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27 Apr 2020

From the Field to the Back Office

Author Nick Ray, EIT, Manager of Engineering Projects and Technology Implementation Engineering and Inspection Team

Where’s my luggage?  What’s the weather going to be in (pick a spot on the map)?  PPE, check.  Fall protection, check. Waders? Field tools? Drone? Batteries? Check, check, check, and check!  These are just some of the reoccurring questions you ask yourself when you inspect railroad bridges, fly drones, provide top-notch engineering services, and continuously strive to innovate your workflow and delivery of those services for a living.

And yet, with all the travel, varying work environments, scheduling priorities, reporting deadlines, and working with a constant learning curve (the name of the game when you’re continually pushing new innovative ways of doing things), you’d never hear a hem or ha from the ARE Bridge Inspection Team. What you see, however, is a dedication to meet the customer expectations and get the job done on time and budget. Those are the type of individuals I get to work with. Every. Single. Day. World-class professionals, drone pilots, engineers, and dare-I-say friends who believe in each other and put the priority of getting the job done ahead of everything else.  (Except for family and their safety, of course!) Trying my best not to sound cliché, we really do have each other’s backs.  From the field to the back-office, everyone knows what each other is working on, and everyone can count on each other to help out as needed.

One of the most impressive attributes of this team is their willingness to continually push the boundaries of how we perform our inspections and engineering projects. Whether it’s incorporating new technology like drones, phase one cameras, or integrating ARE’s new AREviewä Rail Management Software (AREviewä RMP) mobile app into our field operations. The entire team embraces a mindset of continuous improvement.

It’s this forward-thinking, open-minded, and progressive attitude that helps differentiate who ARE is, and the level of engineering capability we bring to the table. It empowers us to provide a reliable, productive, and resourceful workflow from start to finish that results in more than just our inspection capabilities and backend deliverables.  Our clients get the most accessible, intuitive perspective of findings available, giving them the ability to translate our findings into a bridge’s “true” health of system.

The ARE Bridge Inspection Team is in a constant state of communication, and we are constantly learning from one another.  Everyone’s focus is on making sure the services we provide are aligned with the customers’ expectations and consistent throughout the organization.  The culture within the team is all about respect and mutual admiration. There’s a lot to learn. Let alone lead.

I feel incredibly fortunate to be part of this team and to have the opportunity to work alongside an exceptional group of skilled individuals. They say that a company’s core values, skills for need, and culture have more to do with its success than anything else.  If this is true, which I believe it is, then ARE is destined for success.

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