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News & opinion

7 NOV 2018

Anna at the helm

Earlier this year we welcomed Anna Keys, a Quantity Surveyor at Calfordseaden, as RICS Matrics UK Chair.  Anna shares with us her career journey and why RICS Matrics is essential to those early in the surveying profession. 

My journey

I started my career in surveying by accident.  With no clear career focus at school and having completed my A Levels, I spent the summer working part-time and wondering what to do next. I went to the job centre for advice and was given information on a local Quantity Surveying practice close to home. I had very little knowledge of surveyors or their role, so my dad, an Architectural Technician, pulled out some drawings, showed me his scale rule and explained that “the role of the quantity surveyor is to measure the drawings and record the individual components to enable a contractor to build it”.  I applied for the job and within two weeks had started my career in surveying with DR Nolans & Co. This Quantity Surveying firm gave me the perfect grounding and the discipline I needed to succeed. I moved to Calfordseaden in January 2004 and will soon celebrate 18 years in the industry - it turns out I’m pretty good at surveying! 

The value of RICS Matrics

RICS Matrics, for those early in their careers, has various benefits and I truly believe that the more you put in the more you gain. In the early days of my career, I attended RICS Matrics Kent events and found great support and friendship. I quickly found myself on the local committee in the role of charity fundraiser, and before long became Committee Chair. Local groups deliver defined objectives around inspiring, engaging and promoting the profession. We would host events ranging from APC support and charity events to networking events sponsored by local businesses, winning an award along the way for the 1913 Wilderness Club’s ‘Best Local Group’.

The logical next step was to join the RICS Matrics UK Board which focuses on the bigger strategic picture. Now in my sixth year on the Board, and in my current role as National Chair, I have grown tremendously in confidence, with special thanks to Karen Rogers, our RICS staff member, who guides us and provides encouragement and support. 

Onwards and upwards

After several months of reviewing the values and purpose of RICS Matrics I am excited by the fact that later this year I will be sharing a refreshed strategy and vision; which will ensure the organisation remains relevant to the younger profession, providing the leaders of tomorrow and ensuring that younger members remain intellectually curious helping shaping the future of the profession. We are aware that change takes time, and with only a year at the helm, it is important to have the full support of the board and Vice Chair, Natasha Tyler (Powell Williams) to take the group forward and grow.

In addition to all the inspiring changes with RICS Matrics I am also encouraged by the Chairman’s Challenge – which this year will be making a big impact on the very emotional issue of homelessness. Every year, the RICS Matrics UK Chairman has a year-long challenge which raises funds for a chosen charity but also challenges the local groups. This year, I have chosen to support LandAid with ‘Pledge 150’ in a bid to end youth homelessness. With my work in the Social Housing sector, it seemed a natural fit to support RICS with Pledge 150.

Find out more about the Chairman's Challenge

Lastly, I would like to invite everyone to join RICS Matrics across the UK in celebrating its 130th birthday in 2019.  Keep an eye out for local events and details of the national celebration.