Radu Pintili has been our operations manager at Heathrow since 2013, and, since then, he’s lost count of the number of projects he’s worked on at the airport.
“I love coming through the airport when I go on holiday with my family,” says Radu, “because, as we walk through the terminal building and then through security to the airside lounges, I can point out to them the improvements that I have been responsible for with the Chisholm & Winch team. It’s a great feeling to see all those people moving through the airport, benefitting from the maintenance, changes and improvements that we have made.”
It’s that pride in a job well done and enthusiasm for his work that had made Radu such a valuable part of the Chisholm & Winch team over the past decade, and such an asset to the client. His role is varied and includes being an approved security signatory for the airport, with responsibility for applying for all our team’s security passes, ensuring DBS checks are in place and approving all vehicle movements and deliveries associated with our Heathrow projects.
Radu explains: “Security is a very important aspect of managing our operations at Heathrow. Many of our projects are airside and involve working in restricted areas. Our work at the airport is safety critical and often involves working out of hours around the operational requirements of the airport. After so many projects, we are a trusted contractor on site and it’s part of my job to ensure we maintain that trust at every touchpoint.”
Radu thrives on responsibility and a busy schedule, which is one of the reasons he loves his job. “It’s impossible to describe a typical day at work,” he continues, “because there really is no such thing. And that’s why I love it. There is always a new challenge, it’s always busy and there is huge satisfaction in seeing a job run like clockwork and complete on time while the airport continues to operate on a business as usual basis.”
It takes considerable skill and commitment to deliver these projects, often with several jobs running concurrently. Most of our Heathrow projects are operational refurbishment, so part of Radu’s job is ensuring that the right teams are deployed at the correct time and that the work area is left clean, safe and tidy, ready for a full flight schedule the following day.
“Co-ordination is critical,” Radu continues. “I am responsible for ensuring we have the right skills, materials and equipment in the right place, at the right time aligned to the programme. I price every job and place the orders for materials and equipment, so my role straddles QS, contract management and project management. I also enjoy being hands on – I am a certified authorised person for lifting operations and have a background in joinery, carpentry and shopfitting, so I am able to take an active role in project delivery too, drawing on my wide-ranging experience of operational refurbishment.”
There may be no such thing as a typical day for Radu, but his daily work begins at 7am on site and he has meetings with each of the site managers responsible for current Chisholm & Winch projects at the airport each morning. He is also responsible for health and safety and risk assessments, along with procurement and deployment.
“Much of our work takes place at night, while there are no passenger flights,” explains Radu, “but there is lots to be done during the day to ensure we maximise the value of non-operational time in terms of progress on the programme.”
While Radu’s working day on site ends at 5pm, he also meets with the site manager later in the evening by video call as a pre-start meeting before work commences for the night. Not only does this provide an opportunity for discussing progress and next steps; it also ensures that the Chisholm & Winch team co-ordinates activities around other contractors working at the airport at the same time.
“My role is all about making sure everything runs smoothly, both day to day with our team, materials and equipment, and at the end of the job with the handover to the client. I’m really proud of the work we do at the airport and the role we play in enabling people to travel safely, wherever they are flying off to.”