Autumn is in full swing and that means many students around the country have returned to their desks at architecture school. For the majority, this time is a mixture of excitement and enthusiasm, but for others, it’s a mixture of anxiety and sleepless nights. Studying architecture is not an easy option, that’s for sure. Having said that, pursuing an architectural education, can be fulfilling, character building, and can set you on a path to a rewarding career.
Here are tips to help you succeed and excel in your architecture studies:
1. Time management
By starting to organise the life according to a specific system, it is possible to achieve a whole new level of productivity.
You may use time-saving apps, like IFTTT and Pocket if you have to handle too many tasks in a single day. Plan your assignment carefully by breaking it down on small sections in order to reach the end goal. To keep track of all daily tasks and set priorities, you may use a simple app like Clear . Do not put things off and start working on your assignments as soon as possible.
Get some sleep! Continuous lack of sleep is a serious cause of stress that may even lead to mental health issues later in life as per this RIBA article .It should all be about a healthy work balance.
In some situations, you’ll need to say ‘no’ when you have tight deadline for an assignment. It is about learning what is important to you in order to get through your studies and do well.
2. Take care of yourself
Taking care of yourself is paramount to the success of your studies. Eat healthy food, Exercise regularly, Get enough sleep and Rest.
Taking care of all aspects of you will increase the likelihood that you achieve more. Being and feeling healthy will improve self-esteem and keep you confident. Your positive attitude will spread throughout your assignments and presentations demonstrating your enthusiasm for the subject.
3. Get some work experience
Internships, work experiences, work shadowing or anything that will help you to prepare for work and develop general business awareness. Start thinking ahead.
Try working at architectural practice, on construction site, engineering office and other places related to architecture or construction. It’s all useful, and should all go on your CV .
4. Learn to draw
Take your time to do lots of practice. It is a very useful skill and brainstorming tool that can help you develop ideas individually or as part of a team. Sketching helps you show a concept to a team or client, come up with potential solutions quickly, and help better understand a project yourself.
5. Learn how to speak well in public
With thorough preparation and practice, you can overcome your nervousness and preform exceptionally well. Being a good public speaker can enhance your reputation, boost your self-confidence, and open up countless opportunities.
To become a better speaker, use the following strategies – Plan appropriately, Practice, Engage with your audience, Pay attention to body language, Think positively, Cope with your nerves and Watch recordings of your speeches.
During your studies you will have a good opportunity to practice the presentation of your work to people. So, start planning your communication appropriately. Use tools like Rhetorical Triangle and The 7 Cs of Communication .
Networking is an essential part of advancing your career. You need to connect with others – whether by becoming member of an association or getting involved with local architectural events. It’s more likely you get help with some work experience or new job through who you know and at the same time meeting the array of new interesting people for you to learn from.
7. Embrace criticism
From time to time you may deal with your work being criticised. Try not to take it personally and not to overreact. Learn how to respond to your critics .
Learn from what people are saying and move on. Constructive criticism will allow you to improve and become a better architect.
8. Don’t give up
You knew it would not be easy. So, keep on going and do your best. You will eventually reach your goal.
‘Never give up on something that you can’t go a day without thinking about’. – Sir Winston Churchill
We are currently looking for an experienced administration / marketing assistant to join our friendly team, on a part time basis of 14 hours per week Thursday – Friday. To find out more about the role, please continue reading our candidate specification below.
OVERALL PURPOSE OF THE JOB
To provide all round administrative and marketing assistance to the Director and office.
- To co-ordinate an effective front line response to telephone calls to agreed service standards, passing on telephone calls to the appropriate person or taking messages;
- Carry out client invoicing and help with chasing up of invoices;
- Helping with company accounts – assisting our external Accountant with information;
- Administration of Internal/External Post system;
- Provide general office support and carry out general correspondence, filing and other administrative and office duties as required;
- To provide personal assistant duties to the Director including managing and maintaining the Director’s email account, diary management and ensuring correspondence is dealt with in a timely manner;
- Assist with the maintenance of computer files and databases and undertake data inputting as required;
- Keep Company’s WordPress website and social media accounts, mainly Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, up-to-date by posting project information, news, etc. on a regular basis as well as assisting in preparation of blog content;
- At the discretion of the Practice Manager, to prepare promotional literature on behalf of Richard Andrews Architects Ltd;
- To assist in the organisation of promotional events and meetings and as required;
-To occasionally attend networking events;
- Undertake any other duties as required commensurate with the post’s grading or general level of responsibility;
- Demonstrate informed commitment to equal opportunities, diversity and associated policies;
- To adhere to Health and Safety Legislation/relevant Policies and Procedures and to take reasonable care for the health and safety of yourself and other persons who may be adversely affected by your acts/omissions;
The above is not an exhaustive list of duties and you will be expected to perform different tasks as necessitated by your changing role within the organisation and the overall business objectives of the organisation.
