APC assessor Eloise Heron takes us through the role and how rewarding it is for assessors and candidates alike.
The Assessment of Professional Competence (APC) is the last cliff on the climb to becoming a Chartered Surveyor. APC candidates spend a minimum of 24 months training for their final assessment. Only after they have gone through the set APC process, and satisfied a panel of assessors that they have the required competencies (i.e., skills), will they be awarded the coveted ‘Chartered’ status.
Eloise Heron is a Chartered Valuation Surveyor who often assesses candidates on the valuations pathway of the APC and in other connected areas. She has been working as an assessor for about five years and says the role is rewarding: “One of the biggest benefits is networking with peers, and keeping good connections going outside of typical work scenarios where you might normally be competing against different firms. It’s nice that you can work with fellow Chartered Surveyors and regardless of where you come from or what company you’re in, you’re working together for the same important purpose”.
Eloise says there is a lot to be gained from helping young surveyors: “We learn new skills ourselves because we’re keeping up to date with the latest property issues … There’s also a feel good factor because you’re helping out the next generation”.
Advice for candidates
Over her time as an assessor, Eloise has seen what it takes to complete the process successfully. First of all, she says candidates should be careful about choosing their employer: “They need a supportive one to make sure they get all the experience that they need and that they choose the right competencies in the process”.
In the final assessment, Eloise says that assessors are looking for candidates who have achieved their competencies to the level that they had committed to and that they have a good, well-rounded knowledge of the property sector: “Well rounded is important because it’s not just a narrow pathway. You have to have good all-round exposure as well. We need to feel that that person would be a safe pair of hands if they became chartered”.
Eloise says she sees many candidates rushing into the final assessment: “Generally they are applying a little bit too early. I think the important thing might be to say that the 24-month minimum is in fact a minimum, not a target. Take your time until you’re confident and you’ve covered enough areas”.
One of the biggest benefits is networking with peers, and keeping good connections
Assessing the assessors
Eloise has recently trained as a monitor to the APC: “I’ll be monitoring the interview assessment process on behalf of the SCSI, which adds another layer of quality assurance to the process. I think it will help the candidates to achieve a fair and consistent experience because that’s what we all want, that it’s consistent. A recent addition is that the SCSI is getting more monitors involved”.
Eloise says becoming an assessor is worth the extra work it takes: “The whole thing is quite positive. Even though it does take up a bit of time, it’s a good thing to do”.