Architects' overseas work booming, says RIBA survey – Architects Journal

The institute’s annual Business Benchmarking survey of trends in the profession reports that the value of work abroad has increased by 3 per cent, from £498 million to £513 million. 

The survey also reveals that Asia has overtaken the Middle East as the most profitable source of work for UK-based architects. It said Asian work was worth £140 million in 2018 against £104 million for Middle East work.

Meanwhile, EU work has become the second largest source of international work with its value increasing from £108 million to £118 million.

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The report also revealed that salaries have increased ahead of inflation, which the RIBA suggested meant practices were working hard to retain their staff. The institute’s findings contradict those recently reported by 9BCareers, which showed that pay across the board have risen by only 0.6 per cent over the last year and was near identical to that paid 10 years ago at the depths of the recession.

Drawn from data provided by RIBA’s Chartered Practices, the benchmarking study has been conducted since 2012 to provide insight into trends over time.

Since the first survey, revenue has doubled among chartered practices to £3.2 billion (from £1.6 billion).

RIBA chief executive Alan Vallance said: ‘Growing demand from Asia and the EU shows the importance of both maintaining our current relationship with the EU and value placed on British experience in new markets, and underlines the importance of a good Brexit outcome.

‘The government must deliver a deal that works for the architecture sector and ensures we are able to access vital services, attract and retain talented professionals and maintain our renowned position as a globally successful hub for architectural excellence.’

He added: ‘The total revenue of our architecture firms has doubled since 2012 and, since then, growth in revenue has continued to outpace employment growth, indicating an ongoing increase in productivity.

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