Introducing Site Manager, Rachel Harmon
Each morning Rachel Harmon wakes early, greeting the day with the type of eagerness that comes from being genuinely excited about what is to come.
Confident and proud of her ability, Rachel is exactly where she wants to be in life – the first female site manager with Homebuyers Centre. A self-described dream job.
“I’ve always wanted to work in construction,” Rachel said. “As a child I was always looking around a room looking at all the details, I didn’t realise it could be a career option until much later.”
Initially considering an electrician apprenticeship but never taking the plunge, Rachel went from a short university stint to taking a role as a receptionist in a building company. She then worked her way up to a scheduler – planning for and ordering materials for construction sites – and staying in that role for seven years.
Hooked on the building and construction industry but without the support she needed to progress further in her career, she started to look around.
A friend suggested ABN Group for career development and flagged a scheduling position available at Homebuyers Centre.
“I went for an interview and when they said they had female supervisors, I was sold. I thought, wow, my previous building company had no females in roles like that,” Rachel said. “When I mentioned that one day I wanted to be a site manager they were all for it, it was amazing.”
“I thought, perfect, I’ve found the right place.”
“The team helped me progress from the beginning, offering the right training and experience to get me to site.”
Over the course of over two years, Rachel was supported and mentored by the Homebuyers Centre team and last year was promoted to Site Manager – achieving a life-long goal.
“Pete the Building Manager from the beginning was so excited to have me on board,” Rachel said. “My senior supervisor Jon has been the biggest advocate for me, especially in the past year he has been pushing me, helping me grow.”
“I think Jon and I are very similar people, we really want to take care of the client and deliver perfection, in a way,” Rachel said. “He recognises that, and my gender doesn’t come into the equation.”
“It is just so important for everyone to be supportive of women in this industry and I’ve had the most positive experience here. I’m really grateful.”
Rachel joins a number of established female leaders at the ABN Group, including fellow Site Manager Dianna Evans from Webb & Brown-Neaves. Di transitioned into a Site Manager role 10 years ago.
“It’s great to see Rachel achieve her goals,” Di said. “Going for a role you really want – rather than just falling into it – and especially when there are challenges along the way, means you’ll naturally go above and beyond. This is what makes people like Rachel worth their weight in gold.”
Rachel’s advice for other women interested in a site-based building career?
“Don’t listen to negative comments, just keep pushing. You know your worth – put yourself out there. Speak up ‘til they hear you.”