Vacancy: Passivhaus Design Engineer / Mechanical Building Services Engineer

Posted by on Apr 15, 2021 in news | Comments Off on Vacancy: Passivhaus Design Engineer / Mechanical Building Services Engineer

Job summary

WARM is seeking to appoint a Passivhaus Design Engineer or Mechanical Building Services Engineer who has experience in designing and delivering low energy buildings. We’re looking for someone educated to a degree level in engineering, science, maths or architecture and with at least 3 years’ experience in the construction sector.

You will be responsible for assessing and providing energy design advice for Passivhaus buildings, a key cornerstone in delivering our low energy future. This challenging role demands the prospective candidate cares deeply about mitigating the climate and ecological emergency we are facing.

We need you to challenge our processes, have opinions on what to address next and show initiative and confidence in order to lead on these issues when needed. We want to work with people who have ambitions of providing technical leadership, to take our business in whatever direction gets the greatest benefit.

Our clients range from social housing providers to universities and their values align with ours; they want technical solutions that work and a team who really care. We are not just interested in compliance, but in an individual who is confident to question the standard to ensure it is the right approach. Supporting building work on site, testing the systems and undertaking post occupancy analysis are the methods we use to keep it real, so the changes we propose aren’t merely a success on paper.

We were pioneered in 2009 by Sally and Pete the founding partners, as a research project aimed at identifying what real low energy buildings look like and how they behave. Because of our success, we are excited to be in the position to expand our team.

The existing superstar team of nine specialists includes engineers and architectural technologists, all of  whom want to share their thoughts and ideas with you; responsible for some of our most fabulous post occupancy research to date and was the mechanical services lead for Goldsmith street (shameless name drop), is Caroline for example, who with passion and drive puts her heart into each project. We need more Carolines……. or Karls or Liams, Nualas, Gareths, Ingrids or Emmas!

“For a small practice the quality and breadth of the work we are involved in is staggering. The shared values, mutual respect and friendship present in the WARM office provide much opportunity for discussion and collaboration and mean that you are constantly learning and pushing the boundaries of sustainable design.“

One last thing, we’re based in Plymouth, a great hub from which to have wild adventures. Whilst longer term we would expect you to be in the office for at least one day per week (particularly in the first couple of years) but are willing to consider applicants working remotely.

We have the most stunning West Country beaches, moors, rivers and woods on our doorstep, with Royal William Yard and Mount Edgecumbe Country Park quite literally a stone’s throw from our office, and did we mention we’re extremely flexible with time?

What we want from you:

We are interested in all levels of experience but ideally, successful applicants would be:

  • Interested in being part of the solution! We are committed to designing truly sustainable buildings, looking at options on their merits and never scared to change our minds (just in case you didn’t get that from the first bit).
  • Have a background in mechanical building services, even better if you’ve worked on building services for low energy/Passivhaus buildings.
  • Inquisitive to ask your own questions, work out how to test your hypothesis and identify implications for design based on your research.
  • Enjoy collaborating. We work across the industry with others, many of which would traditionally be our competitors, to deliver the best solutions. We want you to have fun, the people always make it.
  • Educated to degree level in engineering, science, maths or architecture related. We want you to be comfortable with numerical analysis so you can answer all our burning questions.
  • Teach others, both formally and informally. There is a lot of this needed so it’s a good idea if you like telling other people about what we’re up to.

Other qualities that would be advantageous:

  • Passivhaus Designer qualification
  • Understanding of how to calculate energy use of a building and equipment from first principles
  • Experience of using PHPP, THERM and providing design advice based on results
  • Practical experience of building
  • Experience of managing budgets and project timelines
  • Experience in designing building services such as heating, mechanical ventilation & hot water systems
  • Able to commission mechanical services
  • Experience of IES/TAS/CAD/Hevacomp/BIM software
  • Experience of post occupancy evaluation, monitoring and evaluation of system performance, fault finding
  • Airtightness testing, particularly for fault finding

About WARM

We are a small but very effective team and we like each other!

Employee benefits include flexible working, an annual sustainable travel budget, 28 days holiday (+ bank holidays), profit linked bonus, and pension contributions. We actively encourage personal advancement; we offer an annual budget for external CPD plus in house CPD sessions and support towards Chartered status.

  • We are a team with a deep passion for sustainable design; it is not just a business to us.  This extends to our wider network of colleagues and clients as well; our projects by their very nature draw people who care about what they do.
  • We are small but influential, working on pioneering projects across the UK. You will have the opportunity to learn from our extensive knowledge of how to engineer real low energy buildings.
  • We have a strong culture of personal advancement. You will be encouraged to extend your understanding and develop your own areas of interest; our role may change over time and we expect your knowledge base to change with it (you can also influence this change).
  • We expect our employees to develop a working understanding of business management; we will actively support you to look after project budgets, find potential clients, input into company direction etc.
  • We provide close supervision some of the time but are keen for you to take responsibility and provide you with opportunities to make significant decisions.

Further information about the work of WARM

  • Design – for the last 11 years WARM have concentrated on engineering the building fabric; thermal energy modelling to the Passivhaus standard has been the mainstay of our work. We have been responsible for some of the most pioneering projects in the UK including the first Passivhaus schools, the largest Passivhaus housing schemes, and airtightness support for the first Passivhaus swimming pool.
  • Certify – we were the first certifiers based in the UK and are now one of the most prolific, having certified over 50 developments. We specialise in large and complex buildings and have been involved in nearly every non-domestic Passivhaus project in the UK.
  • Teach – we believe in disseminating the knowledge we have and so run the successful CarbonLite Passivhaus training, as well as providing technical lectures to RIBA, independent consultancies, national/international conferences and Universities.
  • Test – much of our knowledge of what a low energy building is comes from our own research. This includes ventilation commissioning, air testing, energy monitoring, co-heating testing, thermographic surveys and of course having a go at building.

Further reading:

If this opportunity inspires you, we would love to hear from you. Please send a copy of your CV and a covering letter outlining your experience and aspirations to office@peterwarm.co.uk. Please don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions you may have. We’re a friendly bunch!