List of LABSS Ambassadors
All of the LABSS Ambassadors are working Building Standards professionals who have volunteered their time to help develop the Building Standards work force. Below is a small introduction to each of our Ambassadors and their experience.
Planning and Building Standards Service Manager - Inverclyde Council
After studying an HNC in Construction at Forth Valley College, I joined Clackmannanshire Council as a Building Standards Technician. I studied part time on day release at Glasgow Caledonian University, obtaining a Building Surveying (BSc) Hns degree. I spent 6 years working across the South of England in the Building Control profession before moving back to Scotland where I am now with Inverclyde Council. I have worked as an Associate Lecturer at Glasgow Caledonian University during term time, delivering guest lectures on Building Regulations.
The Building Standards profession is a truly rewarding and challenging role – it is pivotal to the construction industry and ensuring the built environment is safe, sustainable, and environmentally friendly. My career in Building Standards has been hugely enjoyable and I am challenged each day to exercise good decision making on buildings of all shapes and sizes. As a Building Standards professional, you are responsible for ensuring the health, safety and wellbeing of people in and around buildings and I am proud to advocate Building Standards as a career choice.
Building Standards Officer - West Lothian Council
I originally applied for the Building Standards Technician post whilst I was working in the councils contact centre so had no previous experience within construction or working within building standards. When I was within the role of the Building Standards technician the opportunity arose to attend university and enter at 2nd year to study Building Surveying part time and obtain a degree having already had an HNC in Countryside and Environmental Management. I fully qualified June 2021 with a BSc in Building Surveying which then allowed me to progress my career from the technician shortly followed to the Assistant Building Standards Officer to now having being appointed the Building Standards Officer’s role.
I decided to become an ambassador as I want to let young people know that there are other routes that can be taken rather than going straight to university. I did not leave school and go straight to university and by not doing this I feel that I have gained further experience dealing with the public where I may not have had. Building Standards has provided a lot of opportunities for myself personally but also within our local authority building standards team. Almost all staff members in our team have been able to progress to higher roles with the guidance and encouragement from senior staff members which I find very positive. Working within building standards provides a varying day-to-day schedule allowing for site visits as well as assessing building warrants and also being able to learn from more senior members on larger, more technical projects.
Assistant Building standards Surveyor - Argyll and Bute Council
I saw the Job advertised on My Job Scotland which partially aligned with my Degree in Building Surveying. I spoke to the BS manager at the time and he asked me to apply. I studied Construction in my first year of College, Building Surveying in year 2 then 2 years of Building Surveying at Glasgow Caledonian University.
I currently work in an office where I am the youngest Surveyor at 29. The second youngest is 59 which scared me a little as in less than 5 years I face the risk of losing all my colleagues in my office at once. This made me want to try and encourage younger surveyors to try Building Standards. The range of types of buildings to assess and inspect and advise on makes Building Standards such an attractive career especially in an area like Argyll and Bute council. I could go from assessing a domestic house to a fish farm to signing off on outdoor festivals. The opportunity to learn about construction, buildings and the regulations behind them is second to none. I initially came into Building Standards as a stepping stone to gain experience in the construction industry, however, I now see myself staying in Building Standards as a career.
Building Standards Team Leader - Perth and Kinross Council
How did you end up working in Building Standards? Please note any college / university course or apprenticeship you may have completed I left school in 2007 not really knowing what I wanted to do. An opportunity arose as an apprentice Quantity Surveyor with a local construction firm. During my apprenticeship I studied towards an HNC in Quantity Surveying, which I obtained in 2009, and then went on to study towards a BSc in Quantity Surveying at Robert Gordon University. I enjoyed working in construction but felt that, after 5 years I needed a change. A position for a Trainee Building Standards Officer was advertised at Aberdeen City Council (ACC)which I successfully applied for – this position allowed me to continue to study towards my BSc whilst also learning on the job. I obtained my BSc in Quantity Surveying in 2013 and progressed to the position of Building Standards Officer. ACC supported me towards obtaining membership of the Chartered Association of Building Engineers which I achieved in 2015. I was promoted to Senior Building Standards Officer in March 2019. In October 2019 I left Aberdeen City Council to take up a new role as Building Standards Team Leader at Perth and Kinross Council.
