Omar Holali is a Cost-Engineer for Piety THP – fresh off the back of finishing a Bachelor’s in Construction Project Management at UTS, Omar is more persistent than most when it comes to excelling at his work and chasing after what he wants out of life. During university, Omar worked as a cost management tutor and was pulling 60 hour weeks to ensure he kept both across his studies and his job. At the end of the first year, he took a job working with Altas Group, before moving over to PietyTHP in 2017.
In his spare time, Omar volunteers his time at a local Arabic college and is studying a Masters in Builders Surveying – all while holding down a full-time job at PietyTHP, making him one of the more motivated people in the industry.
Let’s kick things off, tell us a bit about your non-professional background. For example, what was your first job? I was a cleaner – I spent a lot of time cleaning toilets, vacuuming and wiping tables at the college I volunteer at. [haha].
Why did you choose to go into construction project management? Good question. I think it’s because I love the end-to-end process that’s involved; seeing the drawings, draft designs and all of the man-hours that go into building something. To stand in front of the completed work is something that is indescribable. Seeing the client’s face, and knowing you did a great job makes it all worthwhile. Finally, for me personally, I see ‘cost’ as the heart of the business. So as an estimator, one that works hard, you become the go-to man and that’s a great feeling too.
Is your field of work competitive? Incredibly.
Were you nervous about getting a job after uni? Absolutely. It took a lot of hard work and consistent follow up to find this incredible role. So that’s why I got straight to it at the end of my first year, getting real experience and making business connections wherever I could.
Was there something in particular that attracted you to PietyTHP? PietyTHP is a young and agile company, so I knew that they wouldn’t limit my opportunities and would encourage me to grow, just as they are now. I’m a Cost Engineer by trade, so I’m the sort of guy who does his homework methodically before making a big decision – I checked online, asked friends and professionals who were in-the-know, and found the feedback about PietyTHP to be very positive.
What is your day-to-day like? Break down a typical workday for us. Well, I get into the office at around 6.50am, boil the kettle for the office and light the scented candle on my desk – it helps me think and can make some of the dense number crunching a bit less strenuous [haha].
I’ll then begin by working on the items I had written at the end of my day yesterday: that could be working on current projects, tendering projects, general admin, or my favourite; finding time for value engineering. For those just starting out, or thinking of getting into my industry, value engineering is looking for ethical ways to save the client $$. So that’s what my day looks like in the office. However, we try to get 2-3 hours each day walking on site, checking projects and overall construction and contractual progress.
What do the next 5 years hold for you? Finally finishing my studies! Long-term, I am working towards becoming a Senior Estimator. Beyond that, I hope to lead the Estimation branch of the PietyTHP business so that we can tender even more work and win more business.