We recently caught up with Jasmit Bewas, an old colleague of ours at Oyster Partnership.
Jasmit used to work as a Building Control Recruitment Consultant at Oyster but moved away from the team to start a job as a Building Control Officer for a Local Authority. We were interested to hear his take on his change in career. Additionally, we were keen to see what he thought of recruiters, now sitting on the other side of the fence!
So you escaped the world of Recruitment for the dizzying heights of the Building Control world. Tell us a little bit about this, what is Building Control exactly?
Jasmit: Building Control is a set of regulations that need to be followed when a new building is constructed or if an existing building is altered.
What does it mean to be a Building Control Officer?
Jasmit: Building Control Officers (BCOs), are also known as Building Control Surveyors or Building Inspectors. Working in the role of Building Control Surveyor, you’ll make sure that building regulations are followed when houses, offices, and other buildings are designed and constructed and when altered, extended, or converted.
One of the main ways we do this is by ensuring that Building Surveyors are fully carrying out their responsibilities of maintaining, altering, repairing, refurbishing, and restoring buildings.
If a building looks like it will not meet the requirements of the building regulations, you’ll advise on finding a solution. On complex projects, you may be involved at the pre-application stage to comment on design and safety issues, suggesting alternative processes to reduce the risk of delays and save costs.
As a Building Control Surveyor, you are required to work alongside builders, architects, and the client to ensure the project runs as smoothly as possible. This is whilst also making sure that all the rules and regulations are being adhered to.
Being a Building Control Surveyor comes with mass responsibility as your direct decisions affect the health and safety of the end occupants of the building. This means that it’s vitally important to make the right decisions when checking plans and while carrying out a site inspection.
Having been a Recruiter on the Building Control desk at Oyster Partnership, what’s it like being on the other side of the fence?
Jasmit: I think the biggest change was the way of working. Being a Surveyor is a lot more flexible in terms of the working arrangements. Nevertheless, I have heard that Oyster have brought in working from anywhere initiative, which I think is great! One of the things I love about my new job is that my time is split between being out on-site visits and being in the office, whereas at Oyster I spent 90% of the time in the office.
Would you say there are any similarities between the two jobs?
Jasmit: Yes. I have found that communication is key in both recruitment and as a Building Control Surveyor. I need to be able to talk to builders, architects, and clients, making sure that communication is clear between each party throughout the whole process. I think my skills in this area are very much down to my previous work in recruitment.
Do you miss working as a Recruiter?
Jasmit: Oyster Partnership is a very special company, it’s more like a family than anything else. I would say that I miss that sense of comradery and the buzzing atmosphere in the office. However, I love my new job and the diversity and scope it offers me. It excites me more than recruitment did.
Do you get annoyed with Recruiters phoning you all the time?
Jasmit: Well as I am new to the industry many recruiters don’t know I’m doing building control yet, so I don’t get that many phone calls. If I did though, I don’t think I would get annoyed as I understand why they are phoning me; it’s what I was doing at one point.
Now you can see things from the other side, what advice would you give to Recruiters recruiting for your job?
Jasmit: Builder Control Surveyors love to have a chat if you catch them at the right time. On the other hand, if they are on a busy schedule, they don’t want to hear anything. This is even if it benefits them. The best advice I can give is to try to get some inside knowledge about their schedule. That way you can find out when it would be convenient to call them. You will always get so much more traction that way.
What do you think is the most vital benefit a Recruiter can bring to the table?
Jasmit: The ability to get the right person for a role, which without a doubt, comes back to communication skills – I think being a recruiter is all about being a good communicator.
If you can communicate well, and communication is about listening as well as talking, then you can build lasting trusted relationships with people. Being able to listen, and really hear what is needed, gives you great insight into how you can help both your clients and your future recruits. If you can talk to people and build a relationship of trust, then this is the biggest factor in succeeding in Building Control Recruitment.