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For a number of years there has been great concern regarding the ageing of the profession and the declining numbers of entrants with the following areas identified as barriers/challenges for new entrants into the valuation profession:

  • The difficulty in finding Mentors for valuation graduates, and
  • The difficulty in obtaining valuation experience

As a result, in 2018 the Executives of the SAIV Kwa-Zulu Natal Branch made of up 6 (six) Professional Valuers embarked on the introduction of a Mentorship programme. They obtained permission from the South African Council for the Property Valuers Profession (SACPVP) to act collectively as Mentors to a number of students with the goal of providing accredited experience to the valuation students. They successfully launched the Mentorship programme with 38 individuals.

It was due to this success that the programme was subsequently rolled out across the country in 3 of the remaining 4 Branches of SAIV to the benefit of some 83 students; this after having received over 100 applications of individuals who without this opportunity would’ve been lost to other professions.

Due to the large demand for the programme following the initial intake, SAIV Branch Executives have had to heed the call and agree to a second intake even amongst the pressures faced in their respective jobs, whilst providing mentorship on a voluntary basis. Once enrolment was open for the second intake, over 70 applications were received within the 3 weeks – once again showing the urgent need for mentorship.

Regular workshops are held with a focus on theoretical and practical content. Mentees produce reports that are assessed and signed off by the mentors once a required standard of proficiency has been met. The mentees self fund any costs which they incur such as; transportation costs to attend workshops, transportation costs to go to the various sites which have been identified for their assignments, data for accessing the internet in order to complete assignments and fees are payable to SACPVP upon registration.

The programme will not only have a career changing benefit for the mentees, but it will significantly improve their skills and knowledge, who will now have proven experience that will enable them to write the SACPVP Board Exam to qualify as professionals. Over and above that, the valuation industry and its clients will benefit from the input of an enlarged, trained body of professionals. The success of this programme is largely due to the selfless people who are acting as mentors that are committed to seeing advancement in the valuation profession and the commitment of the mentees who desire a career in property valuation. A concerted effort needs to be made by all industry bodies to ensure that mentees are retained in the profession by having sufficient employment for them.