A level standard or equivalent
Experience of working in an office environment
Experience of dealing with clients
High level of administrative ability
Good communicator, both written and oral
Good computer skills especially with Microsoft Office
Ability to work effectively with a wide range of people
Great attention to detail
Good at managing tasks and prioritising workload
Effective contributor to a team
A desire to show initiative
Ability to work with minimum supervision
Ability to stay calm under pressure
Previous Marketing experience
Experience of maintaining WordPress websites and other social media platforms
If you'd like to apply please send a CV and covering letter explaining why you think you're right for the role to email@example.com
We’ve blogged before about the many hats worn by an architect and spoken about how the role is much more varied than just drawing a few plans, so with that in mind we decided to record a ‘day in the life’ of Richard Andrews Architect’s Associate, Lewis, to help give a real understanding of what a typical day for an architectural professional looks like.
6.30am – The day starts early, I set a 5am alarm so that I can get to a 6.30am business networking event in Cardiff. The group is high energy, though I get a chance to talk to all the attendees and explain a little about the services we offer and the projects we’re currently working on, I then set follow up meetings with potential clients and business contacts over the next couple of weeks.
8am – Back at the office, I like to check through my inbox and respond to emails from the night before, plus double check my calendar and to –do list for the day ahead. The first job of the day is to explore a technical issue on an existing scheme – where we are converting an old surgery building into flats. The build is currently at stage 3 (contract and project overseeing of our design process) and I need to find a way to waterproof the floor between two buildings at different levels.
8.45 - The next task on my list is working on the detail specifications for a £1million pound plus meeting facility scheme. I read through the construction design installation and chase roofing contractors for further information.
9.15 - I check in with the rest of the technical team and sit with my colleague Seb to look over feasibility designs for a two storey house extension, satisfied the project is going to plan I then follow up with another of our architectural assistants Antonella who is working on value engineering a separate house extension project.
10.30 – I have a telephone meeting booked with our quantity surveyor to work on the final account for Cwmbran Village Surgery’s building works which totalled around £450k. We also discuss tender proposals regarding a second GP surgery project in Pontprennau, Cardiff. I will later relay our discussions back to the client so that they can make the most informed choice regarding the construction tender bids for their project.
11.45 – Time to grab a quick lunch at a cafe in Caerleon with practice director Richard, smoked salmon baguette, a slice of lemon cake and a chance to catch up!
12.30 - I start the afternoon by responding to some of the emails and telephone messages that have come in throughout the day, then I turn my attention to some drawing work using our 3D modelling software Revit. A few of my newer colleagues are also learning the software so I use this as an opportunity to help them improve their skills.
1.45 – 3D drawing completed, I finish costing and writing up a client fee proposal for a potential residential extension I had visited the previous day. The client had some great ideas for their home and having seen the space I have many thoughts on how we can improve their initial concept to further maximise the use of light and space and improve their quality of life.
2.10 - Email to the client sent, fingers crossed we get the commission. I check my to-do list, and start work on a pen and paper sketch for a 16 unit new house layout in the valleys, this is an enjoyable way to get some ideas down early in a project.
3.00 – Time for a Site visit for a local householder project in Newport regarding planning enforcement. The quality of works carried out by the appointed construction team is good and to our original design specification, I update our client and the rest of the team.
4.00 – I quickly pop back into the office to respond to some more emails emails and telephone messages before heading back out to a ‘snagging’ appointment for a new build house in Newport.
5.30pm - The meeting goes well, all parties are happy with only some minor items to rectify, so for me; it’s time to head home to rugby training this evening!
