Insight Scheme Stories

Savills Insight Programme Scheme programme offers a unique opportunity for 1st year cognate undergraduate university students and final year non-cognate undergraduate students to undertake work shadowing by being mentored by a Savills Graduate for a 1-week period.  Find out what it is like to join us for an Insight placement by reading the profiles of our previous Insight Students.

    Name: Adam Napier

    University & Course: Reading University, BSc Building Surveying

    Pathway: Surveying (Commercial, Development and Residential)

    Team: Valuation, Birmingham

    Personal Profile:

    I am a 2nd year Building Surveying student at Reading University. I applied for the surveying pathway as I have an interest and wanted to further widen my knowledge in this area.

    On placement I did a variety of different things. They included:

    • Using databases to find past sold prices for a number of properties so that comparables could be made to establish a value on some properties as part of a report.
    • Working in Development where they were working on the Advanced Manufacturing Hub Scheme in Birmingham. I researched premises and drew up a schedule with the various options for the client.
    • Going out for lunch with fee earners and some after work drinks with the team. These were both really enjoyable events and it was really good to talk to Savills employees in other areas of the business, learn about the nature of their work and their background.
    • Going on a site visit to a country house in order to be able to do a valuation report on behalf of a bank that needed this to allow the owners to take out an equity release plan on the property.

    The support and guidance throughout the week was excellent and I gained a strong understanding of Savills flat management structure.

    I found Savills to be a very professional company, with a friendly atmosphere. My impression of the property industry is that it is a sociable, varied and exciting profession.

    My advice to anyone thinking of applying for the scheme is that you will find it a very useful and worthwhile week.

    Name: Hannah Marshall

    University & Course: Cardiff University, BSc in City and Regional Planning

    Pathway: Town Planning

    Team: Planning, Bristol

    Personal Profile:

    As a first year student studying for a BSc in City and Regional Planning, I found my week on the Insight Programme in the Planning team at Savills extremely beneficial. In addition, to shadowing a Savills graduate, I was given the opportunity to undertake tasks including collating information from a number of Core Strategy documents and looking at proposed plans for a specific development, assessing how this complied with local planning policies. Such tasks helped to put my theoretical knowledge into practice.

    I sensed that there was an excellent spirit within the office and team were very welcoming. My mentor provided brilliant guidance and support to enable me to carry out the work assigned to me. I appreciated the Directors taking time out to join the Insight students and their mentors at a lunch provided by Savills, giving a valuable opportunity to find out more about the company and the property industry in an informal setting.

    I gained a very positive impression of Savills as a company. The Planning team's enthusiasm and professionalism as well as the wider culture of encouraging personal development was impressive. There was an emphasis on the importance of having effective people skills to build connections within the industry, using initiative to achieve goals and being confident in discussions.

    I would certainly recommend any student on a planning course to consider applying for the Insight programme. It gives you a taste of life in a successful and respected private practice; and the fact that you have been selected for the programme from a number of applicants is bound to enhance your CV and improve prospects for employment in the future.

    Name: Peter Hanton

    University & Course: Durham University, BA History

    Pathway: Surveying (Commercial, Development and Residential)

    Team: Retail Property Management, London

    Personal Profile:

    The Insight Programme provided an opportunity to find out more about the property industry, get some hands-on experience and a feel for what Savills is really like.

    The structure of the week struck a perfect balance between time spent learning about and working with my team, departmental overviews with the other Insight students and networking opportunities with a whole range of Savills surveyors. This careful organisation of the programme meant that I was able to get in-depth and valuable exposure to the firm and the property world.

    Having previously done work experience and internships in law and banking, I enjoyed the opportunity to do a mixture of technical work (going back to old leases to find out key information and looking at service charge numerical breakdowns) and the more people-orientated work (making telephone calls to tenants and meeting with shopping centre managers).

    My mentor was very helpful and provided guidance throughout the programme. As well as clearly being on track to becoming a first-rate surveyor, he was also very friendly and it was good fun to spend time with him. The other graduates and fee-earners I met at the networking events also proved to be approachable, passionate about their work and very easy to get along with. This left me with the overall impression of Savills as a stimulating and sociable firm that undertakes some of the most interesting and profitable work in the industry.

    I have really enjoyed my week at Savills, which will hopefully provide a springboard to more experience and perhaps even a job in the property world.