Counterpoint Architecture Directors Mark Kennedy and Zammi Rohan sat down with the ACA to share their experience of merging practices, collaboration with practices of varying scales, the joys and challenges of regional practice, and tips for client engagement, choosing projects and making necessary mindshifts around practice.
Tracking the Client Experience
Clients, like all people, value being listened to and afforded the opportunity of giving feedback, says Beaton Chairman George Beaton, who discusses the powerful impact of feedback on client satisfaction and professional reputation.
Careers: Samantha Rich
CareerTrackers placements with Lendlease and SJB gave Samantha Rich valuable real-world experience, feedback and skills she could immediately draw upon when she left university.
Mentoring case study – SJB
SJB has implemented two mentoring programs to cater for different preferences and needs – a less formal program called SJBuddies and the more formal SJB Mentoring.
Mentoring case study – Bates Smart
Bates Smart outlines their reasons for setting up their mentoring program, which is part of a broader Career Planning Framework and includes approximately 280 participants.
Mentoring case study – COX
COX Architecture outlines how their mentoring program works, the benefits and challenges of implementation, and some advice for others keen on setting up a program for their own practice.
Flexibility case study – Woods Bagot
Woods Bagot explains the process of committing to increased flexibility and outlines some of the benefits and challenges as they move forward into the ‘new normal’.
Flexibility case study – BVN
BVN outlines some of the initiatives that have worked for them in their transition to the All Roles Flex model and now a Hybrid Working Model.
Flexibility case study – COX
COX Architecture identified some key takeaways from the implementation process of the All Roles Flex policy.
Flexibility, Collaboration & Prioritising Mental Health
Greenway Architects Director Simon Frost discusses the challenges of the blended digital and physical environment, the need for empathetic collaboration in the industry, and the importance of prioritising good mental health.
Innovation, Collaboration & Training for Better Outcomes
Ardex National Specification and Training Manager Joel Clough says that the current demand for improved innovation in waterproofing, and increasing collaboration with architects during the specification phase, will lead to better outcomes and ultimately help return trust to the industry.
Managing Supply Chains & Rising Construction Costs
Emily Van Eyk, Director of Mt Eyk, shares her experiences of running a new practice through a pandemic, with the main challenges relating to supply chain delays, rising construction costs and keeping up with demand.
Building Morale, Motivation & Flexibility
Fulton Trotter Director Justine Ebzery says that Zoom and lockdown fatigue is real, and keeping up morale and maintaining motivation and energy levels through so much COVID uncertainty has been a key focus.
Communication & Quality IT
Silver Thomas Hanley Business Manager and ACA VIC/TAS Committee member Matthew Tence says good communication and significant IT investment have helped navigate and overcome the challenges of the last two years.
Putting People First
QLD/NT Committee member Denis Waring shares his pandemic experiences as Principal of PW Architecture, and the need to prioritise people through challenging times.
Members Hitting Milestones in NSW/ACT
Our NSW/ACT branch is celebrating 24 member practices who have been with the ACA for 25 years or more! This special group have been with us almost since the beginning and have witnessed dramatic change in both the profession and in our Association.
Fostering Connection & Offering Support
Conrad Gargett HR Manager and AMWF member Brooke Tranberg outlines some of the practice’s wellbeing initiatives, including in-house Social and Wellbeing Committees, a well-promoted EAP, open conversations about mental health, and a pre-COVID all-company Archi-Tour to foster connection.
Zoom, EAPs & Lockdown Love
Popular wellbeing initiatives for Fulton Trotter have included Wellness Wednesday, a formal EAP, Zoom drinks, yoga and art classes, and a little ‘lockdown love’, says FT Director and Chair of the AMWF QLD/NT Justine Ebzery.
The Three Pillars of Wellbeing
BVN’s Head of People & Character Brian Clohessy describes the practice’s wellbeing initiatives, including inhouse Working Cultural Groups, which focus on the three pillars of physical, social and mental wellbeing.
Innovation Day & Being Prepared
AMWF Vic/Tas member Kirby Roper reflects on the stresses of regular snap lockdowns and ways of maintaining wellbeing in practice, including the establishment of Innovation Day and being prepared for future disruptions.
Ventilation, Air Quality & the Need for a National Taskforce
Former Premier of Victoria and trained architect Ted Baillieu emphasises that ventilation in buildings is an urgent priority, deserving of a national taskforce to offer guidance and highlight the importance of air quality management.