We hope you enjoyed reading this post and gained a better insight into what our team does on a daily basis. Feel free to contact us regarding your scheme – we'd love to help!
Fancy a career in architecture? Our fun infographic explains what it takes to become licensed with the Architects Registration Board, ARB.
For those of you who may have already started on their journey in architecture, we currently have an architectural assistant vacancy. Contact the office on 01633 744144 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information!
JOB TITLE: Architectural Technician
RESPONSIBLE TO: Director/Principle Architect
RESPONSIBLE FOR: Day-to-day Technical Aspects of projects such as; new build residentials but also prestigious developments such as The Groomes Event Centre, Guildford and Barry Community Water Activity Centre.
We have an exciting role for an architectural technician to join our busy practice based in Newport, South Wales. We are looking for a team player with a positive work ethic who will enjoy working closely with our in-house architect and other external contacts; providing architectural design services and solutions on projects. Candidates will be responsible for the production of all working technical drawings as well as the preparation of feasibility studies, sketch designs, 3D modelling specification and report writing.
• Collate and organise technical information;
• Investigate technical information and factors that affect developments, including user needs, site and building surveys and regulatory requirements;
• Monitor health and safety in design with H&S Coordinator;
• Prepare and present design proposals using computer-aided design and other design software, as well as traditional methods;
• Lead the detailed design process and coordinate detailed design information;
• Produce, analyse and advise on detailed specifications for suitable materials or processes to be used;
• Prepare specifications for construction work;
• Carry out design-stage risk assessments;
• Assemble/review tenders for construction work;
• Contribute to meetings and document preparation;
• Liaise between members of the design and construction team, as well as provide professional technical guidance to them;
• Adhere to Health and Safety Legislation/relevant Policies and Procedures and to take reasonable care for the health and safety of yourself and other persons who may be adversely affected by your acts/omissions;
• Represent the office of Richard Andrews Architects at networking events or tradeshows, if required;
• Demonstrate an aptitude to undertake Continuous Professional Development (CPD) as delivered by the office of Richard Andrews Architects.
• Degree qualified in Architectural Technology or equivalent;
• A minimum 2 years practical work experience on residential/ mixed use projects;
• Knowledge of UK building regulations and construction detailing;
• Highly Proficient in the use of AutoCAD and Revit;
• Knowledge of technical legislation including current building regulations;
• Ability to interpret technical drawings and designs;
• Maths skills for technical calculations;
• Excellent communication and organisational skills;
• Outstanding attention to details and design.
• Competitive salary dependent upon experience;
• Excellent holiday package;
• Mon-Fri 9am-5pm with an early Friday finish;
• Plus benefits.
About our Practice
Richard Andrews Architects is a thriving and creative design-led architectural practice providing services to commercial and domestic clients across the UK and of course, on our doorstep in Newport, South Wales. We are a Chartered Practice with the RIBA.
With a small and friendly team we work collaboratively together to ensure that the whole design process runs smoothly and efficiently for each client. Our excellent attention to detail delivers great results to the highest standard of every project that we design.
We are currently working on a diverse variety of projects, ranging from domestic extensions and new builds to the extensive redevelopments of Abergwuan Hotel, Fishguard and Cwmbran Village Surgery to name a few.
This role is a fantastic opportunity for the right individual to establish themselves within a flourishing and creative environment with a real scope to grow with the firm as the company expands.
Please send your CV to email@example.com with a covering letter briefly demonstrating suitability for the role.
We have an exciting opportunity for two new people to join our very friendly team! We are looking for an architectural technician plus (through Jobs Growth Wales,) an architectural assistant.
What will you be doing?
Our architectural technician will be working closely with our in-house architects, along with other external contacts; providing architectural design services and solutions on projects. The right candidate will be responsible for the production of all working technical drawings as well as the preparation of feasibility studies, sketch designs, 3D modelling specification and report writing.
Meanwhile our new architectural assistant will be busy assisting our principle architect in the design and delivery of 3D and technical drawings and (under supervision) will be delivering projects as well. This is a great opportunity for a recent graduate under the age of 24!
We ask that you send your CV to firstname.lastname@example.org for consideration. We look forward to hearing from you!