A Perspective on Canadian Consulting Engineering – Here and Now with Louise Ménard

Nov 1, 2016

Not a day goes by that we don't hear of the construction of a new highway, a mine undergoing a project expansion, or rumours of a new technology poised to reduce our carbon emissions. Engineering at its best is all around us! The Association of Consulting Engineering Canada (ACEC) hosted the National Leadership Conference this October in Ottawa, Canada.

Leaders converged to address priorities and challenges our industry faces, and Golder's President of Americas, Louise Ménard participated as a panelist with esteemed industry leaders to exchange thoughts and perspectives on the future of the consulting engineering industry.

We sat down with Louise to discuss her perspective on this conference - the first of its kind hosted by the ACEC. "Timing couldn't have been better; the role of consulting engineering hasn't changed, but how we deliver our services has. The market fluctuation due to the challenges faced in the resource industry in recent years, has shaken the industry to its core. It has everyone - engineering leaders, and all those that work in the industry - reflecting on our position in a changing market and how we are going to deliver services to our clients in Canada and globally."

The previous panel of speakers delivered a client perspective on the industry. One statement made was that of an industry trend in consolidation amongst consulting firms. A valid perspective, Louise commented, "This is a matter of fact but it shouldn't be about who is bigger but truly, on how you can differentiate and find your place in the market."

"The industry is highly competitive. Firms have realized that, while excellence in project delivery is critical, there is also a need to shift to client-centricity - cultivating client relationships, firms have to find innovative ways to deliver engineering services and to create value and efficiencies for the client's organization."

"The significant investment in infrastructure projects brings us confidence in the future. Firms that cultivate their core business and maintain a healthy and diversified portfolio of clients should be in a good position to play their role in building tomorrow's communities."

Louise is confident that all the innovation we bring moving forward is going to give rise to a new work environment. "The younger generation of engineers and consulting professionals are industrious and technologically savvy. Coupled with the wisdom, and experience imparted by our senior team members - I truly believe we'll see an even more dynamic industry, with a strong market position."

"Albeit the economic climate is tough, I believe it provides an opportunity to reflect. Reflect on what works, what our business model is, continue to evaluate innovation and all the while focus on developing a client-centric approach to our business. We are transitioning to a different playground but striving to get our gear ready to do what we are good at: consulting engineering."

About Golder Associates

As a global, employee-owned organisation with over 50 years of experience, Golder Associates is driven by our purpose to engineer earth's development while preserving earth's integrity. From 165 offices worldwide, our more than 6,500 employees deliver solutions that help our clients achieve their sustainable development goals by providing a wide range of independent consulting, design, and construction services in our specialist areas of earth, environment, and energy.

For additional information, please contact:
Golder Associates Ltd.
Tina Marano, North American Marketing Leader
Tel: +1 (905) 567-6100 x2556
Email: Tina_Marano@golder.com

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Louise Menard