Seven Job Roles that Professional Architects can Consider

Meta-description: Architecture has many job avenues. Take a look at our seven picks for the best architect jobs.

Maybe you’re a college graduate who recently got his/her NCARB license. Or, you’re a veteran with a few years in your belt. Either way, you may be giving serious consideration to your future as an architect. Which job should you take up? What roles are the most lucrative? Which ones will bring you the most unique and challenging opportunities?

The best thing about architecture is that you do have numerous avenues within the field if you want to shift from your current line of work. To help you make a decision, we have made a list of the top seven jobs that any architect – new or experienced – will love to do. These roles allow you to explore the full range of your skills as architects, and they also bring you good money. So, take a look:

1. BIM manager

A Building Information Modeling (BIM) manager is an architect who specializes in developing 3D models of buildings and other properties. This role involves using CAD/CAM technology, 3D printing, and sometimes, AI to build multi-dimensional blueprints of constructions.

The BIM manager’s job is to replicate the exact elements of real construction in the 3D model. This model is used to understand the areas of concern that builders may face during the actual construction.

2. Landscape architect

If you love the outdoors, then you may enjoy the job of a landscape architect. These architects plan, design, and develop public spaces like parks, playgrounds, college/school campuses, and public buildings. They also design the roads, amenities, and landscaping that comes with these properties.

3. Specification writer

Specification writers provide a detailed 1000+ pages explanation about how the new build should be. They cover topics like foundation design, materials to be used, the number of resources needed, methods of building & installation, quality criteria, safety test criteria, and so on. These specs will be used by the builder to then construct the project.

This is a great role for both new graduates who want to learn the trade and for retired architects who don’t want to do a part-time job.

4. Sustainability consultant

Climate change and overabundance on natural resources have created massive problems for humanity. A single, wrongly designed building can wreak havoc on the already precariously-positioned planet. This is where sustainability architects are of immense value.

They work with clients to find eco-friendly alternatives to traditional construction practices. The objective is to reduce the building’s carbon footprint and still make it sturdy and safe to use for decades.

To become a sustainability consultant, you’ll need to be accredited in the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program started by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC)1.

5. Political architect

Study the history of the world, and you’ll see how deeply architecture is connected to power and politics. A nascent branch of architecture explores this very dynamic.

Political architecture is the field of designing places of power and political centers, keeping in mind how the architecture itself impacts political dialogue and decision-making. Architects specializing in this field need to be well-versed in various domains like geopolitics, world culture, art, psychology, and so on. Their job is to design buildings that can contribute to the development of positive politics in a country/city/town.

6. Technical architect

How a building is built determines how long it will stand and how much of a blessing or a hindrance it will be to the owners and occupants. One person who is instrumental in a building’s ability to be a solid construction is the technical architect.

These are architects who specialize in the components necessary to build specific parts of the building. They provide detailed floor plans, instructions on how to assemble the technology the right way, and tips on how to tackle technical machine or building-related problems.

7. Project manager

One of the most prestigious roles in architecture is that of a project manager.

Project managers are essentially the captains of the ship. Their job involves guiding the entire construction project to successful completion while ensuring minimal resource wastage. Project managers are HR managers, lawyers, inventory specialists, and documentation experts rolled-into-one.

They not only plan and implement the project but also mobilize resources, motivate staff, and ensure that the entire team is free from lawsuits and on-site accidents.

8. Getting ready for your dream job

Okay, so now that you know more about the best architect jobs you’re eligible for, it’s time to follow through and apply for your dream role. But before you do, remember to check on your licenses and make sure you’re certified to practice in the State you want to work in.

Also, remember to purchase architects professional liability insurance (or renew it, if you already have one) and protect yourself from possible negligence lawsuits from clients and third-parties. Check this website for more information.

1 Usgbc.org. (2019). Education | USGBC. [online] Available at: https://new.usgbc.org/education [Accessed 31 Oct. 2019].

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