turn Around. For such a project there are 40 to 50 men working. "

And after that?

"What I would like is to really look at the whole, multidisciplinary, picture. Because I now have experience with tracing, insulation and a bit of scaffolding, it would be nice to eventually be able to use that knowledge and experience as a site manager, for example. Then I can really look at how the different disciplines can work better together and strengthen each other even more.  All that is possible within Bilfinger, if you show that you are motivated. "

What would you still like to learn yourself?

"I'm actually a real beta. So I can still develop on an organizational level, and in terms of dealing with people - the so-called 'soft skills' . In the position of supervisor or project leader, it is really important that you know how to motivate people. You can understand everything so well technically, but it's the people who make sure a job goes well or not. So I think it's important that on the one hand you show that you know what you're talking about and aren't afraid to get your hands dirty, and on the other hand you take on the role as a manager who has to make sure that a project runs well and quality work is delivered. "

Why should potential new colleagues choose Bilfinger?

"You work for very large companies in the industry, in places you would otherwise never go. You really never stop learning here either. Because Bilfinger is such a large and diverse company, you can go in any direction in terms of function and field. Insulation is very different from Scaffolding or Painting, but from all disciplines you can learn a lot about the bigger picture. There really is a lot of opportunity within Bilfinger - but you have to really want it."

Does Tom's story sound like music to your ears and are you ready to take on the challenge? We are looking for even more talent.

Apply now for the vacancy:

JUNIOR PROJECT MANAGER INSULATION (TRAINEE)

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