6 JAN 2021
Picking the right case study and preparing for the interview — two important elements of navigating the path to becoming a Chartered Surveyor, according to newly-qualified member Garrick Pepper MRICS, Senior Associate Real Estate Advisory at PwC.
We caught up with Garrick to find out about the overall process, including how to tackle the challenges along the way. Garrick also shares his motivation for wanting to become Chartered and the opportunities that the recognition can provide.
Read our in-depth Q&A with Garrick below.
Why did you decide to pursue your APC and become chartered through RICS?
I opted to pursue the APC and become a RICS Chartered Valuation Surveyor, as I recognised the benefits of being a part of a global network of property professionals.
This comprehensive presence and the global professional standing associated with RICS accredited professionals appealed to me, particularly given the trend towards increasingly globalised real estate markets.
What was the greatest challenge you faced during your APC?
Selecting an appropriate case study was quite difficult, whilst you don’t want to pick a really difficult case study, you also don’t want to pick a really simple case study where there were no challenges to overcome. Getting this balance right was challenging, but my ultimate selection definitely paid dividends during the case study presentation.
It is obviously important to select a case study that you were heavily involved with from start to finish. It is important to select a case study where there were a number of key challenges that you were able to confidently overcome and apply those learnings to subsequent engagements. This leaves a lot of topics to cover during the questioning portion of the formal interview and makes for a more enjoyable questioning process.
...the global professional standing associated with RICS accredited professionals appealed to me, particularly given the trend towards increasingly globalised real estate markets.
How did you compose yourself in the interview?
I approached the interview as if I was presenting to a client team during my day to day work, this allowed me to keep my composure professional and formal, however still able to enjoy a joke or two with the assessors to lighten the mood and make the process enjoyable for all parties.
My employer PwC provided fantastic support throughout the process, including from both my RICS Counsellor and Supervisor, shout out to Elizabeth Walsh and Charlotte Conyers. PwC encouraged me to take a few days of study leave prior to the formal interview, and was supportive throughout the APC process, particularly in regard to gaining CPD points, as well as being allocated to relevant engagements so I was able to gain the right balance of engagement exposure.
Do you think the APC process helped you to grow in your current role?
Yes, it certainly has. Following the completion of my APC I have had a number of other PwC colleagues reach out to me for assistance in gaining their MRICS accreditation, which has allowed me to take on a mentorship role with these colleagues. Furthermore, I am now able to include my membership as a RICS Chartered Valuation Surveyor as a professional accreditation on my CV.
The highlight for me was undertaking mock formal interview interviews with other members of the RICS across the local, as well as international markets. This allowed me to practise for my upcoming interview, as well as foster genuine professional relationships with those willing to mentor and assist me during the APC process.
Garrick's advice for built environment professionals
If you are in two minds about whether to sign up for the APC, my one recommendation would be to just do it.
Whilst it may seem daunting at the beginning of the process, once you get into the swing of things it becomes a part of your weekly routine. A key recommendation would be to ensure you speak regularly with your RICS counsellor and/or supervisor as I found bouncing ideas of them to make the process a lot easier and more enjoyable.