Getting chartered is more than adding a few letters on your email signature.
Chartership is recognition of a minimum level of competence by an organisation in your field. In the quantity surveying world, the premier organisation is the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS). Going through this process will train you to become confident to stand on your own two feet, and it will give clients, colleagues and the industry at large confidence in your abilities.
Chartership alone won't define you, but it will open doors for you that you didn't know existed.
Benefits of chartership
The benefits of getting chartered can be summarised in three ways:
Financial - Newly chartered surveyors are always hot property. You will be hunted by recruiters as soon as the newly chartered list gets published. In the UK expect a £10k-£15k raise. If your existing firm offers you less, don't worry - someone else will pay more. Remember though, the grass isn't always greener on the other side. Although the extra money is good, but if the environment makes you hate your job - it's not really worth it. Be very careful when fielding offers.
Psychological - Once you get chartered it feels like you have "levelled-up". It will give you the confidence to walk into any room and represent your client without fear. I am not joking. As soon as I got chartered I felt the same way. I think it has to do with the fact that you have worked so hard to get to that point, and once your are approved it's like a validation from the wider QS community that you are a competent professional.
Career Options - The world is your oyster once you get chartered. Having the letters "MRICS" will now give overseas organisations the confidence in your abilities. If you want to work abroad - you can now do so. Getting chartered will also help you get promotions, more responsibilities and further progression in your existing place of work.
There is no real downside to getting chartered. It will be hard work, but I promise that it will be worth it!
How to get chartered
There are many routes to chartership depending on your existing qualifications and background.
The RICS have broken this down in the following link: Routes to Chartership (MRICS). The most common method is via the Assessment of Professional Competence (APC). This is a rigorous regime where you undertake a period of structured training (either 12 or 24 months) and then get interviewed by the RICS. It is pretty intense. There is a breadth and depth of knowledge which you are expected to know as a bare minimum, so it will take time for you learn the content. You cannot fake it. You will get found out.
The best time to start your chartership journey is yesterday. The next best time is today - right now. Find out what route is best for you and start running. It is a marathon, not a sprint.
If you want to have a chat about how you can get chartered, feel free to message me on LinkedIn!