Chicago Architecture Market - 2012


How are things for Chicago architects these days? Is there a general sense that Chicago offices are relatively healthier and getting more work over the past 6 to 12 months?

I've noticed almost no postings for Chicago jobs, but I've been told most hiring occurs by personal referral, etc. So, it seems difficult to gauge based on this alone.

I realize construction in Chicago itself is still stagnant, but I get the impression that some of the larger offices are having success in international markets (china, brazil, etc). Any truth to this??

Just hoping to get a general sense for the vibe. The last round of comments on chicago architecture were from 2008 and were horribly pessimistic. Hoping for some optimism!!


Apr 3, 12 6:56 pm

The Chicago job market is starting to show signs of life...I'd say it's at about 14 beats/minute but still not able to eat solid foods.  Getting in is as you said, mostly by personal referral.  A friend was able to get a position that way in December (4 years experience), within a week of posting that office received over 200 applications.

It's hard to say which or what type of offices are busy and which are barely treading water.  Firms are competing for projects that 5 years ago they would've never bid for, large firms are trying to eat into work that small/medium firms would normally take.  I'm sure that's the case everywhere, but I've heard that from a few business owners.

Those that are employed are busy, some extremely busy.  Another friend works for a prominent design office and he comes in on Sunday's roughly every other week...  It's tough to say, just keep your head up and apply!

Apr 3, 12 8:04 pm

any other thoughts friends?

Apr 5, 12 9:41 pm

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