Top In Innovation

Top In Innovation Katie Matthews

26 March 2014

A recent young recruit to Costain is demonstrating how technical qualifications are not necessarily essential to making an impact in the field of technical ingenuity.

Just 16 months after joining the Group, Katie Matthews has already won an innovation award for developing an interactive map and is now trialling a small, helmet-mounted camera for use on sites.

Katie, who completed her Level 3 Business Admin NVQ last December and is an Administrator, says that an interest in business – specifically areas such as business management and innovations – spurs her on.

Working in the Severn Trent AMP5 framework contract office at Longbridge, Warwick, she says that business “just clicked” with her after she left school.

Her innovations began after she was asked to create a map on which Costain’s batched sites could be plotted, together with the sites of individual projects. She came up with an electronic interactive map on which details of a project – such as its name, project number, start and finish dates plus any other relevant information – can be plotted.

Users can interrogate the map on their tablets or laptops and sort the sites by various criteria, such as the job’s value or jobs in a certain batch. “My business improvement manager told me to submit the idea for an innovation award; the leadership team awarded me £250 for this and I received positive feedback from Costain, Severn Trent Water and MWH.”

She has now been given a budget of £1000 to undertake trials using a small, helmet-mounted Go-Pro camera around Severn Trent sites, after having given a presentation on its potential benefits to the Severn Trent AMP5 framework management team. The camera has the potential for several uses, such as safety talks, walk-rounds of sites for new personnel or demonstrating how to undertake tricky maintenance or repairs on assets such as pipework.

Katie is still only 20 and has a passion for business; she is motivated to achieve a business-related degree in the next five years: “In 10-15 years, I aspire to be a manager, but I want an overall degree in business first.”

She juggles her innovation work with her day-to-day duties, but has found Costain ready to give the necessary time and encouragement to develop her innovative ideas.


Pictured: Just 16 months after joining Costain, Katie has two innovations under her belt.





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