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We revealed earlier this week that RIBA’s latest Future Trends survey for January 2015 shows that all UK regions remain positive about upcoming work with the overall balance figure remaining at +29, the same as December 2014.

However, Adrian Dobson, director of practice, RIBA, believes there is plenty of scope for growth in the industry even though workloads in the last 18 months have grown between six and eight per cent.

“We estimate the total value of work in progress remains some 25 per cent below its pre-recessionary peak,” said Dobson.

“This illustrates that there remains significant potential for further growth in the demand for architectural services – if the economic recovery maintains momentum.

“We have seen a steady decrease in the number of our respondents reporting that they had personally been under-employed in the last month and this suggests that most of the spare capacity retained within the profession during the recession is now being productively employed.

“We therefore anticipate more substantial growth in overall employment levels in 2015.”

The RIBA has begun tracking quarterly staffing levels with overall staff levels up two per cent year-on-year.

“Although we are not yet recording a dramatic increase in overall staffing levels, we are seeing evidence of some practices encountering difficulties in attracting new staff with the right mix of skills and experience,” added Dobson.

The commercial and private housing sectors are the most optimistic about workloads at present with confidence dipping for public and community sector workloads at +6 and +3 respectively.

Image: Ronn Aldaman

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