In the final article in our series on the different professional groups in the Society, HUGH MARKEY discusses the work of the commercial agency surveyor, and DERRY SCULLY introduces the Project Management Surveying Professional Group.
Commercial agency surveying
Commercial agency surveyors provide a comprehensive range of services in the commercial property sector, including sales, disposals, acquisitions, and consultancy regarding commercial property. They work with estate agents, State agencies, developers, asset managers and a range of institutions, e.g., pension funds. A number of our members are engaged in the area of fixed charge receiverships. A significant number are multidisciplinary and practise in other professional areas such as valuations, residential agency or property management.
The Commercial Agency Professional Group’s committee is made up of members from around the country, meaning that all of the regions are well represented.
One of the Group’s main roles is to monitor topical matters relating to the industry on behalf of members. The Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland aims to be the leading body on property-related issues, and the Group contributes to the Society’s submissions, for example on the Budget, and works to keep members informed. An issue on which there is considerable focus at the moment is the Property Services Regulatory Authority (PSRA) and the issues around registration and licensing. The Group has also spent time evaluating proposed amendments to rent review legislation, and sees its role as being to lay out both sides of the argument, thereby facilitating educated debate on these important subjects.
CPD events for members are another focus for the Group. A recent session covered the very topical subject of alternative investment vehicles – how to package properties to make them more attractive to potential investors in today’s difficult market.
The Group also has input to a number of Society working parties, recently completing a paper on turnover rents, which are becoming more common. It is hoped to make this a topic for a CPD event in the future.
Members may contact the Group to request that the Society consider an issue they believe affects them, or to seek advice and assistance on issues in day-to-day practice that they may not have encountered before.
On a cross-professional level, commercial agency surveyors work with colleagues in building surveying, property management, valuation, and residential agency surveying, including in cross-professional working parties, e.g., on landlord and tenant issues with the Valuation Surveying Professional Group.
Project management surveying
The Project Management Surveying Professional Group is the Society’s newest Group, and held its inaugural AGM on September 6. The Group aims to establish the Society as the premier body representing project management professionals in Ireland.
At the moment membership is comprised of Chartered Quantity Surveyors and Chartered Building Surveyors, but the Group welcomes Chartered Surveyors from all backgrounds who are involved in project management. In conjunction with the RICS, the Society has established a ‘grandfathering’ process, whereby members who join the Group during the first six months, and who satisfy relevant experience and professional criteria, can attain the designation Chartered Project Management Surveyor in an accelerated manner.
Typically, project managers are appointed at the beginning of a project and assist the client in developing the project brief and then selecting, appointing and co-ordinating the project team. He or she will then represent the client throughout the full development process, managing inputs from the client, consultants, contractors and other stakeholders, and reporting on and delivering key outcomes relating to time, cost and quality.
The Project Management Surveying Professional Group has elected a committee whose terms of reference are:
(i) to define and seek to maintain high standards of practice and competence in the practise of project management surveying;
(ii) to recommend routes to attaining professional competence;
(iii) to publish the requirements for competency in project management surveying, including any necessary qualification or experience, once approved by the Standing Committee on Education;
(iv) to provide and promote training and development opportunities;
(v) to take action with regard to and be responsible for matters that affect the Project Management Surveying Professional Group;
(vi) to delegate work to sub committees or working parties of members and non-members as it considers appropriate; and,
(vii) to nominate members to represent the Professional Group on both national and international bodies/organisations, as appropriate.
One of the main aims of the committee is to plan good, meaningful CPD events, which will be incorporated into the Society’s calendar of events.
Firms for which project management might not be a core business can avail of the services of a project management surveyor, particularly in these difficult times, to deliver the complete programme of works safely, on time, on budget and to the required standards.