The housebuilding industry offers hundreds of career options outside the on-site trade skills, with selling the properties playing a vital part of the cycle. We speak to Rory Cramer, who recently joined Marsh & Parsons as head of consultancy and strategy in the New Homes team, about what his typical day involves.
Taken on to help grow the New Homes business, Rory’s expertise lies in development consultancy which goes hand in hand with sales and marketing to ensure each of Marsh & Parsons schemes are relevant to the target market. Rory has a track record of advising clients in Greater London including FABRICA by A2Dominion, Mount Anvil, Paradigm Land and CIT where he has advised from inception to completion, from the purchase of sites through to the sale of the last apartments across their developments.
7.45am: Breakfast meeting in the West End with one of our new clients to discuss their latest project. It’s a design-led, 213-unit commercial-to-resi scheme in West London. My role to date has been development consultancy so I’ve been working on it since its inception, curating the design, marketing and branding team, advising on the interior architecture, specification, pricing and sales strategy.
9.00am: Arrive at the office. The New Homes division is constantly growing and evolving, so we aim to have daily updates and the state of the market as well as catch up on priorities for the week ahead. This is also an opportunity for me to sit down with the head of RDI (residential development and investment) and head of sales to discuss our new business pipeline as well as any other urgent matters.
11.00am: Attend a meeting with leading London architecture studio to discuss plans for a new heritage conversion in North London. I really enjoy these meetings and it is my responsibility to ensure that the design elevates the overall development and contributes to the end sales value of the scheme, maximising profitability for my client, the developer. The interior architects are also there and we discuss the importance of space planning and making sure the right specification is chosen for the apartments – today’s buyers are very design orientated and therefore look at all aspects including layout, fixtures and fittings and innovations. High ceilings and lots of natural light are two must-haves in new build design. I’m always advising our clients to invest in design as it not only reinforces the quality of the development but also demonstrates to the buyer the level of skill, thought and attention that has gone into creating their new home.
1.00pm: I work on finalising a strategy for a potential new client with a large scheme close to good transport links in South West London. Marsh & Parsons have one of the biggest branch networks across the capital – our open branch register, our office network and ability to generate strong leads will form an integral part of the pitch.
2.30pm: Call with one of our client’s marketing director’s to run through marketing collateral and brochure copy ahead of a development launch next month. I also review a selection of CGIs for the project and plans for the marketing suite which will be delivered at a later stage of the campaign. It’s crucial that our clients commission high-quality images of their new build schemes – whether it’s off-plan or during construction these pictures are key in making that first vital impression and making sure you stand out from other competitors.
3.30pm: We have a new business meeting tomorrow for a ground breaking scheme in North London and so I need to pull together the latest statistics on first-time buyers and Help to Buy to add to the presentation.
4.30pm: Finally time to catch up on emails and follow up on new business leads, which we worked on last week.
6.30pm: The team have a drinks catch up in the West End with a developer who has just secured planning on an impressive site in East London.
9.00pm: After having dinner with my wife at home this is a time when I like to catch up on the latest design news. I am passionate about good design and architecture and I can spend hours trawling the Internet finding new business, products and ideas that I want to introduce to my clients.