A Highway Engineer is a qualified specialist who oversees the planning, budgeting and implementation of a project, often working as part of a larger, multidisciplinary team across town planning, architecture, environmental health and transport planning.
What does a Highways Engineer do?
A Highway Engineer is responsible for the overall planning and implementation of engineering projects such as roads, bridges and highways. They test the feasibility of designs from a technical and planning perspective, as well as estimating the costs and resources associated with the project. From there, they would also be responsible for overseeing the implementation, similar to a project manager, including liaising with other departments, councils, members of the public and construction personnel.
Benefits of working in Highway Engineering
“Highways Engineering is one of the most secure and flexible career paths one can take. The industry is well-known for being top-heavy, where a noticeable skills-shortage is tackled by the constant encouragement – by Local Authorities, consultancies, contractors, central government organisations (to name a few) – for new talent to join.
It’s often forgotten that our transport systems are the foundations of all development. In a climate where we’re looking to ‘Build, Build, Build’ in response to a housing shortage and where almost every corner of the country is undergoing some form of regeneration, the transport infrastructure needs to be adept at assisting the delivery of this development alongside sustaining it for years to come.
Highways engineers are a key pillar in this process. Getting involved from initial feasibility through to ensuring the working is completed to a quality-controlled standard.
From this, no two days are the same. Highways Engineering allows one to develop a catalogue of soft and technical skills. Some days you will find yourself desk-bound, solving technical engineering problems and other days you will find yourself liaising with high-profile stakeholders (politicians, directors) or having a chin-wag with those on-site.
The job is diverse in its nature and by holding key engineering principles, it exposes you to a range of particular niches that provide you the option of specialising in; development, traffic, parking, structures, civils, drainage. Or you could stay a generalist. The World is your Oyster (Partnership) as a Highways Engineer.”Jamie Vear-Altog, Team Leader, Highways & Transport
How to get a job in Highway Engineering?
There are two ways to start working as a Highway Engineer. Firstly, after leaving college you could go on to do an apprenticeship as a Trainee Technician, learning on the job whilst also getting formal qualifications relating to Highways Engineering.
The other route would be to study Civil Engineering, Engineering or Construction at university, possibly going on to specialise with a Master’s Degree or completing examinations to be recognised as a Chartered Engineer.
How much do Highway Engineers earn?
The engineering sector is a highly profitable sector, which is constantly growing and evolving. Engineering projects including highways engineering projects generate 23% of the UK’s total turnover. As a Highways Engineer, you will be involved with many different size projects of regional and national importance. Not only will you have the satisfaction of working on a wide range of projects, making your job very diverse, you will also have the pleasure of seeing these projects completed and serving the community for years to come.
According to Glassdoor, Highways Engineers and Designers earn between £24k – £29k a year depending on experience, with more senior roles earning up to around £40k. The job also offers flexible working arrangements, bonuses and performance-related pay, leave entitlement up to 30+ days, season ticket loans and Oyster Travel Card credit loans which can be repaid through your salary and various other benefits depending on the organisation you work for.
How to start your job search for roles in Highways Engineering?
For industry advice or to find out about our current roles in Highways & Transport get in touch with our team via email email@example.com or give us a call on 020 7766 9000.
Jamie joined Oyster Partnership back in 2015 straight after graduating from University of Brighton. Over the years he has built a strong reputation within the industry by delivering high quality service to the Public & Private sectors. Jamie is currently leading our Highways & Transport division.