Publication - Strategy/plan

Building standards verification service: workforce strategy

A strategy which supports the development of a workforce that has the competency and capability to deliver a first-class service.

Building standards verification service: workforce strategy
Part 2 – Collective Action

Part 2 – Collective Action

5.0  Partnership Approach

The workforce strategy has been developed with partners directly affected by the challenges ahead and who will benefit from its successful delivery. Ongoing development of the strategy with a partnership approach is essential to achieving our shared goals and ensure the building standards verification service is fit for the future.

Scottish Government's approach to working collaboratively with partners was first established in 2019 through the Building Standards Futures Board and with the creation of a Workforce Strategy Working Group to direct and inform the commitments and actions included in this document. 

The contributions from members of the working group have ensured the strategy is rooted in the real world and the results will produce the kind of change required to support development of the building standards profession.

The Working Group comprised representatives from:

  • Local Authority verifiers (LAs)
  • Local Authority Building Standards Scotland (LABSS)
  • Scottish Personnel and Development Scotland (SPDS)
  • Heads of Planning Scotland (HoPS)
  • Skills Development Scotland (SDS)
  • Colleges Scotland
  • Edinburgh Napier University
  • Glasgow Caledonian University
  • Construction Industry Training Board (CITB)
  • Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS)
  • Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB)
  • Chartered Association of Building Engineers (CABE)
  • Chartered Institute of Architectural Technologists (CIAT)
  • Institution of Fire Engineers (IFE)
  • Local Authority Building Control (LABC)

Members of the working group have an ongoing role in taking forward the actions to deliver the strategy. Their expertise will be valuable and influential to the work ahead. 

The Scottish Government has a leadership role to bring parties together to work in partnership on common goals and finding the right solutions that are practical and viable. It is based on a determination to:

Education provision

Work with academic and skills partners to develop new and expanded learning options to help close the skills gap.

Raise esteem and profile

Raise the esteem and profile of the building standards profession so it is recognised as a modern and rewarding career for the profession to grow.

Support effective succession planning

Support local government with succession planning and workforce development activities.

5.1 Verifiers and HR leads

At a local level, emphasis is placed on managers working closely with their corporate HR teams to ensure the building standards verification service is properly reflected in the local authority's succession planning and workforce development plans. Managers are best placed to predict levels of demand on the service and ensure this is matched with supply of the appropriately skilled staff to deliver to that demand.

The Scottish Government recognises that local managers may require support to engage proactively with HR teams on these matters. Therefore early and ongoing communication and engagement with HR specialists is necessary to address resourcing issues and achieve their business objectives. 

A resource library of workforce templates will help managers to take a more direct role in all workforce planning activities.

5.2  Collective action to promote building standards careers

Promotion of the building standards profession can be done most effectively by the people in those job roles who can speak from their lived experience. On that basis, an Ambassadors' Network and related outreach programme will be developed and delivered by people already in the profession. Volunteers will be sought to participate in activities with schools, colleges, universities, job fairs and at professional networking events to raise awareness of what the building standards profession does and the opportunities to choose a relevant course of study and work in particular roles. National coordination with support from the Developing the Young Workforce (DYW) network, local authorities as employers and LABSS will be required to ensure volunteers are supported and their activities reach the right people.

Promotional material will be developed to promote the building standards profession and made available to verifiers, professional institutions and the Ambassadors' Network to ensure there is a consistent and visible public face to the profession. The materials will support effective communication about the benefits of working in building standards. Career information will be developed in partnership with Skills Development Scotland and their national network of Careers Advisers to ensure anyone with an interest can find the information they need about their future career path. 

6.0  Sustainable Workforce

Succession planning is a practical process for identifying how verifiers ensure they are able to sustain their capacity and capabilities, and fill key roles. The outputs of succession planning form a vital part of a workforce plan, setting out the staffing requirements for the team in the short and medium to long term. This activity is fundamental to a verifier's ability to meet the requirements of the verification Operating Framework by having the right levels of staffing who are competent, qualified and experienced.

