James targets ‘consistent quality’ through project management

January 16, 2024 | People

“Quality is never an accident,” said the English philosopher, John Rushkin.

The sentiment is not lost on Senior Project Manager, James Etheridge. With over 15 years of industry experience, James joined Paynter Dixon last year to focus on project delivery in southern NSW and ACT.

His regional resume includes large-scale residential apartments in northern Canberra and Bateman’s Bay, and specialised accommodation for the NSW Police Academy in Goulburn.

Today, he is on site in Wodonga where Paynter Dixon is overseeing construction of The Quarter – a new mixed-use, multi-storey development on track to re-invigorate the town centre.

“At the end of the day, we are looking to satisfy the client and exceed their expectations,” says James.

“Paynter Dixon has a distinct advantage in having an established team and inhouse expertise. We can resource our projects with the company’s full backing to achieve a consistent high standard of service.”

The notion of ‘consistent quality’ spans the project life cycle: cost and design management, authority approvals, construction, and final hand over.

“I’m process-driven and methodical which fits hand in glove with Paynter Dixon.”

He singles out the company’s Inspection and Test Plans (ITPs) which document when, what and how to conduct inspections to ensure construction meets design requirements.

“Our ITP process goes the extra mile in proactively testing materials and installation on site. Waterproofing is an example – we conduct balloon tests in a wet area over a 24-hour period to ensure the membrane is resistant.”

“This proactive approach can support value engineering, such as accelerating the program and other savings.”

High-performing teams are critical to mission success.

“Ultimately, we get the job done by partnering with subcontractors. We are diligent in sourcing local operators who not only possess the right skills, but fundamentally share our commitment to safety and quality.”

The 110-year-old commercial construction company has an integrated management system which is independently certified by Global Mark and rolled out across all operations.

“Our systems are backed by a culture of collaboration and respect. When I’m preparing a short-range program, I’ll work hand-in-hand with our subbies to ensure our milestones and timings are rock solid.”

With considerable experience in delivering Class 2 buildings (multi-unit apartment buildings), James is attuned to the complexity of compliance under the Design and Building Practitioners Act.

“It’s not just the fact that regulatory compliance is greater than before – it’s the ongoing change to legislation.”

“Project management involves staying on top of this shifting landscape. The priority of construction is to deliver on the approved design, in accordance with legislative requirements.”

“From my experience in Canberra, I think the market appreciates our level of technical expertise and certainty in handing over a premium product to the client.”

In his spare time, James can be found lapping the racetrack on his Ducati 1098. Improvement comes down to “understanding the physics of the bike and precision movement when riding.”

He smiles. “I’ve come off the bike before which hurts – but it hurts the hip pocket more than anything else.”

To enquire about our services, contact Kirk Bolte, General Manager Southern Region and ACT.