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Career progression: from Property Manager to Asset Manager

Tips on how to progress your career in Property Management

The move from property management to asset management is often seen as a natural one and something many professionals are looking to action. It can, however, be harder than often expected as there is a big difference between the responsibilities and character traits needed for the two positions. Here are a few key things to take into account when considering such a move:

  • Property management roles are typically centred around overseeing and ensuring certain tasks are performed, and that the asset is up and running as it should be- an operational slant, if you like.
  • Asset management requires strategic thought and implementation in order to actively enhance the cash flow and value of the assets.
  • Employers need to see that the potential employee has demonstrated the ability to strategically think in an asset management context and apply this in a way that enhances the asset. Even if the candidate is in a core property management role, they will usually need to show that they have had some exposure to the asset management side.
  • Asset managers will usually need to be MRICS qualified, which is not always the case for property managers and can be a problem for those unqualified individuals trying to move across.
  • Asset managers are increasingly required to have a higher level of numerical ability. For example, we are seeing a rising demand for asset managers who know their way around a cash flow and can model to a reasonable level.
  • Asset managers will typically have a more commercial outlook than those coming from other areas of the profession, including property management.

The move essentially requires a switch from an operational viewpoint to a more strategic and value-adding perspective. Property managers often make the move; indeed, many asset managers started their careers as property managers. Whether or not the move is realistic depends on the individual in question and if they are more at home running an asset in a day to day capacity or sweating it to add value.

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