- Hiba Almodaris
- Employed since May 2013
BSc Mechanical Engineering
Can you briefly describe the business areas that you work in and your primary tasks?
I work in a project dedicated to redeveloping one of our existing assets that is suffering from subsidence which is called Tyra Redevelopment Project. It is a complex project that combines both greenfield and brownfield scopes and is divided over several countries in the world. My role in the project is to be a Maintenance and Integrity Engineer. One of my main tasks is the development of the inspection program for the new facilities, which is a great experience because it requires the collaboration of different parts of the company to deliver this program successfully.
What are the most exciting and challenging tasks in your job?
First, the level of risk associated with our business is higher than many other sectors, and the inspection program is a critical part of ensuring the safety of our colleagues offshore. A gas leak caused by an undetected or unmitigated corrosion could potentially lead to injuries or loss of lives. I think realizing that we have that kind of impact even from the comfort of the office is a great responsibility.
Second, it takes a team to execute a project of this grand scale successfully. We have to engage and align with many different departments, inside and outside the project. Otherwise, we are risking misalignment with the rest of the business, double dipping, or even worse, leaving some critical tasks undone. While this stakeholder management is very important, it can also be time-consuming and difficult to manage at times.
How are you using your education in your current position?
I studied Mechanical Engineering in Texas. While I must admit that personally I never had to solve any differential equations since I graduated, I did apply many of the skills I was taught in university throughout my career. Having the scientific foundation from university made it much easier to understand the complex oil and gas process.
It’s not just the science that matters, but also the soft skills that I developed through university came very much in handy later on. For instance, skills such as project management, technical writing, public speaking, and teamwork are very crucial in paving the way for career success. If I am allowed to give a piece of advice to the students, it would be to cherish all kinds of learning experiences they get from university, because sometimes you can’t recognize the value of something the professor is making you do, but years later you will be very thankful that you did it.
What are the three most important things to you in your job at Total?
The first one is safety which is a core value of Total. I think it is the norm for anyone working in Total to answer such a question by mentioning safety first, and that’s one of the things that I really like about working here. The work we do offshore is very critical and calls for high safety measures. But this high regard for safety is not only out in the field but also in the office.
The second one is career development. Total is one of the oil and gas majors with affiliates all over the world. This provides the opportunity to grow by working in different places and with different teams. For instance, I have been in the company for over four years now, and during that time I have had roles in the Onshore Operations Center, in a project, and the asset. Each role had an important contribution to my learning curve and career development.
The third is making a difference. To me, it is important to feel like there is a purpose to what I am doing. Working in Total and the Tyra Redevelopment Project allows me to be part of supplying the energy of the future. Tyra processes 90% of the Danish gas, which is obviously a pretty big deal in Denmark. Redeveloping Tyra will ensure that this will carry on and will provide 1,5 million Danish homes with energy for the next 20 years.
Why is Total an attractive company for you to work in?
I think it is important that when somebody asks you where you work, you can answer with pride. I certainly feel proud to say that I work for Total. It was successful in generating revenue, and maintaining an attractive portfolio, while being the only major that didn’t suffer from any redundancies, in a low oil price environment. At the same time, they are a responsible energy major that understands the climate change challenge and is working towards increasing the portfolio of more environmentally friendly fuels. I like to be part of a company that cares about its employees and the environment.
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