RIBA Future Trends February 2016
The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) Future Trends workload index dipped in February, falling from +24 in January to +16.
London-based practices were again cautious about future workloads (balance figure +10), along with those in the South (+3). Practices in the North of England remained the most optimistic (increasing to +38), with Wales and the West also positive (+22).
Practices of all sizes reported a dip in workload expectations but medium-sized practices (11–50 staff) saw the most dramatic decline in the workload index (falling from +50 in January to +17 in February).
The private housing sector forecast increased slightly to +23. Forecasts for both the public sector and community sector stood in negative territory; the commercial sector outlook fell slightly but remained positive.
The RIBA Future Trends staffing index increased marginally to +9 in February (up from +8 in January); 7% of practices expect to employ fewer staff in three months’ time.
Medium-sized practices were again the most confident about retaining or increasing existing staff levels (balance figure +31), followed by large (+14) and small practices (+6). 5% of practices reported staff redundancies as a result of the EU referendum outcome.
RIBA Executive Director Members, Adrian Dobson, said:
“Despite several years of growth in demand for architectural services, competition is intense with many practices still experiencing low fee levels. However, with a majority of practices expecting to sustain and grow staffing levels over the next quarter, the employment market for salaried architects remains healthy.”
Notes to editors:
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- Completed by a mix of small, medium and large firms based on a geographically representative sample, the RIBA Future Trends Survey was launched in January 2009 to monitor business and employment trends affecting the architects’ profession.
- The Future Trends survey is carried out by the RIBA in partnership with the Fees Bureau. Results of the survey, including a full graphical analysis, are published each month
- The definition for the workload balance figure is the difference between those expecting more work and those expecting less. A negative figure means more respondents expect less work than those expecting more work. This figure is used to represent the RIBA Future Trends workload index, which for February 2017 was +16.
- The definition for the staffing balance figure is the difference between those expecting to employ more permanent staff in the next three months and those expecting to employ fewer. A negative figure means more respondents expect to employ fewer permanent staff. This figure is used to represent the RIBA Future Trends staffing index, which for February 2017 was +9.
- To participate in the RIBA Future Trends Survey, please contact the RIBA Practice Department on 020 7307 3749 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. The survey takes approximately five minutes to complete each month, and all returns are independently processed in strict confidence.
- The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) is a global professional membership body that serves its members and society in order to deliver better buildings and places, stronger communities and a sustainable environment. www.architecture.com
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