The number of architects claiming jobseeker’s allowance (JSA) in the UK fell to 995 last month
The latest official labour market statistics show an eight per cent fall in the number of architect claimants compared to last year.
Around 1,000 architects were receiving JSA in January. The figure reached a record high of 2,055 in August 2009.
However, the figures, which covers architects, consultants, chartered architects and landscape architects, do not account for practitioners that choose to work in other fields or do not sign on.
Competition for roles is still very high as people flock to the capital
The improvements in the employment market have been echoed by the experiences of recruitment specialists serving the industry. David Madden of employment agency Mustard said: ‘We’ve seen a steady rise in the architectural market this last year and are still finding that the epicentre is in London with some larger more commercial projects moving forwards and some funding moving through in healthcare, education and housing.
‘Although there has been recent rumblings in the more commercial sectors with developers suddenly pushing ahead with some excellent schemes. That being said the competition for roles is still very high as people flock to the capital believing that it is easier to get work there than elsewhere.’
He addd: ‘Salaries and rates outside of London are slowly starting to rise but are certainly nowhere near the peak ‘all those’ years ago. Certain areas of the market are still struggling especially in the domestic market but internationally the UK based firms are seemingly doing well.’
Lindsay Urquhart of Bespoke Careers reported a similar optimism among practices in the capital. She said: ‘The market seems to have turned a corner since late January. Just this week I hired three new recruits for our own London team to keep up with demand.
‘This isn’t what I was expecting when we made plans for the year ahead back in December. But I’m not complaining.’