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Call for entries for this year's AJ100 survey


The deadline looms for submissions to the UK’s most important architecture survey - the prestigious AJ100

Practices need to submit their data before Friday 18 February 2011 to take part in the annual showcase of the nation’s hundred most influential architectural companies.

As the profession moves cautiously out of recession, the results of the AJ100’s research will reveal key observations about the changing face of the industry - information that will benefit all architects.

The questions remain largely the same as last year, and once again, Imperial College London is working with the AJ to analyse the data and provide greater insights.

To contribute to the AJ100 and fill out the questionnaire, go to www.aj100awards.com. The survey is also available in Microsoft Word and pdf format (see right-hand margin of this page).

AJ100 - 2011 award categories

1. Highest First Time Entrant

The highest placed newcomer on the AJ100 list

2. Fastest Growing Practice

The Fastest Growing Practice Award is given to the practice that increased its fee earnings and its number of qualified architect employees by the highest percentage in 2010

3. International Practice of the Year

This category looks at the AJ100 practice that has performed most successfully overseas in the past 12 months

4. Employee Initiative of the Year     
This category looks at HR issues including staff satisfaction, workplace culture, benefits and staff turnover. Employers need to submit an entry to show what initiatives they have put in place to help motivate, train, ideas to reduce staff turnover or develop new business in the current climate.

5. Practice of the Year

This award is designed to recognise the leading practice based on business and design output. Taking into account key business data from the AJ100 survey and employee survey

6. Regional Awards

1. Midlands

2. North East and Yorkshire

3. North West

4. Northern Ireland

5. Scotland

6. South East and London

7. South West

8. Wales

The best practices out of each of the eight regions around the UK, compiled from data from employee survey and validated by the AJ100 survey

7. Most Sustainable Practice                     

Looking at a range of issues around sustainability both for your practice and for your projects. To be considered for the AJ100 Most Sustainable Practice category firms will need to complete the AJ100 survey and send in a supporting information pack by the deadline date of the 18 February

8. Building of the Year                

Simply the best design of 2010

9. Contribution to the Profession

An award that’s voted for by the industry for significant efforts in the world of architecture


Readers' comments (2)

  • My practice doesn't feature in this - because it doesn't enter - why should it? However it means that the results are inaccurate...

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  • Christine Murray

    Thanks for asking. Just some background and hopefully a thorough response to your question:

    The AJ100 practices are the biggest employers of qualified architects in this country. As such they play a strong role in shaping what it is to be an architect in the UK today.

    The AJ uses data from the survey, working with Imperial College London, to track how the profession is faring and report back to the profession on trends in architect salaries, fees, markets, sectors, etc.

    There are typically three or four practices that should be in the AJ100 that occasionally decline to submit the AJ100 survey.

    Sometimes this is a one-off, and they re-enter the survey the following year. Other times they have had a difficult year, and have been forced to make an undue number of redundancies, which would see them fall in the AJ100 ranking.

    But there may also be practices that are uncomfortable with the level of transparency the AJ100 survey requires:

    The value of the survey as a piece of research is that it is extensive – we ask a number of sensitive questions, such as the salary range of Part 1, Part 2, associates, architects, directors and partners, fee scales and the female-to-male ratio of employees, as well as economic questions, such as the practice’s foreign fee income in different regions, or their architectural fee income vs. total fee income.

    I can’t answer why your practice has declined to enter, and it's hard to speculate, as I don't know where you work. Perhaps there is something about their company data that doesn't fit with their branding or image – maybe they don't employ a lot of fully-qualified architects, but their brand is bigger than their size. Or perhaps they don't feel transparency is important.

    Many practices enter the AJ100 because they understand that this is a valuable piece of research, and participation is important. They also get a number of benefits throughout the year for being in the 'club' -- such as breakfast briefings, lunches, networking opportunities with clients, gov't officials, etc.

    As a journal of record, of course we would like the list to be complete – although in terms of accuracy – even with the absence of three or four practices – the data is still statistically solid. We work closely with Imperial to ensure this.

    The data still reflects the day-to-day work of nearly 6,000 qualified architects, not to mention the myriad technologists, year-out students, etc.

    As the output and methodology of the practices included is diverse, from sector specialists such as Populous and Purcell Miller Tritton, to ideologically-strong practices such as Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios, through the AJ100, we are able to report on the shape and economic health of the profession, and make solid predictions for the coming year.

    What can we predict? Where the work is, what kind of work, and what kind of practice is delivering it.

    Also, on the individual level, we can tell architects what the AJ100 practices' priorities are, who is hiring, what sectors are hot, etc.

    I hope this answers your question.


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