Analysis of the current workforce shows that there is a major challenge in maintaining and developing the workforce to the required operational levels needed to sustain an effective service. More focus is therefore needed on the key challenges to build and maintain the right resources. 

Approach

Practical succession planning by local managers will be carried out with the corporate HR leads within each local authority. This activity will ensure there are the right numbers of people in the right roles, with the right skills, in the right locations when they are needed. This is the foundation to ensure the verifier has a sustainable team to consistently deliver the service.

Currently, corporate-level succession and workforce planning activities could do more to represent the requirements of the verification service and do not support local managers to build a realistic workforce plan. Local managers need to use succession and workforce planning activities to better understand that demand is matched or balanced with the supply of the appropriately skilled staff. 

At a national level, understanding the future demand on the service is essential for influencing funding decisions and provision of the appropriate education and training opportunities, development of new training offers and tailoring of careers advice when attracting new people into the profession.

Table 1: Local Level
Commitment Outcome Action Timescale Partners responsible for delivery of the action
1.1 Refresh existing workforce plans to address capability and capacity. Strengthened workforce plans that address the capability and capacity issues facing verifiers. HR leads and Building Standards Managers to update workforce planning to recognise future skill requirements, the workforce demographic and build operational resilience into service delivery. Years 1-2 LA employers
1.2 Build additionality and effective succession planning by increased use of modern apprenticeships. Clearly defined entry points for career starters to help them build a career in the building standards profession. Local authorities to develop a vocational pathway for modern and graduate apprentices to enter the building standards profession where possible. Years 1-2 LA employers
    Verifiers to build a talent pipeline through increased use of modern and graduate apprenticeships that supports succession planning. Years 1-3 LA employers

I joined Moray Council Local Authority in 2002 as an Admin Assistant/WPO in Planning and Building Standards. I spent four years in this role getting to know each service. It was clear to me early on that I 'clicked' with Building Standards. I really enjoyed the Admin role that came with Building Standards, typing up Schedules, getting to know the terminology, looking at the plans while stamping approved warrants, I was fascinated by the whole process.

In 2006 I moved roles into the post of Systems Technical Assistant. This was an extremely busy role, dealing with all incoming applications, mail and emails. In 2013 the services split with me being dedicated to Building Standards work. Over the next four and a half years, sharing an office with the Officers, the knowledge and experience gained was invaluable. Listening and being aware of all the different types of jobs that were ongoing, discussions taking place and learning the technical terminology, along with being able to delve deeper into my post, made me realise I really wanted to progress my career in Building Standards.

In late 2017, an opportunity arose with a Building Standards Assistant being advertised. I applied and was successful starting the role in early 2018. As much as I was excited for the opportunity to move on I was as equally nervous as I was leaving behind a job which I had done for 11 years and absolutely loved. In the post of Building Standards Assistant, I was checking minor applications, carrying out completion certificates inspections, dealing with consultations and carrying out desk duties. I came to the post with no construction experience behind me so I knew I had a very steep learning curve ahead of me but with fantastic in house training and a two year HNC in Construction Management in 2019 things started to come together. 

In January 2020, a post of Building Standards Officer was advertised. I applied, was successful and started the next stage of my career as a Building Standards Officer. I know I still have a lot of training ahead of me but by moving on and checking more complex applications, being on site more often, I am confident my knowledge will grow the same way as it did in my previous roles and I can't wait to see where this job takes me.

I have now worked in Building Standards for almost 18 years and I could not imagine working anywhere else. Building Standards is a great service and has shown that there are opportunities to progress within. I work alongside a fantastic team who are always there to help me, I couldn't be doing what I am doing without them. I am very lucky to say I love my job!

7.0  Skilled Workforce

Building standards professionals are required to keep abreast of technical changes affecting their capabilities to deliver the service, such as construction techniques and materials. The workforce requires a wide complement of skills and behaviours to ensure they deliver a reliable service that meets or exceeds customers' expectations. The ever evolving nature of digital technology presents one of the skills challenges facing the verification service as it embraces the opportunities for working smarter by using technology to improve service delivery.

