Q&A With Brindley Engineering’s Talent Acquisition Manager, Mark Manalad
We sat down with Mark Manalad, Brindley Engineering’s Talent Acquisition Manager, to learn about current market trends and how to navigate a job search for engineering jobs in Chicago. This Q&A gives great insight on the trends of today’s competitive market for engineering jobs in Chicago.
Q: What does Brindley Engineering do?
MM: The typical answer is that we are an engineering firm that analyzes, designs, and advises on the challenges of aging, mission-critical infrastructure, for capital and maintenance projects, reliability initiatives, and construction solutions. But…the cool thing we do is – we give opportunity. We give a variety of projects to our engineers – it’s not just bridges or siloed projects. Our work is diverse and multi-faceted. So what do we do? We give opportunity.
Q: What trends are you seeing in the industry right now?
MM: Everyone is posting ‘we’re hiring!’ – it’s everywhere. There is a need across the board. It’s competitive for both job seekers and employers. Covid has been a catalyst for people to move, change employers, and even change careers. Engineers at Brindley Engineering will wear different hats and get a lot of variety. For more beginning engineers – we don’t look at years of experience, we look at aptitude and excelling at the task at hand. We are not afraid to have a 1 or 2–year employee manage projects. We put our people in places where they can excel.
Q: What roles / areas of expertise are needed to keep up with those trends?
MM: We are looking to fill Mechanical engineering jobs with candidates who have 3-10 years of experience; Electrical Engineering jobs with 5+ years of experience; Instrumentation Designers with 5+ years of experience; Schedulers with 5+ years of experience; and a Chemical (Process) Engineer right out of school. We are looking for people who want opportunity in their careers and who are open minded to a variety of opportunities.
Q: What is BE’s culture like?
MM: We have a welcoming culture, but more importantly our engineers will learn right away that they have a voice. We want to know what their goals are and what they want to do in their career. We want to nourish and grow those ambitions. We invest in our people through 1:1s, engagement surveys, multiple committees, regular town halls, etc.. We want to hear from our employees and at times we lean on ‘over-communicating’ versus ‘under-communicating’ with them. We provide training and tools to help our people get where they want to go in their careers.
Q: What questions should candidates ask you?
MM: Whether it’s entry level engineering jobs or senior mechanical engineer jobs or anything in between it’s a hot market – if candidates want tips on how to interview just call me! We look for people with an open mind who are not close minded to different opportunities. Field work versus office, for example. Are they leading projects now? If not, do they want to but are not being given the opportunity to? We are open to discussing career paths and opportunities with our candidates.
Q: How are you different from other employers in the industry?
MM: Our size and our goal to provide a career path. We’re looking to find where our people will excel and capitalize on that. We are creating different opportunities based on the strengths of our employees.
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