Building Services Engineering is vital and everywhere - it has a real impact on people’s lives
The buildings in which we live, work and spend our leisure time can have a direct affect on our health and wellbeing. On a personal level we feel the effect of good temperature control, ventilation and humidity control. Try working in a warm room with little airflow and staying awake! But it’s about more than comfort - these issues can directly affect our health. In the last two years, everyone has learned the importance of ventilation in stopping the transmission of contagious diseases. In shops, refrigeration systems contribute to keeping food fresh. Have you ever thought about how fire escape routes in large buildings are planned? Or about how the sprinkler system in your school or college works? By designing, installing and maintaining systems such as these Building Services Engineers help keep you safe.
About 40% of all the UK’s energy is used within buildings. So good design for energy efficiency can make a real difference to our carbon emissions and energy costs. You can play a genuinely important role in helping to make our lives more sustainable. Sustainability and the drive to net zero is a way of life for Building Services Engineers.
Building Services Engineers are creative
Creativity is about using your imagination or original ideas to create something. It isn’t confined to the arts and it isn’t just about moments of inspiration. Creativity is applied in all areas of life and can be the result of applying knowledge to a situation in different ways. Engineers use their knowledge of how the world works, particularly their understanding of science and mathematics, to create new artefacts and processes to solve problems or to improve processes. Engineering is a creative profession.
During a building’s design phase Building Services Engineers use sketches, computer models and calculations to find the best solutions for that particular building. Every building is different and lots of different things need to be taken into account. For example, the direction that the building faces, the materials used to construct it and its interaction with the local climate will need to be modelled and optimised to produce the most sustainable and productive environment. But as well as looking at how to make the building work as a shell Building Services Engineers develop the internal engineering systems to make the building “come alive”.
It's only by being creative in applying technical and business knowledge that Building Services Engineers can continually improve our built environment and keep their customers happy.
Work with lots of different people
As a Building Services Engineer you’ll work with teams of people from a wide variety of backgrounds and expertise: business leaders, architects, other engineers, builders, manufacturers and – possibly most importantly of all – the people who will actually live and work in the environments you create.
Design consultancies are the biggest employers of graduate Building Services Engineers. But they also, for example, work in:
- Building contractors.
- Manufacturers of specialist equipment, such as lifts.
- Local authorities and government departments.
- Factories and power stations.
Building services engineers work all around the world on a huge range of projects, adding to the variety of people you could be meeting. Graduates in particular work on projects around the world; the UK, Dubai, America, China and India are just a few examples.
Problem-solving skills are a number one priority if you want to make a career as a Building Services Engineer.
It’s well rewarded
Engineers are in demand and are well paid. The average starting salary for graduates in engineering & technology subjects is £27,000 – over 20% more than the average for all graduates. On average engineering apprentices earn over double the national minimum apprenticeship wage.
Chartered Engineers may earn up to £50,000 a year and senior managers over £70,000 a year. Some employers also provide additional benefits, including a company car or car allowance and private health insurance.