It is important that all building standards staff have access to education and training courses, programmes and resources to develop a competent and professional workforce across Scotland. 

There are currently in the region of 18 courses delivered by around 20 further and higher education institutions. These courses cover a range of building design and construction disciplines that have relevance for people working in a building standards role. However, there are significant aspects of the content that is not a good match for building standards which leads to gaps in essential learning.

Approach

Our approach is inclusive and recognises the importance of providing options for upskilling existing staff. Continuing Professional Development opportunities will be strengthened and the availability of accredited training courses will be expanded where possible to meet the evolving skills needs of the verification service. Whilst positive action will support succession planning, it is necessary to ensure career entry points and progression paths are available for people at any age and from any background. Introducing apprentices into trainee and junior roles will improve the strength and depth of the verification service over time. Investing in the development of a more balanced demographic and a successful "grow your own" approach to developing a talent pipeline are essential for verifiers to meet their resourcing demand in the longer term. 

The strategy includes the development of a Competency Assessment System (CAS) for building standards staff supported by a self-assessment Competence Matrix. The CAS provides a consistent set of competencies that are linked to relevant training and work-based learning options to support attainment. The longer-term goal is for the CAS be embedded into the Professional Framework.

The Competence Matrix will be used to define the level of competence required for different building standards job roles based on increasing levels of complexity and risk attached to building warrant applications. The Competence Matrix aligns with the technical and procedural requirements of the building standards legislation and is intended to cover all staff involved in service delivery. The Competence Matrix will be subject to regular review to ensure it reflects current practice and emerging training needs such as Building Information Modelling, Modern Methods of Construction and product certification. The findings will form the evidence required to support the development of new training modules to adapt existing courses and create entirely new courses to fill the skills gap identified by the Competence Matrix.

Table 2: National Level
Commitment Outcome Action Timescale Partners responsible for delivery of the action
2.1 Support the development of educational pathways and entry points into the building standards profession. Enhanced training and development opportunities. Develop and publish a national route map of qualification pathways and related career entry points. Year 1 LA Employers Scottish Government  LABSS Education providers
    Develop and publish a national matrix of training and development opportunities for building standards. Year 1 Scottish Government  LABSS
    Support the development of a wider range of accredited training courses appropriate to the building standards profession. Year 1-3 LA Employers Scottish Government  LABSS Professional bodies e.g. RICS, CIOB, CABE, CIAT, IFE
    Investigate the feasibility of an MA framework and consider adapting other MA routes in Architectural Technology or Building Surveying. Year 1 Scottish Government  LABSS SDS CITB
    Work with construction industry professional institutions to expand the range of continuing professional development opportunities. Year 1-3 Scottish Government  LABSS Professional bodies e.g. RICS, CIOB, CABE, CIAT, IFE, RIAS, IStructE
2.2 Support the development of national learning and development hubs. Local access to training across professional disciplines. Explore options with LABSS and local authorities to develop a pilot learning and development hub. Year 1-3 LA Employers Scottish Government  LABSS
    Support the expansion of learning and development hubs to build a network across consortia areas. Year 1-3 LA Employers Scottish Government  LABSS
Table 3: Local Level
Commitment Outcome Action Timescale Partners
3.1 Embed the Competency Assessment System/Professional Framework across all verifiers. Identification of the skills gaps and training needs of everyone working in the building standards profession. Building Standards Managers to implement the Competency Assessment System within the verification service. Year 1-2 LA Employers
    All staff in the verification service to complete a skills self-assessment profile to identify training needs. Year 1-2 LA Employers
    Scottish Government and LABSS to work with partners in the education sector to improve provision of building standards specific training courses. Year 1-2 LA Employers Education providers
3.2 Provide support for the provision of education, training and development. Experienced professionals enabled to share their expertise by delivering upskilling courses to newer staff. Local authorities in conjunction with LABSS to develop a proposal for a regional learning and development hub model. Years 1-3 LA Employers LABSS
    Local authorities in conjunction with LABSS to pilot a learning and development hub with a view to expansion across Scotland. Years 1-3 LA Employers LABSS
    Verifiers to identify experienced and skilled staff to offer professional training for new and existing staff. Years 1-3 LA Employers

