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Helen Richardson, Technical Director

Helen leads a team that delivers highways and transport design services including transport planning, road safety and highway improvements.

Helen champions a culture of improvement, implementing new working practices that streamline decision-making, as well as long-term sustainable solutions to minimise risk. She coordinates lessons learned from past projects, and applies changes to improve future projects, delivering outcomes for her clients that are focussed on value for money.

Hear from Helen on how she got where she is today, and what motivates her:

When did you realise you wanted to work in transport?

I was interested in town planning and did a year in industry at South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive in Sheffield during my degree, which I really enjoyed. It made me think about specialising in transport rather than mainstream town planning.

What did you study?

I did a BA (Hons) and post graduate diploma in Town Planning at Newcastle University and then went on to do an MSc (ENG) in Transport Planning and Traffic Engineering at Leeds University.

Why did you choose WSP?

I had been working in transport planning and consultancy at another firm for 13 years, and was thinking about changing jobs, when I was approached about the role of commission manager at WSP. After meeting the company a couple of times it was clear that it was a really good match and I knew that the company and their values suited me well. I was later invited to meet the client at their office and have never looked back.

What do you most enjoy about the job?

There is a lot of variety in my role and it stretches me in a lot of ways, from looking after client relationships to solving issues affecting the team and managing health and safety. I also get involved in bidding for contracts and projects. My time working in a client facing office in the public sector, representing the business every day, has been very interesting.

What are you passionate about?

It’s very important to me that we deliver a really good service for our clients. I want to make sure that the team is recognised for the excellent service it provides, and for creating valuable opportunities for other parts of the business. 

How has the company helped you develop in your career?

I’ve been given a number of opportunities that allow me to develop, from being involved in bid writing, to managing a second framework. I have never felt that my current role would be my only role in the business. It is refreshing that I can discuss what I want to do next, and how the business might help me get there.