Employee interview

Hear from Karen Thornton

"My job is challenging but rewards daily. No two days are ever the same and not one day goes by when I don’t learn something new."

Hear from Karen Thornton
Karen Thornton
Job title
Area Technical Manager
Commercial Services
How long have you been at NHBC?

I joined in 2004 as a Senior Environmental Engineer after 15 years as a consultant working on contamination projects in both the UK and abroad such as the Millennium Dome, a power station scheme in Russia and various landfill redevelopment schemes.

What is your current role in the company?

Since 2016, I’ve been an Area Technical Manager which means I manage a team of Building Control Surveyors as well as Structural and Geo-Environmental Engineers for our North West Region. We work closely with our builder customers and their advisers, offering open and honest advice to ensure compliance with Building Regulations and NHBC Standards.

What do you enjoy most about your role?

My job is challenging but rewards daily. No two days are ever the same and not one day goes by when I don’t learn something new.  I also really value the people and the team I work with. I am always amazed at the breadth of technical knowledge and know-how of NHBC colleagues.  There’s always someone who can help. There are no egos at NHBC.

I’m also proud of what NHBC stands for and how it conducts itself. Ultimately our work ensures protection to the eventual homeowner, something I care strongly about.

What career opportunities have you had whilst with NHBC?

When I first joined NHBC my primary role was to offer specialist geo-environmental support to engineering and Building Control colleagues and to check compliance of builder proposals against NHBC Standards and Building Regulations.  The area that I found most rewarding were initiatives to support builder customers with the safe development of land affected by contamination for residential end-use. This presented plenty of opportunities to become involved with training initiatives and representing NHBC on a number of industry committees.

Being within multi-disciplinary teams has also provided many opportunities to learn about other facets of the home construction business and the team structure offers the necessary support and knowledge sharing from a wide range of disciplines.

NHBC is serious about learning and development and sponsored me through my Management Diploma which assisted my progression to management level.

What would you say to prospective candidates thinking about a technical career with NHBC?

NHBC offers immense possibilities and opportunities. If you enjoy problem solving, care about construction and development standards and have the ability to discuss and communicate technical matters in an understandable way; then NHBC is a place for you.

An additional bonus is being able to work from home, meaning the drudgery of a daily commute is a thing of the past and you have more time to get on with the important things in life.

What NHBC has to offer you

Including the benefits our staff have access to, our commitment to diversity & inclusion and our values

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