To mark International Women’s Day, one of Anglian Water’s senior engineers Alison Taylor tells us what inspired her to start her career and why we need more women in engineering.Alison-Taylor

I got into engineering because I have always been interested in how things work and how they are put together. I always wanted to know why.

I was fortunate to have a great role model in my father and also my female Physics teacher at secondary school, who encouraged me and made me realise early on what a great choice of career engineering would be.

Women bring a different perspective to engineering and we tend to have a positive impact on a team. We are logical, fair and look to work with a group rather than dictate, bringing the team with us whilst never being afraid to put our hands up and challenge.

Anglian Water took me on as an engineer in 1996. They helped me to develop my all round experience to obtain both my Chartership in Mechanical Engineering, which led to my current role as a Project Delivery Manager.

I was able to work in various different sections of the business, from working in a fabricating work shop to carrying out construction and commissioning as well as designing and leading a major project to successful completion. It has always been a challenging environment and being an engineer continues to be a career I am really proud of.

It’s essential for girls to have a range of role models to help them see the breadth of careers available to them and to understand how rewarding engineering can be. I’m really excited to get involved with events like Women in Engineering to help inspire the future generation of female engineers and talk about the career prospects for young engineers.

MK4_0101By speaking to girls I want to help them understand what engineering actually is. Hopefully I will inspire the budding female engineer within them so that they work hard in the various subjects that will start them on the path to a great career.

As a career it has such varied opportunities from design in an office environment or working on site physically building or overseeing the construction and commissioning of a solution, through to being a Project Delivery Manager who leads the project team through all of these stages.

Around a third of Anglian Water’s workforce is due to retire in the next 10 years, taking their engineering expertise with them and we need a plan for how we’re going to replace them.

It is absolutely vital we fill the skills gap, and I want women to play their part in that. By fulfilling their engineering ambitions I believe they can help to transform the water industry.

AAnglian_Water_Paper_Tower_MATTHEW_POWER_PHOTOGRAPHY002t Anglian Water we’re sponsoring the Greater Peterborough University Technical College to help find the engineers of the future. I spent the day there recently helping with our world record attempt to build the tallest paper structure ever made from paper. I hope this challenge inspired both the boys and girls who took part to consider this career path.

If you think engineering is for you, there are courses in our region and we’re on the look out for apprentices and trainees as well. Visit to find out more.

Posted by anglianblog