How is the practice of Architecture affected by fees? Part 2

Architects’ Design Team Compensation

The design team is not just the Architect. It can include many different designers and specialists. They all get compensated similar to the Architect with similar fee structure considerations. From civil, structural, heating/ air conditioning/ plumbing/ electrical engineers; landscape architects, acoustical, low voltage, design specialist consultants, all need to have an agreement defining their roles in relation to the greater project. Each consultant needs to be given all information as it is being designed. Each consultant needs their efforts managed, checked, and distributed. This is a very involved process with a tremendous amount of effort required to coordinate the entire project. Who is doing this? It is usually the architect. All the requirements for professionalism also apply to each consultant. Do you want someone who plans out the project or just slams it out? Each project requires different consultants. The level of care needed helps determine who is on the team. The architect can assist with that effort. Again, the experience, staffing, IT support, filing systems, insurance, location, hours worked, all affect the team and the results the client can expect.

Design Team Compensation

The cost of the design fees is only a portion, maybe 15-20%, of the construction cost, in most cases. The greater the effort the closer the project will conform to the clients’ goals. If it is well designed, you may enjoy your new spaces more than you anticipated. Users group are happier. Employees stay at their current job. Space plans can increase productivity. You can stay ahead of your competition. You feel great about the sustainable efforts going toward community and utility usage goals. You can just be proud to show off what you have commissioned. Maybe the design team came up with a solution that costs less than others with similar requirements. Years later, the flexibility of the design still works without needing major changes to the original design. The utility and maintenance costs turned out lower than you anticipated saving cash flow while reducing your overhead. Each of these issues are real. Your design team can really make a difference on all these issues and many more. Each project is a custom design and needs the right office, project, staffing, consultants, and client to pull off an exceptional project. At JHAI that is our goal. Give us the opportunity to lead your design team.