Data is fundamental to the role of surveyors: much of the provisions of our professional services require and depend on it. All candidates taking the RICS APC are, therefore, required to complete the Data management competency to at least Level 1. Candidates are required to 'demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the sources of information and data, and of the systems applicable to their area of practice, including the methodologies and techniques most appropriate to collect, collate and store data.'
Level 2 means providing evidence of practical application, understanding the relevance of information gathered and analysing the data.
At Level 3, candidates must provide evidence of reasoned advice given to clients and others on the use and practical application of the information collected and systems used. They must also specify the most appropriate way to collect, analyse and apply data.
In a surveyor's day-to-day activities, data is integrated into numerous processes. There are some fundamental questions to consider when creating data outputs, such as cost estimates.
In the UK, the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) under the Data Protection Act 2018 has affected the way businesses handle data. Be aware of this and its impact on you and your day-to-day business activities.
The GDPR applies to personal data, meaning any information through which someone can be directly or indirectly recognised, such as name, identification number, location data or online identifier. Significant fines are applicable if firms do not comply with these regulations.
Once your summary of experience has been completed and focus moves to the final assessment, remember that while mandatory competencies can be questioned directly by assessors, they can also be covered during questioning on other technical competencies or in case study questioning. Make sure you are prepared to address Data management at any point during your interview.
Data is a valuable commodity, and its influence and importance look set to grow exponentially. Understanding how to work with it is vital for any surveyor.
David Cohen FRICS is an APC chair assessor and auditor, a founding director of APC Academy and Amicus Property Consultants, and a member of the Construction Journal editorial advisory group email@example.com
Related competencies include: Data management