Interning at deverellsmith has been the highlight of my summer!
Following my application through the 10,000 Black Intern Programme, I found myself interviewing at deverellsmith. When I arrived, I was really pleased with the interview process as other employers had taken a long time, some even multiple months long to respond whilst at deverellsmith it was a swift and efficient experience.
From day one of my six weeklong internship, I felt welcomed and included into the company culture and within each team I joined.
Although I had no previous experience with recruiting or real estate, I was keen to find out whether recruiting would be the career for me long term and how recruiting works within the property market.
What Is Property Recruitment?
deverellsmith is a property recruitment and talent solutions firm, meaning they place people into roles within the property industry. Within the company there are multiple divisions which specialise in different areas of Real Estate.
- Agency specialises in recruiting for estate agent and property management positions.
- New Homes recruits for permanent and temporary positions within new homes.
- DevCon recruits for positions within development and construction companies.
- Management recruit for head office, operations and business support positions within property.
What Is Market Mapping?
Market mapping is the process of evaluating a market to determine the level and quality of talent available, as well as the employment status of key players within that market according to Vaco. It allows recruiters to build a map of an industry and figure where everyone lies in it and who to target.
How Did My Internship Begin?
For my first week I joined the Agency team headed up by Tom Lambourne, with Ryan Doyle – Team Leader in EstateAgency looking after me whilst I was there. I was given lots of freedom and responsibility within my first few days and was even calling potential candidates myself to generate leads. This came quite naturally to me as my previous job involved a large amount of time on the phone. I also spent my time researching and mapping the different positions at estate agents and property managers; I quickly realised that mapping was an invaluable skill in recruiting and would be used in every team.
Next up was New Homes, and they had a difficult challenge for me to top my time in Agency. The start of my week was working within the interim, temp and contract department which involved reviewing the previous week’s timesheets. This involved calling and emailing both clients and candidates to fill out or approve their timesheets. I also created projects on LinkedIn to find prospective new candidates and reached out to them. I had even attempted to recruit from my own network of people who I knew were looking for work!
Following New Homes, I joined the DevCon team. The nature of DevCon is typically higher reward, less calling and more mapping and research. I shadowed calls done by the legendary Joseph Morris – Senior Business Manager in Accounting & Finance and Craig Douglas – Business Manager in DevCon with most of my time spent mapping potential candidates and clients. A large proportion of people targeted by DevCon are senior personnel and heads of departments, so it was interesting to see how often these individuals move companies and why. Whether it was for increased compensation, better work life balance or better career progression.
The Vital Need for Data and Research.
The data and research team are a unique addition to deverellsmith. Since they work from home and are in once a week, I spent a day on their team with Joshua Wybourn-Whyte – Research Assistant for D&R and Rachel Blight – Senior Resourcer for D&R for to help them with mapping out candidates for DevCon but also to find leads for vacancies so we could approach them to offer our services. Mapping for a whole day can be very challenging as it is quite monotonous and not much variation in what you do but is a critical element of high service recruitment.
Moving On to the Marketing Team…
Marketing is a much smaller team with only 2 people, who always have a large list of work to be completed. I really enjoyed the work the marketing team gave me, like creating LinkedIn posts, filming videos and creative blog writing, as it drew from skills I had developed from my own business and from making a documentary. It was also interesting to see the behind the scenes work and social media marketing that goes into a successful business.
Insightful Internal Events
Barstool talks are internal events hosted on Fridays often to discuss topics such as Pride or Neurodivergence, providing a nice respite from work. These are given regularly by members of the company or sometimes external speakers. One of my favourites was on neurodivergence presented by Ryan Doyle – Team Leader & Mental Health First Aider and James Campion – Managing Director, where I learnt about autism and other types of neurodiversity.
And the finish at 3pm on a Friday is easily one of my favourite things!
What Were My Biggest Lessons?
My time at deverellsmith has been invaluable, giving me lessons to take into the professional world. It has given me a real insight into the world of recruiting AND that of real estate. Over the six weeks I learnt how to communicate effectively with candidates but also my co-workers which I hadn’t previously had the opportunity to due to Covid. I also learnt the importance of networking and having a large, high-quality network for your professional life in recruitment.
Finally, I now understand the importance of culture within a company. Recruiting often is associated with a high staff turnover so fostering a culture where people are nice and friendly is the key to attracting and retaining high quality talent.
What Are My Future Plans?
My future plans are to work at another internship for the rest of summer in investment management also at Cannon Street. After that I will study for a Masters in Human Evolution and Behaviour at UCL.
Learn more about what it is like to work at deverellsmith here.