I have enjoyed a successful career so far in Building Standards, one which has given me opportunities to move up into positions of greater responsibility. There is no other job in the construction industry which provides the variety that our job does – one morning you can be looking at a domestic conservatory and by the afternoon you could be on site inspecting a £50 million high school. There are lots of opportunities for training and a great network of support for those looking to obtain membership of a relevant body such as the Chartered Association of Building Engineers, The Chartered Institute of Building or The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.
Assistant Building Standards Surveyor - Perth and Kinross Council
Whilst studying I had the opportunity to visit my local Building Standards office where we had a presentation on the role of a Building Standards professional. This gave me an insight into the profession and ultimately made me choose the career path of Building Standards. I completed a BSc in Surveying at Robert Gordon University in 2018 and shortly after joined Angus Council as a Building Standards Technician. In August 2020, I was successful for the post of Assistant Building Standards Surveyor at Perth and Kinross Council. Since then, PKC have supported me through further training, and I am nearing completion of my full membership for Chartered Association of Building Engineers (CABE).
I became a Building Standards ambassador to promote the profession to others which may be studying a built environment related subject or are currently working in the construction industry and are considering a career change. Every day is different when working in Building Standards. It is an exciting and rewarding career and you can expect to learn through a range of construction site inspections and assessment of Building Warrant applications. The scope of construction projects can vary significantly, from simple domestic housing alterations to multi-million pound developments.
Senior Building Standards Officer - Moray Council
After completing my Bsc in Architecture at the Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen I was on the lookout for a placement position between part 1 and part 2 of the course and in the process stumbled upon the advertisement for the role of Building Standards Officer at Aberdeen City Council. I felt I had a good head for the technical side of design and decided it sounded interesting, so applied. Luckily I was offered the job and accepted, which was one of the best decisions I ever made. After 3 years with Aberdeen City Council I moved to Moray Council in the same role as a Building Standards Officer.
Since then I have achieved my membership with the Chartered Association of Building Engineers (CABE), which Both Moray Council and Aberdeen City Council helped me through. This allowed me to progress and, when the role opened up, become a Senior Building Standards Officer at Moray Council.
At the time I moved to Moray Council I was acutely aware that I was the youngest officer and that succession planning within our service was going to hit a really difficult point in a few short years. When the Ambassadors program was started it seemed an opportunity I couldn’t miss to promote Building Standards as a career and ease these potential future problems so I jumped on board.
Building Standards has been an excellent career for me, with an incredibly varied and engaging workload. One day I may be dealing with an application for a Distillery or large office building, the next being called out to a dangerous building and the next I could be looking at a small extension for a disabled adaptation. With both office and site work in even measures the balance is quite unique in the construction industry.
There are also a lot of progression routes for officers to take, and these vary from authority to authority but with work available throughout Scotland the opportunities are huge.
Building Standards Officer - Aberdeen City Council
I obtained an intern placement with ACC Building Standards whilst in my third year studying at Robert Gordon’s University. During this time I experienced all areas and levels of the Building Standards system by both solo working and through shadowing colleagues, in office and on-site. After graduating I applied for and was successful in obtaining the position of Building Standards Officer. With support from my employer, I have just recently obtained MRICS and I’m now a Chartered Surveyor and with this accreditation I hope to progress further with my Building Standards career.
My manager at the time asked if I could provide a write up of my route into Building Standards as part of the workforce strategy for LABSS. Following this, I have been welcomed into the ambassadors network.
Every day in the role of a Building Standards Officer differs, from inspecting various construction works or dangerous buildings, carrying out licensing inspections to checking plans online. I believe a career in Building Standards can be extremely interesting and rewarding and it is for this reason that I am passionate about highlighting and encouraging others into the profession.
Building Standards Co-ordinator - South Ayrshire Council
I started my journey in Building Standards back in 2006 as a Trainee Building Standards Surveyor with Dumfries and Galloway Council. This enabled me to continue with higher education part time whilst in post gaining practical experience.
During this time, I gained a first class honours degree in Building Surveying at Glasgow Caledonian University alongside other trainees from other local authorities and private practices.
I then went on to become a chartered member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (MRICS) to advance my career in Building Standards.
I had originally applied for a very similar degree at Glasgow Caledonian University when the council had sent information on their ‘Grow your own’ trainee posts to all local schools. It was only via the school, and meeting Building Standards management that I became aware of what Building Standards was and that the opportunity was out there with the trainee posts being open for applications at that time.
I am often asked how you get into the profession, and people are always very curious to find out more about what the job entails.