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Freelance architecture and design consultants the wave of the future?

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Freelance architecture and design consultants the wave of the future?

| architects, architecture jobs, jobs, recession | February 06, 2013

In the “old days,” a firm might turn down a project because it didn’t have the necessary staff to handle it properly. Today, firms can maintain a lean staff in lean times and hire freelance consultants when business picks up. In the process they can hire people with the particular skills needed for particular jobs.

Architecture is not the only profession turning more and more to freelance employment. One study finds the number of temporary hires almost doubled in a recent four-year period – over 10 percent of them skilled technicians or professionals.

In fact, a growing number of young architects see freelancing as a fast-track means to getting ahead.

Instead of working on just one type of project or one aspect of design, freelancers acquire varied experience. The goal is to land permanent positions at a higher level more quickly than by remaining on one job for a given period of time.

Assuming that architectural firms will become accustomed to the freelance concept, this type of employment will grow as the demand for new projects returns to pre-recession levels.

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About the author

After working at various design practices on a full-time and freelance basis, and starting his own design firm, David McFadden saw that there was a gap to be filled in the industry. In 1984, he created an expansive hub for architects and hiring firms to sync up, complete projects, and mutually benefit. That hub was Consulting For Architects Inc., which enabled architects to find meaningful design work, while freeing hiring firms from tedious hiring-firing cycles. This departure from the traditional, more rigid style of employer-employee relations was just what the industry needed - flexibility and adaption to modern work circumstances. David has successfully advised his clients through the trials and tribulations of four recessions – the early 80’s, the early 90’s, the early 2000’s, and the Great Recession of 2007.

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