James Overstone joined CADDS Group in 2011.
What was now a decade ago, James made his way into CADDS, bringing his experience and technical expertise to the role of Senior Designer in the, back then, much smaller Engineering Team.
Initially working throughout the Pilbara Region, James’ time was split between the field and office, before his most recent appointment as our Design and Engineering manager.
In celebration of his 10-year anniversary, we got to sit down with James and chat with him about the journey from those early days, right up to now.
What do you do at CADDS now?
My role is the Design and Engineering Manager. I am responsible for the management, growth, and development of our Design and Engineering teams. As well as working with the Group’s other Department Managers to maintain our collaborative approach.
What was CADDS Group liked when you started in 2011?
When I started in 2011, every department fit into a 25-desk-strong office in Bibra Lake. At the time, I worked cross-desk from the Engineering Manager, Darren Clark, who would go on to become the Group’s Managing Director. We exchanged many an awkward eye contact during times of low conversation frequency, however, I quickly realised the advantage of being so close by.
What made you join the business?
At the time, we were a young single income family, and I was working in the commercial sector, which was starting to slow. CADDS were hiring at a time when others were culling, and as a business focussed on maintenance and brownfields engineering projects, I saw it as a stable and exciting opportunity to be a part of. Plus, there was mention of a Bali Christmas party during the interview.
What has been your favourite part of the business?
CADDS have never been afraid of the future. I have seen many people come into the business, at all levels, in both Australia and the Philippines. There were people with different experiences and ideas, all of whom were and still are, embraced with the opportunity to contribute to a stronger, more vibrant business. A solid foundation in the early years has allowed CADDS to experiment and adapt with confidence as market conditions and demands change. It’s inspiring to see that even at the highest level, the business has never stopped looking for that next edge.
What have been the best changes you have seen through your time in the business?
With so much change over a seemingly brief period, it’s hard to say what have been the best changes. The move to Henderson would be our most recent and notable change. I believe it has transformed our business. Henderson is not the obvious first choice for a consultancy, however, the building has really brought all our disciplines and teams together allowing the way we operate to be even more in line with the holistic offering we have on the table.
What have been the biggest challenges?
Achieving our Group’s desire for commitment to quality in an industry with a diminishing understanding of the benefits of efficient design and concise deliverables. I have seen many competitors have come and go, threatening to offer the same for less. CADDS have been unwavering in their commitment, despite the pressures we see in an industry shifting to cost-focused project planning.
What do you most look forward to about working at CADDS?
The people, definitely. I have experienced and enjoyed all kinds of relationships at CADDS. Some of the people here I have known through the industry and worked with for close to 20 years, others that have more recently come in are providing such a varied value to the Group. It is great getting to know these people and I enjoy learning more about what makes them tick and where they are of most value in our business. CADDS has grown, it’s evolved, it’s expanded, but it has remained a place of meaningful relationships and I think in a lot of ways is the core to its success, both internally and externally. I can’t encourage people enough to speak up, get involved and enjoy their time here as much as I have.
Congrats on ten years James. We can’t wait to see what changes you and the Group bring about next.