10 Most Common Problems That Architects Face When Handling Projects

Any established architect will tell you that every project they work on is unique and provides new opportunities and new challenges. While this is most certainly true, all these projects still share some common ground — most often in the form of problems that seem to be unavoidable, regardless of the type of project we’re talking about.

With the employment of architects expected to grow 8% between 2018 and 2028, many are starting to show interest in this profession. The best way to determine whether this profession is for you is to analyze some of the common problems many architects have to face when handling projects. So, let’s take a closer look at them.

Keeping Track of the Team

An architect can never work alone, especially not when they’re working on a larger project, so that a talented team will surround every good architect. Tasks will need to be delegated, and the team members will each need to have their specific roles. This is the only way that the project can come to life.

Of course, you cannot simply hand out the tasks then leave your teammates to their own devices. You need to keep open lines of communication to ensure success. Every member needs to report on their progress, and you will need to keep track of their work and make sure that everyone is meeting their deadlines.

Keeping track of the team is made easier with some of the popular collaboration tools currently available, but it’s still one of the main challenges that most architects face.

Language Barriers Between Architects and Clients

One of the most exciting aspects of working in architectural design is getting a chance to collaborate and work with clients from all over the world. While this can be an educational and rewarding experience, it does come with some unique challenges. The language barrier between architects and clients can cause great problems and even make the project come to a halt.

Overcoming the language barrier is much more difficult than it seems. It isn’t just a matter of translating sentences from one language to another; it’s ensuring that the client’s idea of the project matches yours.

This is where architectural visualization can come in quite handy. Using 3D rendering to develop your ideas can offer many benefits and ensure that you and your client genuinely see eye-to-eye. You don’t have to create photorealistic designs and perfect every detail, but you should use 3D rendering software to visualize your designs before the construction process begins.

Overall Client Communication

Even if you and your client both speak the same language, you can still often encounter problems with communicating ideas. Perhaps the client isn’t entirely sure of how they’d like the result to look like, maybe they’re vague, or cannot come up with the words to describe their ideas. 3D visualization is still the best solution to this.

However, even with 3D visualization, there can still be a lot of back and forth between you and your client. To ensure that everything is streamlined and that your work matches the client’s expectations, you should communicate with them every step of the way. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and offer your ideas and insights, and check with your client before you make any changes to the project. Surprises are rarely a good thing when you’re an architect.

Dealing with Deadlines and Staying on Budget

While most people tend to believe that they can work well under pressure, this is rarely the case. Over 41% of stressed workers say that stress causes a loss in productivity, and this can be very detrimental. If you’re working on a project with strict deadlines and a very tight budget, there’s no escaping the pressure and the stress.

The best way to deal with this is to stay organized. Keep track of the team, keep an eye on the deadlines, and find solutions that will help you stay within the budget. Communicate with your clients clearly if you’re not meeting the deadline or are unable to stay on budget.

There are many time and budget tracking apps that can keep you organized and notify you if you’re approaching the budget.

Bringing the Project to Life

Many clients tend to hire the services of the architect, ask for appealing design, and then leave the project unfinished. The reasons behind this vary, so it can often be challenging for architects to see their creation come to life.

The only way to battle this problem is to ensure that the design wows everyone. Architects cannot hope to do this with 2D sketches and complicated floor plans. 3D visualization is the only way to mesmerize audiences.

Investing time and effort into creating a 3D representation of your design can be your most significant selling point as an architect. It will showcase your skills and talents, and it will help the clients see what the results will look like. This can give them the extra push they need to finalize the project and send it to construction.

Ensuring Good Design and Good Construction

The main job of the architect is to come up with an appealing design that will wow clients and draw attention from the public. But what happens when the design is perfect, but the construction of it far from the ideal? The design will look bad, the client will likely be less than satisfied, and the project might reflect poorly on your portfolio.

This is why architects need to communicate clearly that good design is dependent on proper construction. Keep in touch with your clients, let them know which materials you’ve had in mind when designing the project, and communicate the effect poor construction can have on the final design, the building aesthetics, and its overall appeal.

Dealing with Possible Problems Proactively

Errors in the architectural design can have devastating effects on the project if they’re overlooked. Poor calculations can become hazardous in the construction process, poorly placed electrical installations can become an eyesore, and the wrong placing of the doors, windows, and walls will make the design comical.

This is why it’s important to go over your projects carefully. Check every nook and cranny for mistakes and errors. This is yet another place where 3D rendering software can be beneficial.

The best software can notify you of any potential mistakes, bad angles, and more, and visualizing the building in 3D will allow you to notice any details that you might’ve missed. You’ll be able to proactively correct your mistakes and deal with problems before they even arise.

Coming up with Innovative Ideas

While most architects would love to have the creative freedom to do whatever they want, many find it very difficult to come up with innovative designs when they get the opportunity to do as they like.

There isn’t a clear-cut solution to this problem as everyone has their creative process, but there are a few things that can help.

Architects can always go to social media for inspiration and help. Join forums, online discussions, and ask for help from fellow designers who might offer some useful information. Online research can always provide interesting new ideas, and new technology can help you play around with designs that you never knew you liked.

Staying up to Date on New Hardware and Software

Many tools and software solutions can make an architect’s job more comfortable, but staying in the know about all the new developments is much more complicated than it may seem. There’s always a new app perfect for drawing 2D sketches, or a new program ideal for making precise calculations and measurements.

Many software updates require you to have a powerful machine to run them as well, so you always need to be on the lookout for new hardware if you want to stay competitive and productive.

While it’s difficult to stay in the know about all the new technologies ideal for architects, it can be precious, so all architects should try and stay informed about them.

Taking a Step Back

One of the most challenging problems that architects face when handling projects is taking a step back from them. All the deadlines, budget constraints, communication issues, and more can make it exceptionally difficult to come up with a great design, so it’s often necessary to take a step back from it all.

If you want to design great buildings and be full of fresh, innovative ideas, you need time to rest. Stepping away from a project can often offer a new perspective and allow architects to be more productive and efficient.

The Bottom Line

Architects face many problems daily, and learning how to solve them and overcome them is of utmost importance. Being aware of the common issues gives insight into the profession, and can get you prepared for working in this field.

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