A graduate of Aberdeen University, Julie gained a Bachelor’s degree in Law and a Diploma in Legal practice before deciding that her career path lay in HSEQ. Prior to joining Ramco, she spent 12 years working in various HSEQ roles within the construction and oil and gas industries, latterly with Quensh Specialists (consultancy) as an HSEQ Advisor involved in the day to day HSEQ operational requirements for a number of clients. She is a Graduate Member of the Institution of Occupational Safety & Health (IOSH) and has a passion for practical and behavioural safety aspects, specialising in vibration management, environmental awareness and management, machinery safety, and fire safety – something that will serve her well in her new role at Ramco, where a particular area of focus will be in building a positive safety culture across the business.
Here we find out more about Julie and what makes her tick.
Q. You qualified with a degree in law and a diploma in legal practice, so how did you end up working in HSEQ?
A. Legal practice is fascinating academically but in practical terms, it was not for me. Instead, I looked for a profession where I could use my knowledge of the legal system in a positive and practical way. I wholeheartedly believe no one should be hurt at work. A business needs to protect its people from harm and itself from legal action. In supporting an organisation through HSEQ delivery I can make a real difference to its performance as well as challenging myself, both academically and practically, whilst working closely with people at all levels of an organisation. The mix of ‘document-based thinking’ and ‘hands-on problem solving’ gives good variety and a role I am passionate about.
Q. HSEQ is a fundamental function within any organisation and safety, in particular, comes out as one of the main drivers and areas of focus. In what way do you feel you can make a difference?
A. Ensuring delivery of product and service without causing harm to people or the environment is the fundamental basis for the majority of organisations, and simply put the HSEQ function is there to support just this. By supporting the Ramco Management and Operational teams in continually developing the necessary processes and behaviours, I hope to ensure the business can continue to deliver excellence in terms of service and safety performance.
Q. What has been the stand out moments for you in your HSEQ career so far?
A. I have been in a number of challenging roles and working as a consultant I have seen a large number of organisations with very diverse HSEQ challenges. Stand out moments generally come when I am able to help an organisation find a solution to their HSEQ needs that is bespoke and fits their organisation well. I have supported companies through the entire cycle – from having nothing in place to implementation and certification of a full integrated HSEQ system. In contrast, I have helped review established management systems following changes to standards and been able to give experienced HSEQ professionals a new way to look at their systems. Each challenge is rewarding in its own way.
The work I have already done with Ramco in a consultancy context has been rewarding. We have managed to identify areas requiring development and put plans in place to achieve it. But most one of the most exciting things for me at Ramco has been the engagement with the workforce and watching the culture and people develop.
Q. Outside of work what are your hobbies and interests, and do you think your passion for HSEQ was influenced by/or has an affect on these interests?
A. Outside of work I am a bit of a sport and adventure fiend. Mostly I spend my time on or around horses – training, competing…but mostly shovelling manure! Training 600kgs of animal with its own opinion is something of a risk sport but learning how to recognise and manage that risk is something that tuition and experience has taught me. I like a challenge, I like adrenaline and I like to see risky situations managed successfully to allow for development, progress and achievement. I guess this part of me suits working in a challenging HSEQ environment where ensuring good risk management is critical.
Q. What is it about the Ramco business that made you want to join?
A. I had the opportunity to support Ramco through my work with Quensh, which means I had a good idea of what I was letting myself in for. The decision to join the team here was not made lightly, but ultimately the business is innovative and fast-paced with a senior management team who are fully supportive of the HSEQ Function and have a desire to drive improvement. I have seen investment not only in people and systems but also in technology and engineering solutions to HSEQ challenges. This makes Ramco an exciting place to work with an opportunity to really make a difference and be part of change and development. Ultimately, I feel I am surrounded by good people at Ramco and that is key when working in an HSEQ role.