The RICS has frozen salaries for all staff at every level in the organisation for the next financial year as well as proposing 18 roles be made redundant.

It said in a statement today that like any business it was not immune from the impacts of the ‘current economic challenges’ and it had made the decision after watching the ‘market impacts unfold’.

Sean Tompkins, RICS chief operating officer, said: ‘The property and construction sector has been one of the hardest hit by the overall crisis in economic confidence and many chartered surveyors, and the firms that employ them, have had to face up to tough times while also balancing the need to be prepared for market improvement. Today we informed all staff that RICS itself needs to face up to some short term pain while also being very mindful of the need to be ready for an upturn in market conditions.’

He said that RICS revenues come mainly from professional subscription fee renewals and, ‘while these have remained relatively stable this year, commercial activities such as book sales, advertising, sponsorship and events have all witnessed a decline’.

There has also been a decline in dividends from equities, a reduction in cash deposit rates and income from RICS' investment holdings is also down. Although RICS membership continues to grow, mainly outside of the UK, Tompkins said the RICS is seeing a decline in the number of new trainees.

Jim Carter, chairman of the Management Board, said: 'RICS has already reduced its operating costs by around 5% over the last year through a more effective prioritisation of activities. This decision to make further cuts has not been taken lightly but, like any business, RICS has to reshape to live within its likely financial means while continuing its strategy to be the pre-eminent professional body promoting and protecting standards in the world of land, property and construction.'

Other actions announced by RICS today include measures to work smarter by making greater use of online tools to communicate and network and reduce the cost of face to face meetings. RICS also announced plans to restrict new staff recruitment during the coming financial year.