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Elina Hajiyeva PCQI

A quality education

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Elina Hajiyeva PCQI
Published: 29 Jan 2024

Elina Hajiyeva PCQI, a Lead Auditor at BOS Shelf, Azerbaijan, outlines the importance of a quality education in encouraging graduates into the quality sector.

I began my career in the construction sector almost 10 years ago, but my entry into the world of quality really started to progress when I began working at BOS Shelf.

The organisation specialises in construction for the offshore Caspian Sea oil and gas fields, and I began there as a quality auditing officer. This was a new experience with many challenges, but, thanks to various academic courses, plus plenty of persistence and perseverance, I am now an Assurance Lead Auditor.

I lead a team of auditors at BOS Shelf, providing full assurance support in driving one of our core values of continual improvement across our business processes. One of our primary tasks requires rigorous assessments and audits to identify any inefficiencies, redundancies, and potential bottlenecks that could impact on how our organisation operates.

The audit team and I also provide support in the follow up to our auditing process by highlighting areas for improvement and providing clarity. This knowledge then empowers the teams to prioritise areas for improvement, directing resources towards initiatives that promise the greatest return on investment.

Working in quality assurance has presented challenges that have not only helped in my personal development, but have also increased the support I can provide to BOS Shelf. A key area where I have been able to give my support is in developing future quality professionals.

Investing in the future

Entering the CQI mentorship programme as a mentee has been a transformative experience for me – one that has profoundly influenced both my personal and professional growth.

By using the experience gained from the programme, along with regular interactions with my mentor, I have watched my team grow, not only in their technical prowess but also in confidence and problem-solving abilities. By sharing insights, giving guidance, and offering constructive feedback, individuals have evolved from entry level to proficient quality assurance professionals.

"Investing in the development of our resources is a long-term strategy that benefits both individuals and the team. When people feel supported in their growth, they are more likely to be engaged, motivated and productive."

Elina Hajiyeva PCQI, a Lead Auditor at BOS Shelf, Azerbaijan

Azerbaijan has experienced a notable shift in the oil and gas sector in recent years, with an increasing interest in sciences such as standardisation, metrology, information technology engineering, and others. Because of this, a number of companies have really committed to employee development. They now recognise the benefits of hiring interns to attract and retain the best professionals, develop future leaders, and form a strong organisational culture.

Companies are developing structured programmes in partnership with educational institutions and regularly assessing their effectiveness. In return for developing such partnerships, companies provide themselves with a high-quality personnel reserve.

Currently, BOS Shelf cooperates with such as the Azerbaijan Technical University, Azerbaijan State University of Economics, Azerbaijan State Oil and Industry University, and Khazar University, admitting the best students and offering them the opportunity to study and learn alongside real professionals.

In 2020, BOS Shelf also launched the ‘Young Talents’ project, which aims to educate and provide practical training to young future professionals, who will later work on oil and gas projects in Azerbaijan.

BOS Shelf admitted 14 students in the project’s initial year, providing practical training and skills in areas such as engineering, construction, planning, health, safety and environment, quality control and quality assessment. At the completion of the internship programme, BOS Shelf experts – including my own quality function – provide evaluation of the achievements, knowledge and skills of trainees.

Graduates who successfully complete the programme will receive certificates and, more importantly, job offers from the company. In 2023, three interns joined our team as quality assurance assistant engineers who, under our guidance and with support from the CQI’s Profession Map, will be mentored to professional levels.

Such programmes mean BOS Shelf not only secures its own future but also propels the industry towards greater heights of excellence. When graduates of this programme embark on their professional journeys, they will carry with them the torch of quality, illuminating the path for future generations of engineers and craftsmen.

By investing in individuals at the early stages of their careers, the company moulds them into skilled and knowledgeable professionals, aligned with the organisation's values and standards. This long-term approach to employee development not only ensures a continuous supply of well-prepared talent but also fosters loyalty and dedication among the workforce.

BOS Shelf 's investment in quality education is not only confined to its immediate sphere of influence; by nurturing highly skilled professionals, it also contributes to elevating industry standards.

An example is the company’s initiative in establishing a cutting-edge welding school, where, as well as the practical requirements needed to achieve international approvals in welding processes, trainees also learn theory, including quality assurance and quality control, alongside their new skills.

Supporting the profession

The Profession Map offers a recognised approach to career development. Not only does it set out a road map of the quality journey for our incumbent quality professionals, it also offers a clear opportunity for the next generation to acquire foundation and advanced skills.

The CQI states that: "Quality management is about making organisations perform for their stakeholders – from improving products, services, systems and processes, to making sure that the whole organisation is fit and effective.

"Managing quality means constantly pursuing excellence: making sure that what your organisation does is fit for purpose, and not only stays that way, but keeps improving."

Investing in the development of our resources is a long-term strategy that benefits both individuals and the team. When people feel supported in their growth, they are more likely to be engaged, motivated and productive. This, in turn, contributes to the overall success of the business.


I believe that tackling new challenges in my career and mentoring others has been a transformative experience, not only for me but for my organisation. It has influenced others to seek professional and personal growth, reinforcing my belief that embracing change and investing in the development of others is a powerful catalyst for success.

I believe that a state-level initiative in Azerbaijan that incorporates a structured approach to career growth in education would have a positive impact on the younger generation. It would lead to more informed career choices and potentially reduce the gap between education and the demands of their chosen professional sector.

Perhaps a way forward would be for the CQI to engage as a driving force with our institutes here in Azerbaijan. By creating a centralised system for quality professionals, we will globalise educational opportunities, thereby encouraging others to choose quality as their career path.

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