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Graduate Stories

James Lucas
Building Surveyor

People were always telling me that variety is the spice of life, but I never really thought about it until I started work at Stace.

I got a RICS accredited Masters in Building Surveying at Nottingham Trent University and I’m now finishing the Stace Graduate Scheme and enrolling for APC accreditation. Working with Stace has given me a platform to work on some of the biggest and most interesting projects with some of the most important clients in the country.

My day can involve anything, from using autoCAD for design work to drafting payment certificates, undertaking site inspections and drafting reports for clients or senior management. This could be at the new Tottenham Hotspur development, Merlin Entertainments Inc theme parks, Epping Forest District Council, the Royal Household or any of a number of the local businesses we work on.

I really enjoy how varied the job is. In the space of a week, I will probably be out of the office for a couple of days and even when I’m in the office no two days are the same. This gives me a great level of exposure. I’m mainly helping more senior surveyors but I’m increasingly finding myself becoming a member of the project teams, rather than just supporting my colleagues.

People were always telling me that variety is the spice of life, but I never really thought about it until I started work at Stace.

I work closely with a couple of Stace partners. They’re great mentors and always willing to help – but there’s plenty of opportunities to get stuck in and get on with things by myself.

At the start of a project, I’ll visit the client and site with a senior surveyor and then, as time goes on, I’ll become the main point of contact for the client, visiting the project, attending meetings, drafting reports and so on. I have to ensure reports and inspections are up to date and issued on time to clients. I manage the subcontractors, helping to solve any issues that crop up. It’s up to me to assist the partners and my colleagues to ensure the deadlines for my projects are met.

Nothing can prepare you for the jolt of working a full week after three years of lying in and missing lectures. This is why finding yourself in a company like Stace is so important. They helped me make the transition and have made it much less daunting than it could have been.

As well as developing my building surveying knowledge and skills, I’ve also accrued a strong business acumen and developed my communication skill with clients, colleagues, partners or contractors.

If I had to give any advice to other graduates, I’d say sign up to the APC as soon as possible and ensure you get as much out of it as you can.


Sophie (Zhe) De Montalembert
Project Manager
Rupam Patel
Monitoring Surveyor
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