International Women’s Day Profile – Jess Dudley


08 Mar 2023

Its International Women’s Day, and we've caught up with one of our colleagues Jess Dudley to chat about her experience of working for National Highways.

International Women’s Day Profile – Jess Dudley

Hi Jess! To start with, when and why did you start working for National Highways?I started in July 2013, I joined as a Business and Admin Apprentice. I had just left college and wasn’t sure what I wanted to do. The apprenticeship was a great opportunity to gain experience whilst studying. It seemed like a good place to start my career as I knew there would be different possibilities in the future… and almost 10 years later I’m still here!

What is your current job?
I am currently a Project Manager in the Regional Investment Programme, working on Designated Funds projects within the South West.

What does your role involve within National Highways?
I’m responsible for managing our Designated Funds projects within the South West region, these projects go beyond our traditional road investment and aim to deliver environmental and social benefits to the people and communities surrounding the SRN.

What do you enjoy about your job?
I enjoy the variation and that there are always challenges to overcome, so every day is a learning day! It’s nice to also feel like what you’re doing is making a difference to people’s lives or helping to improve our environment. The fantastic people I work with also makes the job very enjoyable.

What is your proudest moment?
I’m not sure I have one stand out moment, I’ve done a lot of things throughout my career which I’m proud of, whether it be something as small as stepping outside my comfort zone to gaining Chartered Management status through CMI.

What one piece of advice would you give to women thinking about a career in project or programme management, transport or infrastructure?
Like starting anything new it can be daunting but I’ve generally found my peers to be supportive. Project management requires a lot of different skills, so even if you haven’t necessarily managed a huge project before you may have transferable skills or experience which can still be relevant. There are also loads of resources and project management qualifications which can help enhance your understanding of the profession.

You can read more about some of the recent projects Jess has worked on in the South West here.