Nick Hoffman
Mace People

Nick Hoffman

Contracts Manager

Construction, UK

Motivated by passion, ambition and inclusion, Nick is working to build a better world through sustainably delivered fitout and retrofit projects and by helping to develop the next generation of construction leaders. From a graduate manager to a director of business operations, Nick’s career has seen him drive the reshaping of fitout and retrofit at Mace while helping colleagues hone their skillsets and advance their careers.

How did you get into what you do?

I’ve always been excited by property development and striking buildings, so I chose to study real estate at university. It gave me a good, broad understanding of the industry, but my first role in fitout showed me how satisfying it is to take something old and give it new life. The value you can add is just so tangible. It was a great first step in my career, but I began to think about the structured development a graduate scheme could offer me. In 2008, I joined Mace’s graduate scheme as a fitout construction manager and I haven’t looked back since.

What do you enjoy most about your current role at Mace?

Every day is different since fitout is so vast and varied. Because clients come to us with such a wide range of needs from their projects, there’s always something new to get your teeth into. I get to work with really great people in my team, across our supply chain, and within our client organisations. We share similar values and have a common purpose – delivering over and above becomes easier when you are working towards the same goals.

It’s also important to me to play a part in making a difference toward a better world and Mace really believes in changing the construction industry’s approaches to sustainability, culture and diversity – it’s not just lip service. At Mace, we’re led by purpose and determined to keep improving as a business.

How do you redefine the boundaries of ambition?

Within our core fitout business, we’ve definitely pushed the boundaries when it comes to scale and we’re now able to service the largest projects in London. Five years ago, we saw the opportunity to capitalise on an emerging trend within the market: we predicted that developers and landlords would move away from the traditional approach of demolishing and re-building and instead opt to retrofit to refresh their spaces. I could sense that commercial building owners were going to want spaces that prioritised operational efficiency and aligned with government policies coming down the line. The shift to hybrid working only reinforced this feeling, as employers emphasised creating inviting spaces that their employees want to spend time in.

To get ahead of this, we brought in people with the right expertise in retrofit, who could deliver a new type of offering that focused on transforming workspaces to the highest standards, not just in terms of quality but sustainability too. Sustainability is a key driver for demand for retrofit and it has also been key to how we’ve developed our offering. One of the benefits of having the capability to run multiple projects concurrently is that we can adopt circular economy principles, repurposing materials within or across sites whenever the opportunity is there. We can also introduce sustainable features into buildings that weren’t previously there, like capital plants, energy efficient lifts and sustainable cooling systems, which all help clients achieve their own sustainability targets.

We’ve bet big on retrofit because of its capacity to contribute to a more sustainable world. It’s been exciting and rewarding to have had the opportunity to take a lead role in building out this practice within Mace.

Why Mace?

Mace attracted me because of the opportunity to be involved in the highest profile projects in London, as well as its reputation for employing the best people. But I’ve stayed because it’s the type of place where you can write your own story. Mace Group is unique; it’s made up of different business units that serve a wide range of sectors. We’ve also got a career framework in place designed to make current employees aware of the opportunities available within the business and the experience they need to facilitate career progression. These factors combined mean that your career is in your hands at Mace. You can build relationships and skills in the areas that interest you and use them to leverage your next steps.

What has been your proudest achievement at Mace so far?

I’m thankful to be able to say that it’s difficult to decide! I’m extremely proud of my team, which I was given the chance to build from the ground up. It’s a group of strong individuals, each with expertise in their respective fields and they’re a joy to work with. I also feel pride when I can help junior team members progress in their career and go on to senior roles in the business.

Outside of delivering fitout builds for your clients, what else are you involved in at Mace?

I sit on Mace’s Graduate Board. One of the things we’re responsible for is running Mace’s annual Global Graduate Project, which gives second year graduates the opportunity to work in teams to fulfil a mock project brief. I view it as extremely important because it gives them the opportunity to learn about the entire business and gain real experience in delivering project work. For the past six years, I’ve helped to set the brief, review proposals, and provide feedback on the work our graduates put together. It’s been amazing to watch them develop and see what they go on to achieve within the business.

I also take advantage of the opportunities Mace offers to volunteer and give back to communities across the world. I’ve volunteered my fitout expertise to a handful of pro-bono clients, including Coram’s Fields and Kids disability charities. It feels good to provide organisations like these ones with facilities that support their vital work.

If you hadn’t gone into this line of work what do you think you might be doing?

Outside of work, my number one passion is food – both cooking it and eating it! I reckon I would have been happy owning a restaurant or doing something that allowed me to try lots of different foods from around the world. I’m glad though that I’ve had the chance to travel to some great places and see other cultures through their food.

Nick Hoffman

“I get to work with really great people in my team, across our supply chain, and within our client organisations. We share similar values and have a common purpose – delivering over and above becomes easier when you are working towards the same goals”