Professional Institutions and Organisations to be Aware of in the Construction Sector

Posted by Steve Thomas , Construction Recruitment Director, UK & Canada on Tuesday, August 16, 2022

This article will look at four major institutes and organisations in the construction industry and will provide a summary of how these professional bodies operate and what they offer to construction professionals.

The professional associations to be discussed are:

  • Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS)
  • The Institute of Clerks of Works and Construction Inspectorate of GB Inc (ICWCI)
  • Society of Construction Law (SCL)
  • The Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB).

These four construction sector organisations provide for four different sectors of the construction industry, each bringing their own specialised knowledge and professionalism to their respective sectors. The article will take each association in turn, starting with:

 Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS)

The RICS is a global professional body and offers many benefits to its members. According to RICS:

“If you are already chartered qualified or looking to be – you don’t just hold an additional qualification. You possess a specialisation that gives you a distinct advantage over others.”

 Having a distinct advantage over other construction professionals is obviously a benefit everyone desires. Construction sector organisations with ‘Royal Charter’ within their name are always going to give members prestige. Indeed, a fact on the RICS website makes this kudos obvious:

 “Members in the UK earn on average £16,000 more each year than non-members.”

Not only is earning potential increased, but as RICS is global, worldwide networking is facilitated, increasing the potential to connect with peers in the construction sectors no matter which corner of the earth they reside in.

Training and skill enhancement are provided by RICS and membership can supply the right training and extra qualifications tailored to your own career path. According to Marek Pohl:

 "Being a member of RICS is seen by both international and domestic clients as a sign of trust and transparency. This is fundamental to what I do as a valuer."

Trust plays a huge part in the construction industry sectors and becoming a member of construction sector organisations such as RICS provide that all-important credential, allowing trainees to mid-career professionals the chance to move along the construction career path. 

The Institute of Clerks of Works and Construction Inspectorate of GB Inc. (ICWCI)

The ICWCI offer different membership grades from student to fellow, life member to jubilee member, thereby encompassing all skill ranges. The UK based ICWCI have their own directory, so any member can be found and employed by those seeking a Clerk of Works. Conversely, members can look on the ICWCI job site for suitable roles, making the ICWCI employment service a two-way street.

Again, education is at the forefront for this construction sectors organisation. From Continuing Professional Development (CPD) through various means, to more formal qualifications through educational institutions.

Networking is of course crucial to the construction professional and their career in construction. The ICWCI points out:

One of the benefits of ICWCI membership is networking with professionals in the same field of work. With the role of our members being so isolated, having the opportunity to discuss and debate issues is of great importance.”     

With meeting places in Ireland, Hong Kong and Gibraltar, the ICWCI has a social calendar not to be missed by any serious Clerk of Works construction professional.

The Society of Construction Law (SCL)

This addition to our list of construction sector organisations is also UK based. Networking with the SCL  is a priority, with various events including important industry talks are a regular social feature.

Access to the construction law library is a great membership perk, with access to an extensive library not open to the general public. And with access to industry papers, webinars, podcasts and talks and reports, the SCL provides tremendous amounts of information and knowledge not available to non-members.

Grants are a great feature at SCL and offer fantastic opportunities for study to further a career in construction. 

Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB)

Another royal chartered institute amongst the construction sector organisations is the CIOB, one of the construction sectors most supportive professional bodies.

“We’re all united in a passion for our industry, but we’re also passionate about the people…through CIOB Assist we offer support on everything from financial concerns to mental health issues and training help.”

Again with membership grades and plenty of opportunities for CPD and great qualifications, CIOB offer something for everyone no matter how far down the construction career path you are.


Steve Thomas
Steve Thomas
Construction Recruitment Director, UK & Canada
Maxim Recruitment

Steve is responsible for Maxim Recruitment in the UK. He is based in the Maxim head office in Leicester, Leicestershire and regularly travels to meet employers, job seekers and to attend construction industry networking events all over the UK. With over 20 years' experience in construction and property recruitment he works with a number of repeat clients and engages in search and headhunting assignments for a range of premium UK and international clients.