Meet Stephen, Lead Electrical Engineer Data Centres

Stephen started his career as an Electrical Engineer in the water industry sixteen years ago. Until he started working in the data centre sector, Stephen worked on projects all over the UK, with a range of project value from £100k to £100m. Since he started working in the data centre sector four years ago the value of the projects has risen to over £600m and the projects have moved internationally from Finland to South Africa to Germany. In his own words “No two days are alike working on data centres.” Curious about what keeps his work interesting and the variety of his work? Then keep on reading!
Stephen Yewdall

The scale of the data centre projects is what always amazes me. It is like a village or a small town is arriving to build a data centre!

Stephen YewdallLead Electrical Engineer Data Centres

Scale of delivery

We have been involved in the emergence and development of data centres from the pioneer phase. Throughout the revolution, our aim has been to convert client investments in data centres - anywhere in the world - into a reliable and profitable end result. “The scale of the data centre projects is what always amazes me. I remember working on my first £1m project where there were around 20-30 people working on site and thinking it was massive. Now I am working on hyperscale data centre projects of £600m with more than 1500 people working on site. It is like a village or a small town is arriving to build a data centre!”

Cutting edge design tools

Within our organisation, we work at the forefront of new and innovative solutions. “With the adoption of BIM tools across the industry it is very satisfying to design a data centre ‘on paper’ and then 12 months into the project you are seeing your design exactly as you have drawn it constructed on site. Many times, I have arrived on site for the first time when the construction is already very advanced. Amazingly, I already know my way around the buildings because I have spent so much time working on them in the design model.”

Up for a challenge

“I have worked in the building services sector at a previous consultancy. The work was okay and occasionally it had some aspects that would present a bit of a technical challenge. When working on data centres, you are regularly presented with challenging design aspects on every project. This means you must do the engineering and make sure you are able to justify the design decisions you've made when you are challenged by the client or the contractor. I know that I am a better engineer because of working in this sector and I find working through these technical challenges invigorating.

Things as simple as: working to a different set of regulations for a design in another country, compliance with SEVESO regulations due to the quantity of diesel stored on a client’s site and the variance in external ambient temperatures, compared with your home country, all have to be accounted for within your design where you would not normally have anticipated this.”

Lead from the front

By following your curiosity and own interest, you will discover new areas of expertise to dive in, new roles to grow in and new colleagues to learn from. “When I was first given the opportunity to take the lead on my own data centre project four years ago, I was a bit apprehensive at first. Now I have completed a couple of big hyperscale projects I am confident that I can get the design completed to the project timescales and that I have the expertise to overcome any technical challenge.”

Do you want to develop yourself?

Then our global data centre competence team is the place to be.

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