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Future Trends Survey 2020

Future Trends monitors the employment and business trends affecting the architectural profession. These are the survey results from 2020.

Latest report: December 2020

In December, the RIBA Future Workload Index returned a balance score of +10: the highest balance score since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The commercial and public sectors returned positive balance figures for the first time since February. The private housing sector remained in positive territory.

However, this encouraging end of year picture needs to be treated with caution. Brexit and the third coronavirus lockdown are likely to take their toll on architects' workload predictions in the new year.

Graphs of main findings

To see the three graphs of the main findings, please click on the left and right in the bar below.

  • The ‘RIBA Future Workload Index’ graph shows the difference between those expecting more work in the next three months, and those expecting less.
  • The ‘RIBA Staffing Index’ graph shows the difference between those expecting to employ more permanent staff in the next three months and those expecting to employ fewer.
  • 'Sectors' graph shows the difference between those expecting more work in the next three months, and those expecting less, in each of the four main work sectors.

About RIBA Future Trends

Launched as part of a suite of economy focused initiatives, the survey is completed monthly by a sample representing a cross section of members. The survey is focused on areas in which members may face potential difficulties, including workload, staff levels and work in specific sectors.

Monthly results are independently analysed in order to identify the employment and business trends affecting the profession and to help to identify implications for the profession and inform further RIBA activities.

The Future Trends survey was devised by the RIBA Research and Development and Practice departments and launched in January 2009. It is run in collaboration with The Fees Bureau, which conducts the surveys and analyses the data.

All reports for 2020 are available at the bottom of this page.

You can also view the Future Trends 2019 survey results.

Available Resources

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