Two candidates were awarded a commendation for their APC submission in 2017. Read their top tips:
Emma’s day-to-day work includes writing planning appraisals; preparing, submitting and negotiating planning applications and appeals; preparing employment land studies; and, advising clients on planning obligations. She applied for Chartered membership under the Licentiate Assessment of Professional Competence (L-APC).
- Studied BSc City and Regional Planning at Cardiff University.
- Went on to study MSc Spatial Planning at UCL.
- 12-month placement as part of undergraduate degree with the Borough Planning team at Transport for London.
- In 2014 joined Jones Lang LaSalle Incorporated Development and Heritage team in London.
Emma’s top tips:
- Get the right experience – make sure that you have the right type and breadth of experience before you submit your application. I found it helpful to have regular meetings with my line manager so that I could ask for additional responsibility and to get involved in a range of projects.
- Start drafting your log book early – begin drafting your log book early to ensure that you record your experience in as much detail as possible; it will make drafting the Personal Experience Statement (PES) and Professional Competence Statement (PCS) much easier.
- Read the guidance carefully – make sure you read all the guidance carefully and keep cross-referencing the competencies when you write your logbook.
- Make the most of your mentor – utilise their experience to finesse your submission. Throughout the process, I also spoke to others who had recently been through the APC process to gain a better understanding of the competencies and the Professional Development Plan (PDP.)
Charlie developed his competency as a planner through working on a diverse range of mixed-use schemes including, residential, student accommodation, retail and industrial projects across England, and parts of Wales. He applied for Chartered membership under the Licentiate Assessment of Professional Competence (L-APC).
- Graduated from University of Sheffield in 2015.
- Studied the MPlan in Urban Studies and Planning.
- Studied semester abroad at Aalborg Universitet, Denmark as a student on MSc Urban Planning and Management.
- Undertook work experience at Northampton Borough Council
- Began planning career at Building Design Partnerships as a Graduate Planner
- Joined Iceni Projects in June 2016 as an Assistant Planner within the Urban Mixed Use team
Charlie’s top tips
- Don't leave your Professional Development Plan (PDP) to the last minute – your PDP should be the conclusion to your submission and is an on-going reflection on how as a planner you are to improve. Agree your actions with your line manager, as they should be achievable and relevant to your progression.
- Give yourself plenty of time – working full time and preparing your submission can be stressful. Agree a date of completion for your first draft with your mentor, to ensure it is finalised in time and the submission is not rushed.
- Utilise your logbook – you can save a surprising amount of room in your Practical Experience Statement (PES) and Professional Competence Statement (PCS) by including supporting text related to project experience in your logbook. This afforded me extra words in my PCS to reflect on my competencies in more detail.
Reflect constantly – try to avoid being too descriptive in your PCS and reflect on your experiences throughout your submission. This will help to demonstrate your wider thinking and analysis of the process and outcome.