Interview Leslie Pond E&I Engineer Neptune

Interview Leslie Pond E&I Engineer Neptune

Can you tell us what your job as an E&I Engineer enhances?

Sure. I work in engineering and projects divisions. We engineer and implement plant changes on offshore gas platforms. We identify problems and challenges and find solutions for them. Our scope entails the design verification and defining the scope requirement for issue to the engineering bureau, for the creation of detailed engineering work packs for offshore project execution. We then monitor the quality of the project from design to implementation and commissioning.
Neptune is predominantly a gas company. We are specialized in gas exploration and production for sale to distribution companies. You could say that within the energy branch we are the ‘bad boys’, since we work with traditional fossil fuels. Neptune purchased the gas division from Engie and have the industry vision to be the number one independent gas producer in the world so there are exciting times ahead.

What is the best part about your job?

I like challenges. It’s important to me to be able to physically look for the problems and solve them. Since I have the tenacity of a bulldog, we solve about a 100% of all problems, as in this industry any mistake could have serious consequences. This is a matter of continuous learning and benefitting from the combined experience of our co-workers. My motto – if you fall down, you get up again and take on the next challenge.

How did you get in contact with Selectum?

During one of my former contracts in Nigeria, some of my colleagues were already in touch with Selectum’s Mark van Zundert. They spoke highly of Selectum so I was curious to see what they could do for me. I enjoy travelling and the challenges of my profession. One of my colleagues from the project in Nigeria informed me about an open E&I Engineer position at Engie. At the time I was still living in South Africa, and working on a Saipem FPSO rebuild project in Angola.
As a family, we were considering emigration to Spain where I would take on a rotational contract in Korea or Indonesia.
Therefore, when the opportunity for the contract in The Netherlands came about it was the perfect alternative and an easy choice process.

What are your experiences about the collaboration with Selectum?

Once we were in touch, it was kind of a ‘quick job’: after two days, I flew over to the Netherlands for an interview at Engie.
Selectum informed me that my interview was successful and that I would start a month later.
Selectum made the rest of the process very simple by arranging all the required documentation and processes for my family and I.
I think Selectum has a very professional approach with a friendly atmosphere that makes you feel at home, which is important to expats.
I would say that Selectum makes you feel like a team member and not just another number on their books. I do not want to go into details, but I have had ‘different’ experiences with other job agencies.
Mark van Zundert comes to visit me at Neptune regularly and never forgets to deliver a birthday cake 

What developments do you see in your field of work?

There is obviously a massive move to renewable energy as an alternative to oil and gas as energy sources.
The Oil & Gas industry is very active in process of cleaning up its image and doing everything in its power to minimize the impact on the environment, with the objective of being a viable energy source.
The future of the Oil & Gas industry is a far more controlled industry, with mainly the large and efficient plants operated and many of the smaller and less efficient plants shut-in and removed.
The Dutch sector is a typical example of this: most of the projects focus to either cleaning up, removal or making existing plants more efficient. There is comparably not much gas left in the Dutch sector and the exploration and production is strictly regulated.
In other parts of the world the Oil & Gas industry is still booming: USA, Middle East, North Africa and many more. If I’m honest, I would go where ever the next job takes me. I love a challenge, and I would certainly find it in these countries.
If you would ask me what is more interesting to me – the industry or the travelling – I would choose the industry. My profession is fascinating and very satisfying to me. Traveling is a bonus.

Would you recommend Selectum to others in your network? If yes: why?

Absolutely. Why? Because of their professional approach and flexibility. Selectum makes you feel at home and is always willing to assist with problems of any kind.
An added positive is the friendly staff and the consideration to make your family feel part of their family.

What’s on your agenda for the rest of the day?

Today I am busy with the less glamorous part of my job: writing procedures for decommissioning of platforms.
My best days would be when I go offshore at the end of a project and witness a well-engineered, constructed and commissioned project.
I come from a commissioning background so it is always rewarding to see a safe and successful project handed over to production, it will always be a thrill.

Any famous last words from you?

I like to approach everything in a positive way. There is not a lot of negativity out there to combat and I am lucky enough to be the person who really enjoys his job.

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