Orlando Alexander


From the Royal Navy to Mechanical Engineer

Orlando spent 7 years in the Royal Navy from October 2006 to December 2013.

His role was an Electrical and Mechanical Maintenance Engineer where he was involved in various tasks such as diesel generators, vacuum sewage treatment systems, regulating high or low pressure air, hydraulic systems, reverse osmosis plants, fuel intake and treatments.

A typical day in the Royal Navy for Orlando was dealing with machinery breakdowns, maintenance of ship services and watch keeping. As well as his expertise in engineering, Orlando developed integrity, working under pressurised environments and time constraints, communication, meeting client’s needs, teaching, presenting and balancing his personal life as a husband.

Orlando gained his current role as Mechanical Engineer, working for Skanska through BuildForce submitting him for an interview. Having transferrable skills, years of experience and knowledge helped his transition from the Royal Navy to civvy street. This change can often be challenging, as Orlando was unsure of what his life would be like away from the military, and as such would have liked further support during his transition and continuing into civilian life.

A typical day for Orlando now involves maintaining all pumps and bearing changes, such as heating and cooling systems. He is also busy carrying out reactive work to satisfy clients whilst building integrity.

Orlando believes every skill he currently utilises has been transferrable from his military career, in which communication holds greatest value for both the Royal Navy and construction.

Orlando’s advice to someone leaving the Armed Forces and seeking a career in Construction is:

“Create a degree of confidence before seeking excellence. Never forget your fundamental principles, knowledge and try not to be too wise in your own eyes.”

Lastly, three words Orlando would use to describe a career in construction: “Versatile. Tactical. Progressive.”