Hi, I’m Isla, and I’m a surveyor.

I moved down here from Scotland when I came to the local university to study Surveying . As part of the course, I had to do some Intern work with a construction company and I when I completed my degree, they took me on full time.

There are several types of surveyors, for example, a ‘ Quantity surveyor ’ is different to a ‘ Structural surveyor ’ and my role is to survey the ground of a building site before work starts and during too.

I draw up reports about the Land topography (how flat or hilly it is), the soil types and condition, what was there before, where pipes and cables (services) are likely to be and generally gather as much information as possible.

I really enjoy my work; it is so varied. One day I could be examining old maps and local records and the next, I could be examining a Drone survey . I work very closely with the  Groundworkers , as my findings can greatly affect their operations.It is variety that keeps me so interested in my job. I work both on site and in the office, and that suits me ‘down to the ground’ (excuse the pun!)

I love tech and this type of surveying is packed with it. Not only do we use drones but Radio detection and Ground penetrating radar to locate things underground. We even use  Lasers and Total stations to determine the shape and Undulations of the Site and even satellite imagery. All this data is then fed into Building Information Modelling (BIM) and Computer Assisted Design (CAD) software to build a picture of the site conditions.

As if that wasn’t enough, I also must find out what lives and grows on a site. Rare species of plants and animals need to be protected, and we can only do that if we know they are there. I once found three of the rarest bird species on just one site, that was pretty crazy!

I have no idea why I chose this path, maybe because I wanted to shock my mum by entering a “man’s world”, she was old fashioned with her views but not anymore, she now sees how happy I am!