UGL Project Manager, Bertus Heese, focuses on overseeing maintenance shutdowns in power stations. Bertus’s exceptional attention to detail played a crucial role in his recent project, which involved managing a staggering 80,000 working hours and coordinating a peak staffing level of up to 300 team members over six weeks.
What is your role at UGL?
“I manage shutdowns, specifically on power stations to ensure reliability of electricity supply. As a Project Manager, I am responsible for overseeing and coordinating outage projects. My main objective is to ensure the maintenance activities are carried out safely, efficiently, and effectively. My role involves tasks such as planning and scheduling outages, coordinating with various teams and stakeholders, managing resources and budgets, overseeing safety protocols, and monitoring project progress.”
What was involved in your recent project?
“I managed the scheduled outage to perform maintenance work on a power station located 230 km southwest of Brisbane in Queensland. The station consists of two units, each with a capacity of 425.5MW, and it operates by burning coal sourced from a mine adjacent to the power plant. At the time, one of the units had been shut down specifically for this maintenance work, while the other unit continued to generate power.
The scope of work for this project encompassed several tasks. It included providing scaffold access for the necessary maintenance activities, conducting a thorough inspection of pressure parts, performing repairs on any identified issues, inspecting vessels, and repairing or replacing valves as needed.
The planned duration for the shutdown was approximately six weeks, with a six-day workweek and 11 to 12-hour shifts. This timeline allowed us to effectively manage the workload and ensure that all necessary maintenance tasks are executed meticulously.
Overall, the project is vital for maintaining the power station's operational integrity, optimising performance, and ensuring a reliable electricity supply to the region.”
What advice would you give someone starting their career at UGL?
“UGL is a large company involved in multiple industries. Take advantage of this diversity and explore the various career opportunities available within the organisation. Be open to new experiences and challenges as this can help broaden your skillset and expand your knowledge. Remember, starting your career at UGL is an opportunity for growth and development. By embracing the company's diversity, prioritising safety, seeking learning opportunities, building relationships, being adaptable, and taking initiative, you can set yourself up for a successful and rewarding career journey at UGL.”