Success Story: Kirsty Watt – Aberdeen City Council

Throughout my undergraduate Building Surveying studies, I was unsure on what I wanted to specialise in. During my third year of study at Robert Gordons University, students are encouraged to seek a work placement for a term. The placement requires a number of learning outcomes to be achieved and acts as an introduction to working within an organisation. I applied and was accepted to undertake a 6 month work placement within the Building Standards team at Aberdeen City Council. 

At the time of my appointment I had very little awareness of Building Standards. During my placement I undertook both office based and site inspection work; this gave me a greater understanding of Building Standards and the construction industry. Initially my work entailed shadowing colleagues, learning how to check plans and inspect building sites. My colleagues always encouraged me to ask questions, and I had a lot! 

As I gained experience whilst under supervision of others, I was quickly given more responsibilities and my own case load. Having completed my placement, I continued to work on a part time basis and return to my studies. I went on to graduate from my RICS accredited degree obtaining a 2:1 classification in Building Surveying. 

In October 2014 a full-time Building Standards Officer post became available in Aberdeen. Without the experience I had gained from my placement, it is unlikely that I would have had the confidence or knowledge to be a successful applicant. I was successfully appointed the position. Whilst obtaining my degree was crucial, I feel that my on the job experience obtained during my placement was the main contributing factor to my success.

I have now been a Building Standards Officer for over 5 years and my skillset allows me to work on projects ranging from domestic alterations and extensions, multi-plot housing developments, to non-domestic projects such as office accommodation and residential buildings. I am also undertaking my RICS Assessment of Professional Competence, with the hope to being Chartered by 2021. 

The biggest positives that came from my placement was that it gave me a better awareness of the options available to me once I graduated. This helped me decide which role within the Built Environment I wished to pursue. Today I am working in a role I did not previously know existed, with a career, I can see myself in for the foreseeable future and all because of my university placement.

8.0  Professional Framework

A single and nationally consistent professional framework is the starting point to define and raise the profile of the building standards profession. A new professional framework will comprise a set of standardised job roles that will be used to align the existing, and variable, job titles with the more concise set included in the Competency Assessment System. Having this unified terminology to describe the profession is necessary to match job roles to appropriate education and training options. Consistent naming can be used for recruitment exercises across Scotland and everyone can play a part in promoting the profession in a nationally coherent way.

Approach

The development of a professional framework in partnership with LABSS will provide a basis for agreement on the standardised job roles with all 32 local authorities. This work will not require any verifier to change an individual's job role or title. The professional framework will not require a formal re-grading of job roles. The outcome will ensure everyone working in the profession is aligned to a standardised role that indicates their training and development requirements and points to their career progression path.

A job role mapping exercise will be carried once the professional framework has been developed and approved. At this point, managers will complete the mapping for their team to show how job roles align with the professional framework.

The professional framework will be published online showing the direct entry routes into the profession. It will recognise accredited courses by learning providers and professional institutions. The desirable level of qualification required for entry into different job roles will be included on the framework. This will be shown as a specific level on the Scottish Credit and Qualification Framework (SCQF) which provides the necessary alignment with courses available in schools, colleges and universities. 

