AN experienced independent company of chartered surveyors is going from strength to strength despite the worries of lockdown.
Atkinson Building Consultancy Ltd, which last year obtained the acclaimed Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors’ firm status, was set up by Adrian Atkinson and his son Jacob at the beginning of 2019, with Adrian’s assistant Amanda Halliday joining the company at the beginning of 2020.
And the business, which is able to advise and assist on everything from building and pre acquisition surveys to insurance and assessment claims to party wall advice and stock condition surveys, is growing so quickly that it is having to move to new, bigger offices where they are based at The Business Village in Wilthorpe.
“I’m Barnsley born and bred but have hardly ever worked in my home town,” said Adrian. “I’ve always commuted to the likes of Sheffield, Leeds or Manchester, but the opportunity to set up my own family business two years ago was too good to turn down.
“We have expanded from a starter office to the one that we are in now, but have outgrown it and are looking forward to moving into the new part of The Business Village once it is completed at the beginning of next year.
“We are taking steady, baby steps but I’m keen that as a business we keep pushing forwards and I’m optimistic about the future.” And this is likely to include the opportunity for somebody to join the team in the near future. Adrian added: “Pre-Covid we were discussing possibly recruiting someone else, but with what has happened in the world we had to reassess based on what are clients were doing. “In the near future I would like to think that we will be looking for another member of staff, possibly an apprentice.
“I’m keen to give something back and offer the right person the chance to get a foot on the ladder in the industry.”
Like many businesses, Adrian and Amanda were forced to work at home when the lockdown announcement came back in March, but they used this time away from the office productively.
Amanda added: “We used technology to keep in touch with clients when we were away from the office, which was a bit of a steep learning curve, but it will now allow us to be more selective about face to face in years to come.
“Lockdown naturally affected the volume of work that we had coming in, but we used the time to turn what could have been a negative into a positive and took stock.
“We’re both firm believers that everything happens for a reason. We were at a good point in the business to discuss what we were doing right and what we could do better, and we now have plans in place for the remainder of this year and the first quarter of next. Things are already picking up.”
Despite the relative success of working from home, both Adrian and Amanda were keen to return to their office at The Business Village as soon as they possibly could.
“The Business Village provides a really good environment in which to work, “ added Adrian.
“It’s a modern, nice environment to be in and ticks a lot of boxes for us. It nurtures people and allows them to find their own way.
“The staff are also really friendly and supportive, and it’s sometimes like having an extended family. There’s a comfortable feel to the building that makes it a good place to come to work.”
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The project is receiving up to £1,468.000 of funding from the European Regional Development Fund as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020 and is supported by Northern Powerhouse. The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (and in London the intermediate body Greater London Authority) is the Managing Authority for European Regional Development Fund. Established by the European Union, the European Regional Development Fund helps local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support innovation, businesses, create jobs and local community regenerations. For more information visit https://www.gov.uk/european-growth-funding.