Meet Mark Stenbeck, Lead Mechanical and Piping Designer

Mark Stenbeck

Senior Lead Mechanical and Piping Designer, Mark Stenbeck recognises the pivotal role mechanical engineers play in taking a project from concept to reality.

Based in Perth, Australia, Mark leads a mechanical piping drafting team, delivering designs and solutions for projects across Australia.  He has seen a few things in his 20 plus years with Tetra Tech Proteus; with the evolution of CAD technologies being one which is giving Tetra Tech Proteus and their clients the leading edge.  


What is your role at Tetra Tech?

I’m the Senior Lead Mechanical and Piping Designer, which means I’m responsible for managing the entire mechanical piping drafting team. In addition to supervising the team across multiple projects and clients, I quality check all the mechanical and piping drawings that come out of our division as well as preparing bid proposals for new work. 

How did your career as a Mechanical design begin? 

I started with Tetra Tech Proteus in 2001 as a Document Controller. Back then that’s how they used to start new recruits to familiarise people with the workflow process and working in consultancy. I then moved into a junior drafter position and began my training for what was supposed to be three months but ended up being 18. After working for several other companies and contracting over a range of interesting projects, I returned to Proteus seven years ago. 

Tetra Tech Proteus has such a great work culture which was a major factor for wanting to come back and stay. Not every workplace is as rewarding and positive as ours and it makes a huge difference to the team’s ability to get work done and avoid task fatigue. 

What do you enjoy most about your work? 

I really enjoy doing the layout side of things; taking projects from concept through to reality and finding the best way to put elements together is quite interesting. The best part is when you get to site and see your project in the field being built.

I love it when clients send us photos and videos of what’s been achieved, and you get feedback on what’s worked or what needs changing. It’s a great way to learn and grow as a designer.

What kind of innovations have you been utilising in the field of design? 

The CAD systems that we use, and their functionalities have improved dramatically over recent years, specifically with our pipeline systems. 

When we have complex piping scope for a project, it was very difficult to make large quantities of what we call ‘isometric drawings’. But now we have software at our disposal that, with the right information input, can automate the process to generate a large number of high-quality drawings.  

“Speaking with our clients, I know this is something that we really excel at here at Tetra Tech and its why our clients keep returning to us time and time again. Our industry competitors can’t match our expertise.” 

As a Team Leader, another way I make sure that our team is innovating our work processes is by sharing experiences and information. When new people come onboard, I encourage them to share their knowledge and different ways of doing things for the team to trial. If it doesn’t work, then we scrap it. But more often than not, it is a great way to find new enhancements to improve our workflow.  

 You actually work almost completely remote, can you tell us a bit about that experience? 

My family has a farm down in Northcliff, in the south of Western Australia. We made the move to help my father manage the farm. Every five or six weeks I’ll fly up to the main office in Perth to touch base with everyone and for key meetings. 

I’ve got a space separate to the house, an old garden shed that I converted into an office. I still wear my Tetra Tech Proteus shirt and get dressed the same as I would if I was going to the office but it just puts me in that frame of mind of actually stepping out the door and going to work – even though I don’t have far to go on my daily commute! 

In addition to being a great lifestyle change, it’s been a huge boost to my mental health getting out of the city and being with my family. I’m also fortunate to have a team that I can rely on; that makes a huge difference. I’m very thankful that management has been very supportive of the whole move. 

What is the most memorable project you have worked on at Tetra Tech? 

Definitely it has been the Melbourne Metro project. 

It was very early on in the project and the team at Tetra Tech Coffey in Victoria needed someone who could use MicroStation (a computer-aided design software for infrastructure design by Bentley) and I was asked if I’d be willing to go and I said “yes”. Being an urban transit project, it was an industry that was different to my typical mining projects. But it’s always nice to do something completely different from your usual project. The team I was working with really knew their stuff, which made them an absolute pleasure to work alongside. It is just another reason why working at Tetra Tech means that you never know what project you might be working on next! 

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