The surveying profession in the UK construction industry continues to be blighted by a skills shortage, and this continues to constrict growth. Therefore, it is suggested that this should make it easier for women and other underrepresented groups to be employed in the
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The surveying profession in the UK construction industry continues to be blighted by a skills shortage, and this continues to constrict growth. Therefore, it is suggested that this should make it easier for women and other underrepresented groups to be employed in the construction industry. While this is the case, barriers to entry have been well researched. This study aimed to identify what methods have been previously successful at increasing female engagement within the surveying profession in the UK. This study followed a mixed-method, complementary approach, combining quantitative and qualitative questions in an online questionnaire, which was distributed via social media (LinkedIn) and the researchers’ contacts, and achieved 44 responses over a period of six weeks. The target population was female UK residents employed in surveying roles. Quantitative data on both awareness and opinion of the methods used during previous initiatives to engage women with surveying underwent reliability analysis, descriptive statistical analysis, and a Spearman’s rank order correlation to assess the relationship between time in industry and opinion on the efficacy of the methods used in each initiative; however, no statistically significant relationship was found. To better understand the opinions of women already in the industry, the qualitative data underwent thematic analysis via inductive coding, the results of which then underwent descriptive statistical analysis. The study found a broad lack of awareness of previous initiatives, with most respondents having little or no awareness of the five initiatives examined. However, evidence suggested there was general support for the methods used in those initiatives, such as intervention at school age, increasing the visibility of women in surveying roles, and changes to workplace culture. There was no statistically significant link between time in industry and opinion on the efficacy of each initiative. Key themes included concerns regarding the implementation of current initiatives, and enthusiasm for intervention at school age as the best method to engage more women with the surveying profession. The findings have implications for both practice and future research. First, professional institutions, such as the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, should be aware of the limitations of the initiatives they put in place to encourage women into their profession. Second, the results have an impact on other professions. However, a cross-comparative study that examines initiatives by other professional institutions would be useful.