Architect roles explained
An architect’s role is more than designing buildings.
Architects are a fundamental part of the entire building process and have professional responsibilities they must comply with.
Here we explain an architect’s role, the skills, expertise and experience required of an architect and why you must choose the right one to build your dream home.
Skills of an architect
Did you know that architects need to know the most about software programs after computer engineers? They are as important as doctors and lawyers. Without them, society would lack well-built homes and buildings. They must use both sides of their brain as they require creative and analytical thinking skills.
To become qualified and be able to call yourself an architect can take between eight and 10 years. After a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree, architects gain several years of work experience before undertaking a national competency standard. This is a three-part process to show that person has the required skills and experience to register as an architect.
As architects, we need to use both sides of our brains: the creative side to design and the mathematical and analytical side to envisage scale and all aspects of construction. We also need people skills to effectively work with each client to deliver a well-executed project that delivers the client’s vision.
The planning part of a construction process requires meticulous attention to detail. Feasibility studies must take place on-site to determine any environmental or heritage restrictions, the build’s orientation and any outdoor design considerations.
During the planning phase, we will also consider any zoning requirements and potential risks associated with your build. As we work closely with the North Shore and Northern Beaches Councils, we know the regulations and restrictions of the area, so during the planning phase, we will arrange to meet with the council pre the DA (development application) submission to address any concerns that may arise.
In this part of an architect’s role, we marry our technical knowledge with our design capabilities. Our job in this phase is to interpret your vision and, using our skills, create a space that considers material, environment, design goals and sustainability.
We build this in 3D, so you can envisage what the end product will look like. Our technology lets us virtually show you what your house will look like – from walking through the front door to the selected fittings and fixtures.
This building process is often the most stressful, so we do it all for you. We know and understand it well, so we take care of commissioning a team of experts required to sign off your design, like landscape architects, stormwater engineers, arborists and bushfire or heritage consultants.
We also manage communication with the council and respond to your neighbours’ queries.
Yes, that’s correct: our role also requires that we construct and design the interior architecture of your home. This is to ensure design cohesion with the outdoor and indoor spaces and consider the necessary planning during the building phase, like bulkheads or shower niches.
We ensure the design of your home doesn’t stop at the structure and roof tiles but extends throughout the home – from countertops and bathroom tiles to staircase materials and balustrades.
A critical part of the architectural process is the management of the construction of your home. We work with you to build the master plan and help find the right builder by bringing together a panel of our best, which you can choose from.
We manage the contract and inclusions to ensure that the pricing is accurate and any specifications are included and costed. We also work closely with your builder to provide and discuss detailed technical plans.
Read more articles about what architects do.