Demand for Design Services Bolsters Compensation for Architects
Prolonged economic expansion, a near 50-year low unemployment rate, and a 40 percent increase in non-residential construction spending over the last several years has led to an increase in compensation for architects. Pay for architectural staff positions has risen by more than six percent per year since early 2017, according to the 2019 AIA Compensation Survey.
The biannual compensation report provides salary data for more than 40 architecture firm positions in cities across the United States as well as industry salary trends and analysis on where the market is headed.
Key findings of this year’s report, include:
- Over the past two years, compensation for architectural positions increased at 2.5 times the pace of growth of all professional and related staff in our economy.
- The last instances where architect compensation reached an increase of 6 percent per year—1999 and 2008—were either just prior to, or as the economy and the construction sectors were entering, national economic downturns.
- Benefits and flexibility to staff increased as did additional benefits that enhance the culture of the firm and help make it more employee-friendly.
In addition to the compensation survey, AIA members can use the AIA salary calculatorto learn topline data on architecture position salary ranges by region of the country. The online tool is free to all members.