How to Hire an Architect

Does your growing business need an architect? Architects can help create designs based on client and customer feedback.

Here are some tips to help you find great architect candidates and make the right hire for your business.

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Architects searching for jobs on Indeed*

43,779   

Job seekers that clicked architect jobs

9,790

Resumes for job seekers with architect experience on Indeed

3,736

Architect jobs that received clicks

What is the cost of hiring?

  • Common salary in US: $106,469 yearly
  • Typical salaries range from $31,000$226,000 yearly
  • Find more information on Indeed Salary

*Indeed data (US) – April 2021

As of April 2021, architect jobs in the US are very competitive compared to other job markets, with an average of 12 job seekers per architect job.

Why hire an architect?

Bringing an architect onto your staff can affect both your existing team and your bottom line. However, a great architect hire can help your business:

• Create innovative designs for a variety of buildings and structures
• Improve upon or redesign existing structures
• Ensure your company’s building designs are in compliance with codes and regulations

Deciding between a full-time vs freelance architect

Determining the type of architect you need starts with choosing between a full-time employee and a freelance architect. If you expect consistent, ongoing work that can keep a full-time architect busy, hiring an employee gives you more control over the position. An in-house architect creates consistent results and is available on a regular basis. You can also put effort into mentoring your architect and providing continuing education opportunities that benefit your company.

Situations that might call for a freelance architect include special projects or temporarily busy times. Perhaps you’re taking on a massive project that calls for extra architects until the project is done. You might have a special project that requires expertise in a specific area. A freelance architect with that type of experience can help you with that project, but you might not need that experience in the future.

What are the ranks of architects?

Architecture firms employ a variety of ranks of architects to cover various needs. Architects often move up through the ranks as they gain experience or earn promotions based on merit. Some of the ranks of architects from lowest to highest include:

  • Architect interns: This position uses graduates with an architecture degree who don’t yet have an architecture license. They work under the supervision of a licensed architect at the firm.
  • Architects: This role is filled by a licensed architect. There are often different levels of architects within a firm. Architect 1 positions are for newly licensed architects or those with only a few years of experience. Responsibilities are usually limited to certain tasks within a project. The ranks can continue with more responsibilities as architects move up.
  • Project manager: Highly experienced architects might move into a project manager role, handling all aspects of managing an architecture project.
  • Department head: Some large firms have department head or senior manager positions for architects. This person is responsible for all architects and all department activity.
  • Partners: Architects can become firm partners, giving them some voting rights and possibly ownership in the firm.

Where to find architects

To find the right architect for your business, consider trying out a few different recruiting strategies:

  • Set up internships. Welcome architecture school graduates as interns. Your current architects can get help with projects, and you can test out potential architects to hire in the future.
  • Attend industry events. Go to architect conferences, trade shows and similar industry events. Network with other architects at the events to find prospects for your open positions.
  • Promote from within. If you’re looking for a more senior position in your company, consider if your current architects are ready for more responsibility. 
  • Network in similar industries. Talk to contacts in the industry that you work with regularly, such as contractors and interior designers, to find new architects.
  • Post your job online. Try posting your architect job on Indeed to find and attract quality architect candidates.

What are the ranks of architects?

Architecture firms employ a variety of ranks of architects to cover various needs. Architects often move up through the ranks as they gain experience or earn promotions based on merit. Some of the ranks of architects from lowest to highest include:

  • Architect interns: This position uses graduates with an architecture degree who don’t yet have an architecture license. They work under the supervision of a licensed architect at the firm.
  • Architects: This role is filled by a licensed architect. There are often different levels of architects within a firm. Architect 1 positions are for newly licensed architects or those with only a few years of experience. Responsibilities are usually limited to certain tasks within a project. The ranks can continue with more responsibilities as architects move up.
  • Project manager: Highly experienced architects might move into a project manager role, handling all aspects of managing an architecture project.
  • Department head: Some large firms have department head or senior manager positions for architects. This person is responsible for all architects and all department activity.
  • Partners: Architects can become firm partners, giving them some voting rights and possibly ownership in the firm.

Writing an architect job description

A thoughtful description is important to finding qualified architect candidates. An architect job description includes a compelling summary of the role, a detailed list of duties and responsibilities and the required and preferred skills for the position.

When writing your architect job description, consider including some or all of the following keywords to improve the visibility of your job posting. These are the most popular search terms leading to clicks on architect jobs, according to Indeed data:

  • Architect
  • Architecture
  • Naval architect
  • Architectural designer
  • Project architect
  • Mechanical engineer
  • Architectural
  • Remote architect
  • Software architect

Interviewing architect candidates

Strong candidates for architect positions will be confident answering questions regarding:

• Previous design experiences and models
• High-level problem-solving for unique building conditions
• Comprehension behind building and design regulations

Need help coming up with interview questions? See our list of architect interview questions for examples (with sample answers).

FAQs about how to hire an architect

How do I choose between two good architect candidates?

Review past projects from each architect, analyzing the work in detail to look for a slight edge in one of the candidates. Consider the future plans of each architect, including which candidate might be better suited for future leadership positions in your firm. Having a good cultural fit and strong communication skills is also important, so look at those aspects for each candidate as well.

How do I keep my architect happy?

Provide your architect with the latest tools, software and equipment to make the job easier. Allow your architects to have autonomy based on their level. A lower-level architect needs some supervision from a more experienced architect, but you can still allow autonomy on the assigned tasks to give them ownership. Promoting from within helps keep architects happy since they know they have growth potential.

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