A day in the life of a Lead Engineer in Central London

- Jorge Estelles Miranda


Jorge is one our lead engineers, responsible for the M&E services in four prestigious office buildings within Central London.

Jorge has been working for Sowga for four years and counting, feeling he has learnt a lot during his time with us, maturing both professionally and personally.

Starting off at Sowga as one of the multi-skilled members of a well-functioning team, Jorge's hard work and commitment along with his technical abilities, professionalism and problem solving skills saw him progress to Lead Engineer of his own team and since then he has gone from strength to strength.

His roles and responsibilities centre around making sure that the engineering systems of the buildings are in the best working condition possible.

To do this, Jorge manages a team comprising of four multi-skilled engineers, a contract support administrator and a fabric engineer all working collaboratively to ensure optimal service delivery across his portfolio of both landlord and occupier areas.

Jorge monitors the compliance of engineering systems to ensure all statutory compliance is scheduled in and up to date while also supervising all non-statutory contract compliance, with these works including planned preventative maintenance, reactive or quoted works and water treatment tasks.

Jorge is always developing his team and their ways of working, putting time into researching and understanding innovations and energy saving techniques that can improve his buildings with the ultimate goal of moving as close to being zero carbon as possible.

day in life of Sowga estimator

Even though Jorge's sites have been unoccupied for the most part during lockdown, the maintenance of equipment has still been essential. Work has mostly been business as usual for Jorge and his team, however this time has allowed them to utilise the opportunity of carrying out works within the currently unoccupied spaces that would normally be restricted to out of hours.

These opportunities do not come without their challenges, with there being a higher demand of planning and resource to keep the domestic water systems healthy. The importance of mitigating these problems has become emphasised due to the low turnover in the water tanks heightening the risk of bacteria and legionella growth due to stagnant water.

As Jorge is responsible for a number of different buildings, travelling between them is part of his role, and for him it has been a strange few months seeing London streets so empty.

However, Jorge has loved it! Admitting he's not the biggest fan of crowded places at the best of times, it has also made the cycle to and from work safer than ever for him.

COVID-19 has been a life changing experience for most of us, with Jorge recognising the need for HVAC system strategies to change across commercial buildings to stop the spread of the virus.

Jorge has acted on this with projects around modifying BMS strategies for ventilation and filtration systems for fresh air intakes, having to overcome a number of challenges due to the financial, planification and engineering mobilisation demands involved.

Jorge puts a lot of focus into ensuring that communication is always maintained to a very high standard, having numerous video conferences with clients and the Sowga leadership team throughout the week.

He keeps all stakeholders informed of the performance of his sites, keeping them up to date with M&E asset performance but also using these opportunities to plan projects around HVAC and BMS modifications as well as emphasising the importance of effective water treatment programmes.

Passionate about his personal development, Jorge recently completed his ILM Level 3 in Leadership and Management as well as IOSH Managing Safely and in doing so learned some excellent skills which he has been able to use effectively in leading his engineering team.

To relax after work, Jorge goes home and if the weather allows him, he sits in his garden and has a nice cold beer with his fiancé.

As a team leader, Jorge finds huge reward in feeling that his team members trust each other and are working in a happy and safe environment, while also finding satisfaction in receiving positive feedback from his clients and occupiers regarding the teams service provision across his portfolio.

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