Table 4: National Level
Commitment Outcome Action Timescale Partners
4.1 Develop a consistent naming convention for building standards. National adoption of streamlined job roles and titles in line with the Competency Assessment System/single Professional Framework. Standardise all references to "Building Standards". Year 1 Scottish Government LA Employers LABSS
  Better understanding that building standards is about achieving compliance and not policing the construction process.     Scottish Government LA Employers LABSS
4.2 Introduce a Professional Framework. Ability to promote careers in a coherent way. Support the development of a national Professional Framework that defines all of the job roles in the verification service to support promotion of careers. Year 1 Scottish Government LA Employers LABSS Professional bodies e.g. RICS, CIOB, CABE, CIAT, RIAS, IStructE and IFE
4.3 Streamline job titles and definitions.   Support all verifiers to complete a mapping exercise to align job roles with the new definitions. Year 1 Scottish Government LA Employers LABSS
4.4 Review the verification Operating Framework and Performance Framework to embed the Competency Assessment System.   Recognise the National Professional Framework in the verification Operating Framework. Year 1 Scottish Government LABSS
    Update and issue revised versions of the verification Operating Framework and Performance Framework recognising use of the Competency Assessment System. Year 1 Scottish Government LABSS
Table 5: Local Level
Commitment Outcome Action Timescale Partners
5.1 Agree to naming convention for "Building Standards". Effective branding of the Building Standards Profession. All verifiers, and stakeholders across the construction industry, to standardise on Building Standards and remove references to Building Control. Year 1 LA Employers
5.2 Map existing job roles to the agreed standardised job roles and definitions. Improved visibility and understanding of job roles to support recruitment and promotion of careers. All verifiers to complete a job role mapping exercise to align building standards teams with the single professional framework. Year 1 LA Employers
    Verifiers to update their role mapping in response to any future restructuring of the service. Annually LA Employers
    Verifiers to use the standard job role titles, definitions and core duties in recruitment exercises. Ongoing LA Employers

Success Story: Danielle Louis – West Lothian Council

After leaving school in 2013 I attended College to study a National Certificate (NC) in Countryside Management then continued on to the Higher National Certificate (HNC) in Countryside and Environmental Management the following year.

I realised soon after achieving my HNC that this was not the career path I really wanted to pursue. I had various short term jobs and eventually started full time employment within the West Lothian Council Contact Centre in 2015. In January 2018 I applied for and was offered the position of Building Standards Technician within the Planning Services team.

With the basic knowledge I had gained from working within the Contact Centre, I then had to learn the ins and outs of the Building Standards service. Dealing daily with general enquiries helped quickly build up my knowledge of legislation such as works that do not require a building warrant and explaining this to customers. This role also helped build my knowledge of not only technical issues but also procedural issues such as the requirements to extend a building warrant and enforcement legislation including dealing dangerous buildings, contacting owners and organising contractors to carry out emergency works.

Throughout this time I was gaining invaluable experience from my colleagues and in the summer of 2018 I was offered the opportunity to study Building Surveying (part-time) at Glasgow Caledonian University. This was too great an opportunity to turn down and although building surveying had never been a career I had thought about prior, working with committed individuals I quickly gained a passion for my work and ensured it was done to a high standard.

Due to having a HNC previously, I was accepted into year 2 of the Surveying course and successfully passed. In August 2019 I applied for the Assistant Building Standards Officers post and was successful. Becoming the Assistant Building Standards Officer has meant I am beginning to assess building warrant applications and continuing with site visits with my colleagues and putting into practice my learning. I am now into my 3rd year of my degree and I am enjoying the challenges that both University and work present. 

This career path I have chosen has presented itself to me when I least expected it and one that I am determined to be successful in. I am now a Student member of RICS and fully intend to enrol on the RICS APC route to becoming a full member of RICS. All this has been possible because my manager and the wider team had the confidence in me to succeed in this career and for that I will be forever grateful for the opportunity. 

9.0  Profession for Everyone

Scottish Government, in connection with the Year of Young People in 2018, identified that lack of awareness of building standards; as a discrete profession in its own right and the career opportunities it offers, as significant barriers affecting attraction and recruitment. Little knowledge of the exact nature of job roles combined with a lack of entry points and career progression routes has left building standards with a low profile when compared with other professional disciplines. 

