So, tell us, how did you come in contact with OCRE?

Is a question that we asked Ricardo Guedes, an offshore medic who is working via OCRE for one of our clients. But really, how did he come in contact? His friend and colleague worked via OCRE before, and he gave Mr. Guedes Jim and Wim their contact details and told him to contact them. So he did, and that is how Mr. Guedes’ story at OCRE began! Through the old-fashioned way of word of mouth.

“Could you tell us a bit more regarding your general experiences with OCRE?” 

“Since day number one I have felt the support and encouragement by my point of contact (Jim) and also from all the departments that I have had contact with. I only had 6 months experience as QHSE, yet OCRE believed in me and in my skillset allowing me to proof myself on site. I´m grateful to be given this opportunity to develop myself and my professional career. I would not be where I am now in my career without the support of OCRE.”

“When going more into detail regarding OCRE…”

“Professional personnel, available to help and support me during all the stages of my rotations and also during the time off. During winter when the clients have less demand of personnel I received more than one call from OCRE’s side, where the office gave me feedback about future positions, to let me know that I´m part of the “team” and that I won’t be forgotten… I was treated as a person and not only as a name in a list of a pool of potential candidates. This familiar and respectful way of working suits me as a person and as professional.”

“Let’s dive into the position(s) you have held and/ or the areas of expertise… Maybe talk some details about your current working activities?”

“I´ve been working in a dual role as QHSE Advisor C+ (medic) since January 2019 via OCRE for a Client operating on multiple projects in the North Sea windfarms. It has been very interesting because the projects that I have been involved in have different scopes and I can develop myself in a wider range within the wind industry. As per example; currently I´m in a project that I was also on before in August, but on another rotation and on different vessels and scope. In August I was the QHSE advisor C+ in a cable lay vessel and I had to perform my QHSE role during cable load out and array cable installation, now I´m on another vessel for the QHSE advisor C+ role for Preparation, Testing and Terminations of the cables installed previously. The role of QHSE Advisor allows me to have an overview of an entire project with the specific’s hazards, safety aspects involved in the different scopes of work. For the cable load out and cable installation I´m working on a vessel; where I have the chance to be on deck with the personnel, learning in loco the job, adherence to procedures, compliance with safety rules, mitigation of unsafe situation and the more time I am with the teams the more I can contribute for a safety culture and behavior safety. For test and terminations, I can perform the same role and have the same goals but in a different setting. Working in teams in the towers and substation, other hazards are involved, other procedures need to be followed. From my professional perspective it’s fantastic to be able to understand the projects on their different scopes, in order to adapt my approach to the specificity of it. It´s also nice to meet different people. From some of them you have only heard their voices via radio communications/ conference calls and some of them you have only met via words in an e-mail.

The scopes might be different, but people are people and they are the main focus of my work as an QHSE Advisor C+.

 “Some background story would be nice, could you tell us how you got where you are at today?”

Since 2002, I´m a registered Nurse, mostly working as Emergency Nurse in my home country. 12 years later I embraced a new career as Offshore Nurse in Angola until mid 2016. During my work in Angola I was always in close contact and assisting the onboard HSE and so the spark for an HSE role started there. In mid 2016, in between a project, I went to do the NEBOSH IGC; which is the base for working as HSE internationally. I completed the training with success and with the objective of some day moving into an HSE career. My following project was with the UN in Mali as a flight nurse, part of the civilian AMET helicopters. A challenging and exiting project purely in the medical scope, therefore the HSE dream was on hold…  In the beginning of 2018 the instability and safety conditions in Mali worsened. At that time I had the chance to go with a friend and colleague to a project were they needed QHSE Advisors with medical background to perform the dual role. I just had finished my GWO´s, so I didn’t think twice and embraced the project. It was a big change because I was starting a new career and it was out of my comfort zone. At the time I was an experienced Nurse with aspirations to be a QHSE Advisor. Nowadays, with the confidence of OCRE, I´m an QHSE Advisor and Nurse.

“Clearly you have come a long way and reached several goals! With that, on a final note, do you have any plans for the future?”

“I keep my medical certification in date and I´m trying to develop my QHSE Advisor related training to be able to progress and develop myself every day. My plan for next year is to enroll the NCRQ diploma in Health and Safety. I´m continually studying and keeping up with the updates on best practices and legislation. Furthermore I had and I have the chance to learn a lot with my HSE colleagues, supervisors and managers, their feedback and expertise enable me to perform better on my daily jobs.

As a Nurse I was always on the reactive side of things, now as QHSE Advisor I´m on the preventive side of things. Performing the dual role gives me the responsibility to prevent having people in the hospital to perform my medical skills. My background allows me to see things in a different way, in of all my QHSE Advisor role, risk assessments, inspections, interventions… I have in the back of my mind the potential consequences for the workers regarding their health in a potential accident.”