Careers in O.R.
ProfileS - Paula McCombe

Paula McCombe

BAE Systems

After completing my Masters in Operational Research at Strathclyde University and taking a year out to travel, I decided it was time to settle down and apply the skills I had learnt within the field of O.R. to real world problems. I chose BAE Systems as it offered the scope of work on a variety of projects at all stages of their lifecycles. There is also the opportunity to work within different business areas.

Since joining the company two years ago I have undertaken requirements and scenario analysis for the next generation of aircraft, worked within the Market Development Department at Head Office forecasting defence budgets, collaborated with other companies on joint ventures and am soon to commence a one year secondment within the Business Development area.

The majority of my work has been in multi-functional project focused teams. In such an environment the scope to learn from other more experienced members of the profession is enhanced. Working with other specialists has allowed me to gain a good insight into all areas of the problem.

The specific nature of the work within the defence industry means that the tools used within the Operational Analysis department are often in-house models or specialised tools built around standard techniques. These in-house developments are complemented by off the shelf models where applicable.

Since joining BAE Systems as a novice within the defence industry, I have found the work both varied, interesting and challenging. The opportunities to broaden ones knowledge and skills is always available.

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