Forty apprentices and counting

Posted on: 13 February, 2024

Mark Winsor, Talent and Development Manager at Lambert Smith Hampton, believes younger generations will play a crucial part in helping the built environment overcome the challenges of sustainability, diversity and artificial intelligence (AI).

Name: Mark Winsor

Job role: Talent and Development Manager

Company: Lambert Smith Hampton (LSH)

In his role as Lambert Smith Hampton’s (LSH) Talent and Development Manager, Mark looks after a growing cohort of over 40 apprentices across a number of disciplines. The company launched its apprenticeship scheme after the Apprenticeship Levy came into force in 2017 and it has grown every year since then.

“Most of our apprentices are with UCEM doing surveying degree apprenticeships,” Mark explains. “They offer BSc and MSc qualifications with a range of pathways, so we have people on commercial real estate, building surveying and project management pathways – it’s a really comprehensive offering that has enabled our apprenticeship scheme to go from strength to strength.”

Mark praises apprenticeships not only as a means to recruit a more diverse group of employees, but also as a way to upskill existing staff: “We’ve had quite a few success stories of people who’ve come in doing admin roles, who have then developed a certain level of skill that we’ve been able to capitalise on by getting them onto a RICS accredited degree apprenticeship.”

The main challenge in attracting more young people to the industry through apprenticeships and other training schemes is, in Mark’s view, a lack of awareness of the range of careers that are possible. “In schools, and particularly in colleges, there just isn’t the knowledge of careers in property. It’s stereotypically limited to estate agency or construction,” he says.

LSH actively encourages staff, including apprentices, to go into schools to give careers talks: “Apprenticeships have given us that opportunity to be able to connect with more schools and colleges and work with careers advisors to spread the word about the full range of jobs you can actually do in the built environment.”

Mark sees a huge role for apprentices to play in solving the emerging challenges of the built environment as a sector: “We’re dealing with a whole host of issues, from diversity and sustainability through to the use of technology and the increasing role of AI. The next generation of apprentices will play a crucial role in addressing these challenges by bringing in fresh perspectives and knowledge of new technologies and sustainable practices.”