Young Rail Professionals: Richard Ward-Jones

The Young Rail Professionals (YRP) network was established in 2009 to bring together people from all aspects of the rail industry, and to inspire the next generation of rail professionals. We’ve been speaking to the YRP Ambassadors recently to find out why they chose this industry and what they think the impact of institutions like the National College for High Speed Rail will be.

Name: Richard Ward-Jones
Job Title: Business Development Manager
Company: Amey (@Ameyplc)

Richard, tell us what you love most about your job.
The variety of opportunity. With the Government and the private sector developing ambitious plans to invest in rail over the next 15+ years, this a sector with so many opportunities – and this looks set to only increase.

What excites you about the future of the rail industry?
Technology. The potential applications for technology are enormous and will be vital to deliver the increased capacity we need to accommodate rising passenger numbers.

What would your advice be to someone entering this industry for the first time?
Remember that a well-rounded employee with a broad understanding of business is of huge value to any organisation. There is of course nothing wrong with wanting to be a specialist, but if you can gain experience across multiple disciplines it will give you a strong understanding of the whole business, enabling you to make better decisions.

What inspired you to join this industry?
A guest lecture at my University by global engineering consultancy Atkins first piqued my interest. I went on to become a graduate engineer with Atkins and that led me to where I am today.

If an institution like the National College for High Speed Rail had existed when you were studying, would you have applied?
Yes, absolutely. The breadth of training and development that the National College for High Speed Rail can deliver is bound to propel its students forward.