The architecture industry evolves based on both the construction industry and the economic climate controlling the budgets allocated for construction. The domains and skills of those in architecture are numerous, thereby requiring a high level of versatility on their part. Moreover, an architect must possess design skills and talent, a keen business sense, a grasp of social trends and a mastery of the engineering that will form the basis of his or her work.
Construction activity in Quebec has been growing annually since 2010 and, according to Emploi Québec, will continue to do so through 2016. This makes the architecture industry a productive and ever evolving sector. Architecture as a profession depends heavily on the economic environment. While not comparable to the boom of the 1980s, the number of architects continues to grow.
Who’s hiring in architecture?
The architecture profession involves a certain number of players; hence, the employment possibilities in this sector are varied. Those seeking employment have more opportunities to practice their craft in a domain suited to them.
In Quebec, the source of jobs can be classified into several categories:
- Self-employed architects: Note that the majority of architects are self-employed (40%)
- Architectural firms;
- The public and para-public sector: ministries, municipalities, public service;
- The public sector;
- Teaching: 2.5% of architects are currently teaching. It is also possible to take a job in another sector while teaching students in parallel;
- Increased growth in the access to property also boosts the demand for architectural services.
The opportunities are varied, notably in heritage conservation and preservation. Experience and training in this area allows you to work as site manager, contractor and teacher, and to get promoted to management positions.
Among other professions we may find:
- CAD system operator
- Design architect
- Project manager
- Structural engineer
Challenges in architecture for the coming years
Although favourable, growth in the architectural professions remains dependent on the current economic climate. Major technological developments and new work tools, create demand in the architectural sector that is geared toward finding real experts. With both time and the societal and demographic evolutions, new needs emerge and require thought and work on projects that, until now, were unknown, such as green buildings, homes that are special in both design as well as practical use, residences for the elderly and sustainable construction. Thought will also have to be given to the renovation of buildings erected in an era when the tools and knowledge were not the same as today and that now require specific work to restore them.
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