As part of its expansion strategy, Beresfords, one of the largest independent estate agents in the UK, is investing in future employees and expanding its apprenticeship programme. This year the award winning company intends to continue to hire further apprentices across the agency.
Beresfords has been offering the government-backed scheme since 2010. Apprentices train for 12 months under a training programme, combining work based training with hands on experience. Upon completing the Estate Agency Apprenticeship pathway, successful candidates receive the nationally recognised NVQ Level 2 qualification, as well as a Certificate and Diploma in either Residential Property or Residential Property Lettings & Management and a full time employment contract.
Three of Beresfords’ success stories are Shaun Bull, Domani O’Mahoney and Brandon Crouchman. The former apprentices are now employed full-time at Beresfords’ Chelmsford, Brentwood branches and Head Office, respectively.
Neither Brandon nor Domani had previously considered working in property prior to applying to be an apprentice. Brandon, who is 19 and part of the marketing team, was deterred from university because of the high tuition fees and wanted to find a profession which allowed him to get straight onto a payroll.
“I wanted a career path that allowed me to earn money while I trained, rather than having to incur a mass of debt with no guarantee of a job at the end of it. The apprenticeship scheme was particularly appealing because it offered me the freedom to explore a variety of roles and expand my skill set. You can’t beat the life experience training schemes provide, and they also allow you to get ahead of the game with experience on the job.”
Meanwhile, 20-year-old Domani went as far as being accepted into university before deciding to explore other options that allowed her to learn on the job and gain on-the-job experience. Since completing her apprenticeship last October, the Trainee Negotiator has continued to study for NVQ Level 3 in order to become a part of the National Association of Estate Agents.
Though Domani found there was a lot to learn during the apprenticeship, she likens the experience to learning how to drive:
“There’s a lot to pick up but once you know how to navigate the job then it’s just a case of practice makes perfect! During my training, my colleagues and assessor were always there to advise me whenever I hit road bumps and thanks to their guidance I now have the confidence to really grow into my new role.”
In contrast, Shaun, a 22 year old Senior Negotiator, always wanted to work in property. Having grown up in Writtle near the town’s local branch, Shaun turned down opportunities in other companies to pursue a career with the estate agency. He comments:
“The apprenticeship allowed me to get my foot in the door and, thanks to the structure of the company and fast paced growth, there is a clear path for progression with the company, which gives me something to aspire to on a daily basis.”
Paul Beresford, Managing Director/Chairman at Beresfords, comments:
“We have a very clear expansion strategy and part of being able to achieve this is hiring the right staff. Our apprenticeship scheme has been hugely successful in attracting bright, young, talented people to the profession who would have previously never thought of choosing estate agency as a career. We are delighted to be expanding the programme this year and currently have three roles available across the company.”