What was your route to the graduate scheme?

I joined Allsop in August 2019 via an alternative route. Having studied Geography at the University of Nottingham I didn’t have an RICS accredited agree. At this point I had two options: to complete a full-time Masters for a year; or apply for a graduate scheme and complete my Masters alongside.

Although Allsop was not offering a full non cognate route at the time, I was fortunate to be offered a position in the Receivership team as a Trainee Surveyor. This position fell halfway between the Apprentice Scheme and the Graduate Scheme.  I spent one a day a week out of the office at London South Bank University completing a Postgraduate Diploma in Real Estate sponsored by the Receivership team, whilst working four days a week as a graduate surveyor.

Coming from a non-property background I was concerned that I would be at a disadvantage when starting my role as a surveyor. On the contrary I found it incredibly beneficial to both my education and day to day work, allowing me to kickstart my career early. Physically attending university gave me the opportunity to start to build a network amongst surveyors from a range of companies who were undertaking the same route, a resource which I can build and draw upon throughout my career. I also found it easier to manage my time, as I could focus solely on my day-to-day job, or my lectures and give them both 100%.

I received a lot of support from my team and was able to apply the theory in practice daily which enhanced my learning and helped me to develop an in depth understanding through day-to-day application.

I joined the Allsop graduate scheme in April 2021 with a six-month overlap between my final exams and my first graduate rotation, which I completed in the Receivership Department.


What attracted you to Allsop? 

I was initially drawn to Allsop by the range of experience offered through the six-month rotations. I felt this provided the opportunity to really engage with each department and develop a real understanding. Talking to current graduates confirmed that they were given a real level of responsibility , as well as the opportunity to work closely with colleagues across the firm, including partners. I completed a week’s work experience in the Lease Consultancy team and found the atmosphere in the firm welcoming and sociable which further cemented my desire to work at the company.

How did you find the interview process? 

Overall, I enjoyed the interview experience, and found it less intimidating than other companies. The process was less complicated as Allsop weren’t expecting you to jump through unnecessary hoops.

On arrival at the first interview, we were welcomed by current graduates for an informal conversation which was a great opportunity to get an insight in what the company and job would entail.

My first interview was undertaken by two partners which indicated that the company viewed the graduate interviews as of high importance. People across the firm in a range of positions were giving you their time – it felt a lot more personal than other interviews I have experienced.

Given my non property background I found the competency-based interview more challenging. Despite this the overall exercise was very interesting and not off putting. I was able to put my own stamp on the project-based task and came away with a feel of what the job would entail day-to-day.

What was your first rotation?

My first rotation was in the Receivership team, the perfect foundation upon which to start my career. Receivership bridges the commercial and residential departments by dealing with a wide range of asset classes. As a graduate I assisted in all aspects of case management. The role provided exposure to both strategy formation and report writing, as well as the day-to-day running of cases. This involved instructing stakeholders such as agents and solicitors and managing the sale process of properties to obtain best price. I found receivership branched out from a professional seat and I developed skills which are transferable to every team across the company.


Where did you go next?

After Receivership I rotated into Residential Auctions. As a central part of the company, I think a seat in an auction team is imperative. The auction process itself is incredibly interesting and a very unique experience which isn’t available at many other companies. Day to day the job is very fast paced, which helps develop time management skills. As a graduate you’ll find yourself in a position of responsibility where you will be out of the office inspecting lots, producing marketing particulars, undertaking appraisals and answering phone calls. This seat really helped to build my confidence because I got the opportunity to deal directly with, and build relationships with, clients from the get-go. You really feel you are a valued member of the team and can physically see your contributions to the company through the sale of your auction lots.


How did Allsop help you prepare for your APC

Allsop provides an incredible amount of support throughout the APC process. The company arrange for external support, involving both group workshops and one-to-one support which helps to provide a structure and clarity to the overall two-year programme.

Internally the support is more informal. Within each team each graduate gets a supervisor who provides day to day support, guidance on what is required of your submission, and ensures you get the relevant experience required.  

Given the structure of the graduate scheme there are always a number of surveyors who have recently completed their APC who are able to provide a first-hand account of the current procedure. On the other end of the spectrum there are a number of assessors throughout the company who are able to provide up to date advice as to how the assessments may take place.

As you approach your APC assessment the company provides the opportunity for both informal and formal mocks to ensure you are fully prepared.