Interview with LABC Newcomer of the Year, Courtney Bryan

LABC newcomer of the year awards

Introducing Courtney Bryan, winner of the LABC Newcomer of the Year award in the Grand Finals 2022. Courtney will be sharing what it is like to be a part of Building Control and how it felt to be a winner.


What is your current job title and how long have you worked within this role?

I’m currently an Assistant Building Control Surveyor. I started working for Lewisham Building Control as a Trainee Building Control Surveyor in May 2021. 


What influenced/inspired you to decide to work in public service building control?

The opportunity to continually learn and progress in Public Service Building Control. 

Working for a Local Authority means you must carry out additional statutory functions such as dangerous structures and enforcement. As a result, I believe a career as a Public Service Building Control Inspector will always be varied with opportunities to continuously learn and progress. 


What do you enjoy most about your current role? 

I enjoy the balance between site inspections and office work. I am in a great work environment where I receive the support required for my career development from both my Local Authority and LABC. I also enjoy the fact that I have qualified colleagues who will help me overcome difficult tasks.  


What’s a typical day like in building control for you?

I start my day by checking the plans and the previous inspection notes for my site visits. I’ll then plan my journey starting with the closest inspection to the furthest (this may change due to requested inspection times). 

Once I’ve completed my inspections, I would return to the office to upload my inspection notes and other evidence such as photographs. Emails and other tasks set by my manager are also done within this time. 


What qualification/s have you completed with us and why did you decide to undertake these qualification/s?

I’ve completed the CIOB Level 4 in Public Service Building Control and I’m currently in the process of completing Level 5. 

I chose to undertake these qualifications as I believe it is beneficial to work and study simultaneously. This is the perfect way of acquiring the practical and theoretical knowledge needed to become a fully qualified Building Control Surveyor.  


What do you feel is most beneficial about working and studying at the same time?

I believe the most beneficial part of working and studying simultaneously is the fact that as I work through the modules on the Building Control Surveying Diploma, I can apply that knowledge almost immediately and gain on-the-job experience. 

The course focuses on topics that are strictly Building Control. As a result, I am able to apply that knowledge in my day-to-day job.


How has your new qualification(s) and studies helped you in a positive way, within your current role, and for your future career prospects?

Due to completing Level 4 with LABC I am now able to attain an Associate position with The Chartered Association of Building Engineers. I can navigate the statutory instruments almost effortlessly to carry out my day-to-day functions. 

The course has also given me confidence on site as I am now able to clearly explain the relevant requirements to clients. I also believe that these courses are preparing me for the BSCF validation which will prove my competency as an Assistant Building Control Surveyor.  


What’s next for you in your career (please let us know if you are moving on to your next qualification with us?). 

Once I’ve successfully completed Level 5, I wish to pursue the Building Control Degree at Wolverhampton University which is designed and developed in collaboration with LABC. 

This will help me to become a chartered member of two of the following bodies: RICS, CABE or CIOB. My focus will then shift to pursue the title of a Specialist Building Inspector or a possible Senior Building Control Surveyor role.


What advice would you give to someone considering joining local authority building control as an apprentice/trainee?

I would advise any trainee or apprentice to go for it. Building Control is in demand and there are several opportunities in this role. 

This sector has a clear and obvious route for progression. I’ve received help and support throughout my journey and as part of the LABC network, I believe this is the same for new entrants throughout England and Wales. 


How does it feel to be part of a 3,500 strong network of local authority building control professionals? 

I feel honoured as this is a respected profession throughout the country. All legal building work must be approved by Building Control which ensures compliance with the Building Regulations. This gives me a sense of gratitude knowing I am a part of this community. 


What’s the most rewarding part about your job?

The most rewarding part of my job is working alongside builders to find an agreeable solution. During this process I try to learn from experienced builders with the aim to return the favour by updating them on changes to the building regulations.  


How did it feel to be recognised as the national winner in the LABC Awards for Newcomer of the Year?

I am certainly gratified and delighted that my hard work and determination have been recognised. I was also happy that my local authority colleagues were present at the LABC awards as they have invested heavily in my development and winning the award was a great way to say thank you.   


How do you think winning the award will help you in your career in local authority building control? 

This award has certainly improved my confidence and energised my willingness to learn. These two attributes will indeed secure my future in Building Control as the more I learn the better I will be at my Job.  


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