These issues combined with the older demographic of the workforce has resulted in building standards being consistently undersold as a rewarding career choice. There is an opportunity now to change perceptions and show that building standards makes a substantial contribution to our communities and supports growth in Scotland's economy.

In response, our partnership approach will raise the profile and esteem of the building standards profession to promote the benefits of working in the verification service. Efforts to grow and diversify the workforce will encourage a more inclusive profession. The work will also look at promoting the wider benefits package available to staff and highlighting the career opportunities available

Approach

The national and local commitments will support more active engagement by verifiers with those seeking a profession in building standards and include engagement with parents, guardians and teachers to influence career decisions. A new network of Building Standards Ambassadors will work with Regional Coordinators from Developing the Young Workforce (DYW) to take part in outreach activities in schools, colleges, universities and at events such as job fairs. Volunteers from building standards teams who are well placed to take part in outreach, will talk about the different job roles available and engage positively with people who have an interest in joining the profession. Outreach activities will be designed to build the relevant work skills, career options and knowledge of the world of work through skills sessions, career insights and workplace site visits.

To support this work, the range and availability of information about building standards careers will be improved. Materials will be developed in partnership with Skills Development Scotland that will enable Careers Advisers to speak about the profession and support anyone with an interest in a building standards job role. It is acknowledged that the advice of parents, family and friends on career choices is important. So it is vitally important that career information is up to date, detailed and provided in real-time. Information will be developed for publication on My World of Work which is a trusted and key source of career information. The information will emphasise the offer of a rewarding career path ranging from junior and trainee roles up to Senior Surveyor or Principal Building Standards Officer. 

Outreach activities will also engage with experienced professionals in other construction-related disciplines who are interested in a new career in building standards. Ambassadors will be well-placed to have meaningful conversations with potential "career changers" to explain the benefits and opportunities of working in the verification service. This aspect of outreach will also seek to encourage relevant tradespeople to consider re-training to develop a career in the building standards profession.

The people already working in the profession are its biggest asset and there is much to be gained through greater collaboration and mentoring. A new Building Standards Network, open to all staff, at all grades with all levels of experience will be created to provide a platform for working and sharing best practices across local authority boundaries. The network will be self-managed and administered through a social network. The purpose and rules of engagement will be agreed with local authorities and LABSS but the intention is that all staff will be able to use the network to find learning and development opportunities such as work shadowing, identify useful training courses and professional events, meet-up socially with colleagues in other local authorities and benefit from informal peer-to-peer networking. 

