The first ten years
After accumulating over 25 years of experience in the domain of engineering product lifecycle information management, Brad started Straight Thinkers Limited to pursue an independent contracting career. Since its incorporation in June 2011, the company has operated successfully and profitably by pursuing two main lines of business, all of which is described in detail here:
Engineering information management consulting
Brad has executed a number of consulting assignments in large engineering projects and organisations, including contracts with:
- IBM (at BAE Systems);
- Babcock Marine and Technology;
- National Grid;
- GE Oil & Gas;
- GKN Aerospace;
- Warship Support Agency within the UK Ministry of Defence.
Bespoke software development
Brad and Richard have developed a bespoke software package for forecasting maintenance manpower and spares capacity requirements. This “Maintenance Optimisation Support Tool” (MOST) has been employed by BAE Systems for nearly ten years on the Royal Navy’s Type 26 Global Combat Ship design and build programme by our client, Rmada Limited.
The mid-life crisis
In common with many other businesses in the first quarter of 2020, many factors – some of which were out of our control – forced us to reconsider how and where we work:
- Brad was losing his enthusiasm for long contracts and working away from home. The pandemic made this almost impossible anyway and both the business and the contracting environments were, shall we say, not in the best of health.
- Dianne was in her penultimate year before retirement from primary school teaching after more than 20 years.
- Richard was between projects and in the midst of self training on Android App development skills and was seeking a focus for employing those skills usefully and profitably.
- We’d already decided to sell up and move house.
A bit of a watershed seemed to be approaching…cut to August 2021:
- The house move completed in February;
- The company has had its 10th birthday;
- Dianne has “retired”;
- Richard has deployed his first native Android App to Google Play for in house testing;
- Brad has his DBS Clearance and is now a registered STEM Ambassador.
So “what next” you may well ask…
The next ten years
Whilst we are still open to opportunities in our original lines of business, our focus for the future will change, some might say quite dramatically !
We have decided to pool our collective knowledge, skills, understanding and experience – totaling well over 90 years – and to radically change the business to now focus on providing consultancy, training, mentoring and specialised resources for teacher trainers, primary school leaders, teachers and pupils in the English and STEM curriculum subject areas.
Our motivations stem from our desire to:
- Stay engaged in purposeful work – to keep the grey matter active;
- Pass onto younger generations some of the key academic and life skills that we know will stand them in good stead in the future;
- Provide engaging learning tools for pupils;
- Continue running a successful, sustainable and profitable business.
Our credentials are our listed here.
Our offerings are described on our Services page.