Tips & Tricks

4 Secret Tips for Graduate Engineers Seeking Employment

I have employed and worked with some amazing young graduate engineers. When we look for graduate structural engineers to employ at Cornell Engineers we use the standard job search pages that you already know about, ie Seek and Indeed.

Every time we advertise a vacant position for a structural engineer we are flooded with applications. Our priority is shortlisting applications by removing the applications that do not show a determined approach to gaining our attention.

If you want to make it past round one of the job application process, here are my four secret tips for graduate civil and structural engineers seeking a graduate or junior structural engineer employment role in their first years out of university:

  1. Think like a business
  2. Clean up your resume
  3. Work really hard all the way through university
  4. Choose experience over pay
Tips & Tricks

Hey building industry lets get metric

So if you’re in the building industry in Australia you’ve probably noticed by now that the sizing and spacing of structural members aren’t exactly metric. I mean, we’re working in millimetres and all but have you noticed we still bow to imperial measurements in nearly all structural framing?

Here is how pervasive the imperial system is in our construction industry:

  • 75mm x 50mm studs are really 3 inch x 2 inch studs in imperial
  • (70mm x 45mm studs are just the seasoned timber equivalent of 75 x 50)
  • Roof frames are at 900mm (3 feet) or 600mm (2 feet) centres
  • Studs are at 450mm (1.5 feet) or 600mm (2 feet) centres
  • Residential wall heights are commonly 2.4m (8 feet), 2.7m (9 feet) or 3.0m (10 feet)
  • Windows are 900mm (3 feet), 1200mm (4 feet), 1500mm (5 feet) etc wide

The list goes on.

Why are we hanging on to these old imperial dimensions when we turned metric many, many years ago? Wouldn’t it be easier for set out, planning and ordering to be working in metric?

Our materials are made better and are stronger and more consistently than ‘the old days’ when these systems were first put in place.

  • Why can’t studs be placed at 500mm centres instead of 450mm centres?
  • Why don’t we have trusses at 1000mm (1 metre) centres?
  • Why don’t we have wall heights at 2.5 metres and 3.0m standard?
  • Why don’t windows come in 500mm width increments to suit metric stud centres?

So I’m calling out to industry, to suppliers, to product technical advisors and other structural engineers. Let’s make the move to metric in the construction industry. It doesn’t have to be overnight, but when we learn to work in metric numbers, in easy multiples of 10, 50 and 100 I think we’ll make it easier for ourselves, use our modern materials more efficiently and finally close the door on outdated imperial standards.

Tips & Tricks

How does a structural engineer check engineering drawings

Join Matt Cornell as he checks the drawings for a single storey concrete masonry (bessa block) home to be built in a cyclone region. He goes through the process of checking a set of structural engineering drawings with some tips for checking and good construction.

Today we’re going to go through the process that I normally
follow when I’m checking a set of engineering plans.

So a job comes into – a set of plans come into the office and they’ve asked us to do the engineering.

One of my engineers has done up some engineering drawings.

Here you can see the engineering, the AutoCAD file. They’ve set up a form 15 ready for me to fill in. I’m doing the checking.

So a lot of the works already been done. There’s a checking folder already as you can see, so the first thing I’m going to do is to check to see what the client has asked for.

Tips & Tricks

Structural Engineering in the News 29 June 2019

Every week Google sends me a Google Alert for the search term “structural engineer” with the latest news articles featuring our world of structural engineering.

Let’s go through the articles together and see what’s happening in our local world of structural engineering.

Links are below the video.

Tips & Tricks

Do you need underpinning?

Do you think your house needs underpinning?

Is it because your house has cracks in it? Is it because your neighbour had their house underpinned? Is it because you don’t have time and you need your house fixed NOW? Is it because some random salesperson said you do?

It’s time to have your house assessed properly before you weigh up the options for underpinnings and house repairs.