James Hope joins the Symal Structures team as Engineering Manager with an impressive resume showcasing expertise in the construction industry both in Australia and overseas. He lives and breathes engineering and could best be described as an engineering athlete who has worked on some of the largest structures that have been built.
“I love problem-solving. It’s the best way of doing things – working with people. Engineering is a team effort with the best solutions coming from collaboration.”
Graduating from the University of Melbourne with Honours in Civil Engineering, he worked with Aurecon for five years and then dived straight into Dubai – the heart of a booming construction city. There he worked for Brewer Smith Brewer Gulf (BSBG) as Lead Engineer and head of the UAE Structural Division. He was promoted numerous times over his five years in Dubai cumulating in 2010 as Associate and part of the BSBG senior management team.
He gained all-round experience: away from home, working with diverse teams, living within an Arab culture with different traditions and gaining extraordinary experience within an international construction business.
James returned to Australia in 2012 landing in Western Australia as a Design Manager for tier-one company Multiplex. In WA, James was part of the newly created engineering division where his goal was developing his design management, onsite construction and project management experience. While he was building his personal life, he worked professionally on some large construction projects – $200 million Roy Hill Accommodation Village in East Pilbara and had a role in tendering for the $1billion world-class multi-purpose Perth Stadium.
Returning home to Melbourne in 2015 to marry and start a family, James continued working with Multiplex as Assistant Project Manager where he developed a strong understanding of the day to day operations of complex construction sites and the management of large teams.
His engineering notoriety consolidated on the large-scale projects shaping Melbourne – 80 Collins Street, Monash University Learning and Teaching Building, the 72 storey residential tower Swanston Central and currently under construction 405 Bourke Street that represents one of the biggest structures in Melbourne comprising three steel trusses extending over existing buildings to support 26 floors, over 10,000 tonnes of structural steel and 10,000m3 of concrete in the core.
James joined the Symal Structures team at the right time in his construction career. His extensive engineering expertise will add value to all stages of the projects Symal Structures undertakes from refining structural designs to improving project outcomes in programming and costs. “Symal Structures has a positive team environment and I’ve got an opportunity to work alongside an eager team and pitch to clients – stepping out of my technical engineering guy comfort zone and getting and pitching the benefits of working with Symal Structures to clients – safety, quality, cost competitiveness and program performance all rolled into one.”
James’ construction experience and engineering expertise will help grow the Symal Structures business and continue delivering on its reputation for high-performance, high-quality construction projects. He will oversee the entire engineering process as Symal Structures transitions into larger, more diverse projects with its clients.
James understands the nature of the construction industry, where every project is unique. “Different clients have different priorities around costs and time so it’s all about tuning in to their needs and engaging with all relevant stakeholders. I’m working closely with Symal Structures’ structures team finding balanced solutions to often complicated processes.”
James is making the most of his engineering experience and knowledge at Symal Structures. As an engineering athlete, he’s using his previous training and collaboration techniques to succeed.
Welcome to the team James.