Table 6: National Level
Commitment Outcome Action Timescale Partners
6.1 Promote the building standards profession as a rewarding and fulfilling career. Raised profile and esteem of the building standards profession. Develop and publish information on the My World of Work platform to promote the profession. Year 1 Scottish Government LA Employers LABSS Professional bodies e.g. RICS, CIOB, CABE, CIAT, IFE, SDS
    Develop career awareness information and supporting marketing materials about the profession. Year 1 Scottish Government LABSS RICS, CIOB, CABE, CIAT, IFE, RIAS, IStructE, SDS
    Support the creation of a "New Entrant" award in partnership with LABSS. Year 1 Scottish Government LA Employers LABSS
    Work with LABSS and verifiers (as employers) to promote the benefits of chartered status across professional disciplines. Year 1 Scottish Government LA Employers LABSS
    Work with construction industry professional institutions to promote the benefits of chartered status across professional disciplines. Year 1 Scottish Government LABSS Professional bodies e.g. RICS, CIOB, CABE, CIAT, IFE
6.2 Support the development and organisation of an Ambassadors' Network. An outreach programme of events and activities that builds the profile and attractiveness of building standards job roles. Provide support to the development of an Ambassadors' Network and outreach programme in partnership with LABSS. Years 1-2 Scottish Government LA Employers LABSS Professional bodies e.g. RICS, CIOB, CABE, CIAT, IFE, RIAS, IStructE SDS, DYW
  A Building Standards Network to provide a platform for making wider connections with colleagues Provide support to the development of an online network to support development of the profession in partnership with LABSS. Years 1-2 Scottish Government LA Employers LABSS  Professional bodies e.g. RICS, CIOB, CABE, CIAT, IFE, RIAS, IStructE SDS, DYW
Table 7: Local Level
Commitment Outcome Action Timescale Partners
7.1 Promote the building standards profession as a rewarding and fulfilling career. Raised the profile and esteem of the building standards profession. LABSS to create a Careers section on their website to promote the profession and provide access to career information. Year 1 LA Employers LABSS Professional bodies e.g. RICS, CIOB, CABE, CIAT, IFE, RIAS, IStructE SDS, DYW
    Verifiers to participate in events and conferences to raise the profile and esteem of the profession. Years 1-3 LA Employers LABSS Professional bodies e.g. RICS, CIOB, CABE, CIAT, IFE, RIAS, IStructE SDS, DYW
    Verifiers to increase the number of secondments, work experience placements and internships to create an open and accessible profession. Years 1-3 LA Employers LABSS
7.2 Support the development and organisation of an Ambassadors' Network. An outreach programme of events and activities to build the profile and attractiveness of building standards job roles. LABSS to lead the creation of an Ambassadors' Network of volunteers to promote careers in building standards. Years 1-2 LA Employers LABSS Professional bodies e.g. RICS, CIOB, CABE, CIAT, IFE, RIAS, IStructE SDS, DYW
  A Building Standards Network to provide a network for cross-boundary connections with colleagues Verifiers to encourage staff to volunteer as an ambassador and facilitate time to participate in outreach activities. Years 1-2 LA Employers LABSS
    LABSS to lead the development of a Building Standards Network for employess in partnership with verifiers. Years 1-2 LA Employers LABSS

Success Story: Callum Ord – Moray Council

Before becoming a Building Standards officer I worked for a number of small local Architectural Practice's as a fully qualified Architectural Technologist, with a BSc (Hons) degree from Robert Gordon University, which involved drafting and submitting Planning and Building Warrant drawings and applications on a wide range of small to large Domestic and Non-Domestic proposals. Alongside this work I was also working towards gaining a professional qualification and becoming a member of the Chartered Institute of Architectural Technologists and held an Associate Membership for 2 full years before becoming a Building Standards Officer. 

My previous experience of working as an Architectural Technologist helped me gain a basic understanding of the Scottish Building Regulations as unfortunately my University degree did not prepare me in the basic knowledge of dealing with the Building Regulations. During my time working in practice I was always intrigued to develop my knowledge and understanding of the Building Regulations. During the winter of 2015 my wife saw a position for a Building Standards Officer for Moray Council, she encouraged for me to apply. However, I had a number of concerns about not pursuing my professional qualification as an Architectural Technologist. The job was then re-advertised in which my wife again strongly encouraged me to apply for in which I took her advice and applied for the position. After a successful interview I was appointed the position of Building Standards Officer. 

Once I started working as a Building Standards Officer I quickly realised that there is more to the position than I had originally thought. This included learning about the different procedures and different applications, such as amendment of warrants, late completion certificates alongside carrying out site inspections as well as developing my foundation knowledge of the Building Regulations. Since 2016 I have managed to develop my own personal skills (alongside the help from other members of staff and qualified Building Standards Officers) I am now capable of dealing with verifying small to large scale domestic applications, including onsite verifications. 

Recently I have been working on developing my knowledge of the Non-Domestic Technical Handbook and have started working on Non-Domestic applications while being overseen by other experienced officers. My aim for the future in my role as a Building Standards officer is to become fully experienced on checking all range of applications from small scale to large scale Domestic and Non-Domestic applications such as large scale plotted developments, education buildings, hotels etc. As a part of this development I am starting to work towards gaining a full membership of the Chartered Association of Building Engineers. 


Contact

Email: Gordon.gilchrist@gov.scot