The UK construction industry is made up of just 13 per cent women. But Jules Hynes is bucking the trend and has recently joined chartered building surveyors, Delaney Marling Partnership (DMP).
At 32, Jules has decided to change her career. After studying Business Management and Spanish in 2008, she worked mainly in the housing and homelessness sector and although she enjoyed her role, she wanted to pursue building and construction.
"During my career, my thoughts kept coming back to the built environment field and when I started researching courses and routes into the sector, I found that Nottingham Trent University runs fast track courses for students from certain academic backgrounds. After a discussion and an application for their MSc Building Surveying, I was formally offered a place on their full time course, starting this month."
"Having spent some time researching building survey companies, I found DMP to be the one that appealed the most. I contacted them and whilst initially they were not looking for an employee, we stayed in touch with meetings and trial surveys and now they have offered me a position that will fit around my studies. The first two weeks have been the best of my professional career at DMP. There will be a lot to learn and the next year will be intense but I am ready for it and am very excited about the opportunities that lie ahead of me."
Simon Delaney, partner at Delaney Marling Partnership says:
"We were so impressed with Jules, her attitude and obvious passion for building and surveying we wanted to make the job fit. It is a hugely exciting and rewarding career but the training is consuming. In addition, the RICS requires surveyors to keep a two-year diary as part of their qualification to show a wide ranging experience and technical ability. Jules will already have completed half of this during her Masters."
"Construction in the Humber Region is booming, we are inundated with enquiries for surveys, condition schedules and dilapidations from residential, commercial and public sector clients. We really needed an extra pair of hands and have struggled to find a person with the right skills. I would like to see Jules' positive experience appeal to other women that are looking for a way into this field.”
RICS conducted a study with 75,000 members which revealed that more than two out of five property firms were turning down new business because of the "dearth" of skilled workers. This led to the organisation launching a campaign known as Surveying the Future to attract more talent from diverse backgrounds into the land, property and construction sectors - in particular females – to help with the growing skills shortages in the industry.
Sean Tompkins, CEO of RICS said: "Tackling the issue of diversity in a traditionally white, middle-class and male-dominated sector, which today only has 13 per cent female representation among qualified chartered surveyors, is no easy task.”
"Any perceived barriers or obstacles preventing people – particularly women – from applying for jobs and reaching their full potential must be broken down so that we can build the diversity of skilled talent needed for the future. Our campaign promotes both the local and international attractiveness of a profession in high demand, as well as the issues which still affect the retention and recruitment of talented people, including the importance of effective leadership."