My job, my passion | Amanda Young


My job, my passion | Amanda Young

April 08th '22

Teamwork makes the dream work. With the purposeful cooperation of our Smulders Projects UK branch. In terms of HR, everything is steered in the right direction by passionate HR Manager and family person Amanda Young. A great co-worker you should definitely get to know...


How did your story at Smulders Projects UK (SPU) begin?
“Well, we'll have to go back to 2019, at the time of the Moray East Offshore Wind Farm project, for which we assembled the jackets at our yard in Newcastle. I was thrown in at the deep end right from the start, and got to know my colleagues and the Smulders processes along the way.”

What experience did you bring with you?
“Since 2011 I have been working hard and have grown from Assistant to Manager, across different companies. I also worked as an HR Advisor for a while, through a consultancy firm. It was a very exciting period, as I worked for various companies in different industries such as oil & gas, manufacturing and others. This way, I quickly gained insight into very different disciplines - even though I already had my HR cap on. You could say that I built a solid foundation from which I can draw for my current job and which allows me to optimally help colleagues with their questions and growth process.”

What does HR involve at SPU?
“The HR department as such is just ‘Amanda Young’ at the moment. And my work revolves around the 40 people who work for us. In extremely busy periods, it will be a bit trickier, because there’s a lot to arrange for additional contractors. I’m sure I’ll get the support from an HR Assistant by then.”

What do you think is typical of SPU and Smulders?
“Definitely, the team spirit, as well as the huge expertise. Going in the same direction, pursuing the same business goals and delivering projects on time. It is an honour to contribute to this as an HR Manager. We are a big group, but it feels like a warm family or a ‘small world’ so to speak. Everyone knows everyone else, we interact with respect and we acknowledge each other’s work. If someone at SPU has a question and I can’t solve it myself, I know straight away which person to refer them to.”

Does this mean HR has been streamlined across the sites?
“That is a process and it is maturing. We have our independence as SPU, under the wings of the group. Consistency across branches is the future and we are in the process of implementing the Worktime tool for time and job registration. I get all the support I need for our local HR.”

What are the challenges you are facing?
“Covid is not yet over. Then there is Brexit, which has quite some impact on recruitment, as well as changes in tax legislation for contractors. Another challenge – but an enjoyable one – is our commitment to getting more and more employees on the payroll. Of the current 40 people, we now have about 17 colleagues on the payroll, with the others as contractors. The general switch has started and involves a lot of preparation.” 

What do you like most about your job?
“The content is great, as are the people. I love my job and a great job makes a world of difference to your quality of life. That is how I experience it. Self-development is important to me and it is certainly a pillar of our personnel policy. In terms of growth and development, we want to give our colleagues every opportunity. Their safety is paramount, but so is their well-being. And we organise training about this. Mindfulness in the workplace, that’s something we do.”

What is your greatest talent?
“Making logical and realistic assessments of situations, critical thinking and getting things on the right track. I do this with integrity, honesty, respect for others and always with the utmost professionalism. That is what people expect and that is also my work ethic.”

What does the future hold for SPU?
“I would like to do much more of what I do now and, when it is busy, have an HR Assistant by my side. That would be great. As a team, we look forward to the next project with enthusiasm in order to achieve further successes. I would like to continue to develop myself, to enjoy my job even more and to provide optimal support for my colleagues in their jobs.”

Your job is clearly your passion - what about your private life?
“Well, I have a passion for people and my family knows that. I am the person people come to in times of crisis. I like to listen and help. With my husband and 3 children, I enjoy life to the full. I am a family person and we do a lot together, also with the grandparents.”

Do you have time left for hobbies?
“Our home is always busy, so hobbies are not easy. We regularly go out with the family, for example to classic car events – a passion my husband and father share. Being together is my favourite thing.”

Team spirit or family atmosphere?
“I'll have both. We have a strong team spirit and support each other, like families do, here at SPU.”