Job description

Architects plan and design new buildings and suggest alterations to existing buildings, including houses, office buildings, factories, shopping centres and other structures. They can be commissioned to design anything from a single room to an entire complex of buildings.

Duties

    • Meet clients to discuss ideas, requirements and budget
    • Prepare drawings, specifications and construction documents
    • Advise clients on building procedures and costs
    • Supervise building projects from start to finish
    • Visit construction sites to ensure architectural plans are followed
    • Ensure building projects stay within building laws, safety regulations and budget
    • Write and present reports, applications, proposals and contracts
    • Collaborate with other professionals such as construction managers and quantity surveyors
    • Plan interior and exterior spaces and landscaping

Skills, qualities and knowledge

Analytical
Creative
Attention to detail
Organisational
Time management
Communication
Adaptive
Decision-making
Dependable
Persistence
Visualisation
Stress tolerance
Problem-solving
Mathematics
Persuasion
Cad software

Working hours and environment

Average working hours

45hweek

Typical schedule

Full Time

Long hours to meet deadlines

The work of architects is mostly office based, although you may be required to travel locally to visit construction sites or clients. Depending on the project you are working on, national or overseas travel may also be required.

The job can be stressful and the hours can be long, especially when leading up to deadlines. If working from home or for yourself, you can enjoy a more flexible work schedule.

Salary

Bottom 10%

$48k

Median

$79k

Top 10%

$140k

Annual salary estimates are based on percentile wage data collected through the Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) survey of US workers.

Qualifications and training

Education level

Undergraduate

DVM / VMD degree

Study time

5years

The first step to becoming an architect is obtaining a Bachelor of Architecture (BArch) degree, accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB), which takes about five years to complete. Many architects then proceed to a master’s degree, which typically takes an additional one to five years to complete, depending on previous training.

After obtaining your degree education, you are then required to complete a three-year paid internship and pass the Architect Registration Examination (ARE), which is developed and maintained by the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB).

Job outlook

Projected growth
The projected growth rate of employment in the US from 2016 to 2026, based on data collected through the BLS Employment Projections (EP) programme. The national average growth rate for all professions is 7%.

4%

No of new jobs
The number of jobs projected to become available in the US between 2016 and 2026, based on data collected through the BLS Employment Projections (EP) programme.

5.5k

Automation risk
The probability of computerisation, based on data published in ‘The Future of Employment’, a 2013 working paper by Carl Benedikt Frey and Michael Osborne.

1.8%

Career progression

As you progress in your career, you can become an architectural or engineering manager. You could even set up your own architecture firm.

Depending on the state in which you live, you may be required to complete some form of continuing education in order to keep your licence, including attending workshops or conferences.