In this series, we aim to feature a particular individual ITS (UK) Member who will talk through what they do for their company and detail their daily work schedule, whilst also offering some advice and reflection on their career thus far. Read on to hear more from an individual of one of our Executive Members, Cubic – Jessica Ramji. Discover how she got started within Cubic, what motivates and challenges her and finally, what advice she offers to those looking to start a career in the industry.
Tell us about yourself, your background and how you got started in the industry? What brought you to your role and led you to make this career choice?
I studied BA Honours in Business with IT and started working in procurement. After some time I moved to contract management in the Technology sector, and after my successful support for the mobilisation for the new Traffic Signals contract in London I was promoted to Contract Service Manager. I then progressed my career into a more senior role with Cubic that took advantage of my management and technical experience. This was an exciting challenge which has enabled me to make further career progression.
What is your current role?
I am currently a Business development project manager with Cubic Transportation Systems.
Take us through a typical day and what that involves. What projects are you working on (dependent on what you can share of course)? What are your current priorities?
My typical day includes developing and bringing in new opportunities for the business and additional works for projects that we are currently managing. Currently I am leading on projects for Cubic that support TfL. This includes quoting for the works, planning, managing subcontractors and winning the customer. I am the main contact with our client for the Traffic Signals contract, and work closely with many different stakeholders both internally and externally daily. Additionally, I manage work streams for other projects within this area. The project work I lead on is typically technology driven with elements of civils and ground works also. Continuously building customer relationship, and working with the team to support bids.
Is there anything specific that motivates you through the day?
One of the best motivators I have is the satisfaction of managing the successful delivery of a portfolio of complex projects to time and budget. I also greatly enjoy mentoring and training others so that I can share my knowledge and experience. I love working with the diverse range of people within the team and ensuring we support each other on the way.
What do you most enjoy about your role and what do you find the most challenging?
I enjoy building strong relationships within the Cubic team and our customers. I also enjoy stepping outside my role and seeing the bigger picture as I support progressing the business for new opportunities. I enjoy the business success as a direct consequence of my work.
I find difficult stakeholders challenging but in a good way; facing different personalities has helped me develop as a trusted manager. Short-notice changes on project scope that could potentially jeopardise the delivery scope are quite challenging and have allowed me to develop flexibility and adaptability within my own work practices.
What advice would you give someone who is considering seeking a career in this role and within this industry?
Highway works and traffic technologies are quite a male-dominated industry, so I would advise women to not feel threatened, believe your value and stand your position with a positive mindset and a can-do attitude. I would also advise that all future female leaders will support each other.
I would encourage more women to think about a career in Highway works and traffic technologies. There are some amazing roles out there with great opportunities which women should go for.
Finally, what do you know now that you wish you knew when you first started out your career?
I wish I had had a better understanding of the industry and increased commercial awareness. I also know now that even if there is something that you don’t know or have never done you can always train yourself and learn.
Finally, I did not realise when I started that this industry is continuously evolving daily with new technology been developed at a fast pace, its always good to stay in touch with the up to date ideas and changing technologies.