New Competencies, Building Reform & Upcoming Projects
AACA CEO Kathlyn Loseby joins the organisation at an exciting time, with new competency standards to finalise and roll out, automatic mutual recognition on the way, and other new programs in development.
Keeping clients’ interests at the forefront is a key priority for Surry Hills–based ArtMade Architects, who have won Client’s Choice Awards two years running.
dwp | design worldwide partnership
Longstanding ACA member dwp has grown through a combination of acquisitions and organic growth over recent years and now has 12 studios across eight countries.
PI Insurance – Past, Present & Future
Planned Cover National Business Manager Cos Cirocco reflects on the evolution of PI Insurance in the building industry, the impacts of the NSW D&BP Act on the insurance market, and future changes and complexities in the industry.
Michelle Blakeley, Architect
Architecture is a second career for Michelle Blakeley. Here, she talks about the advantages of age, the influence of her former career, and the founding of an organisation to build homes for people experiencing homelessness.
Susan Dugdale & Associates
The small, busy team at Susan Dugdale and Associates have found that reputation and relationships are key when working in a remote regional location like Alice Springs.
The pandemic demanded rapid adaptation for Kirby Architects, but the experience was also empowering, revealing the possibilities of positive change and bringing the team closer and more determined to do great work.
New Industrial Relations Advisory
The ACA is delighted to introduce Tom Earls of Fair Work Lawyers (FWL), who will provide principal industrial relations advisory services for ACA members.
Targeted funding & thinking long term
Justine Ebzery reflects on the need for targeted funding for new public housing, public schools and community health infrastructure, with adequate resources for design and planning.
JobKeeper, HomeBuilder & going solo
Jennifer Crawford highlights the eligibility issues of JobKeeper and HomeBuilder, and describes her recent move back to the life of a sole practitioner.
Infrastructure of long-term benefit
ACA – WA President Malcolm Jones reflects on JobKeeper, the flexible workplace, and the need for more resources for infrastructure of long-term benefit.
Investment Needed in Civic Projects & Social Housing
ACA - Vic/Tas President and FFPV Director Paul Viney reflects on his experiences with past and present economic downturns, the need for more government investment in civic projects and social housing, and the challenges of COVID-19 and remote working.
Remote Working Advice
Working remotely can be challenging and disruptive, and requires realistic expectations and a flexible approach, says Charmaine Kai of Brisbane-based practice 8i Architects.
Innovation, Resilience & Relationship Building
COVID-19 disruption has been all-encompassing, but there are signs of innovation, community resilience and relationship building emerging all around us, observes Kate Fitzgerald of Fremantle-based Whispering Smith.
Investment in Digital Design
Existing investment in new digital platforms has meant that dwp|design worldwide partnership was well placed to switch to working mode when the COVID-19 crisis arose.
Planning for Health, Wellbeing & Financial Sustainability
As Queensland prepared for lockdown, Cairns-based practice People Oriented Design worked on strategies with health, wellbeing and the long-term financial sustainability of the practice firmly in mind.
New Challenges & Modes of Working
Hayball has explored varied modes of working and learning over many years, but the rapid shift to remote, distributed workplaces in the era of COVID-19 is a new challenge.
Building on Existing Flex Systems
For BVN, the transition to all staff working from home has been ‘seamless’. The ease of the move is an outcome of already having robust flex systems in place, a commitment to open honest communication, and a focus on health and wellbeing.
How are You Responding to COVID-19?
Online support is more important than ever. The ACA invites architectural practices across Australia to share practice experiences, knowledge and strategies.
Communication, Autonomy and Initiative
Brown Falconer is in the process of transitioning all staff to remote working. Mario Dreosti emphasises the importance of open communication and sharing both the knowns and the unknowns as essential to building trust, autonomy and initiative.
Policy, Process and Restricted Contact
Thomson Rossi’s approach to managing the practice in the context of the novel coronavirus is guided by a COVID-19 Policy Statement, which establishes clear boundaries and habits. Simon Thomson explains that the intent is to keep the office open as long as possible.
Tight Financial Management and Open Communication
TheFulcrum.Agency partner Emma Williamson explains how the consultancy is responding to COVID-19 and offers advice about how to proactively manage through a crisis while maintaining the cultural integrity of your practice.
Clear Communication and Patience
Justine Ebzery outlines the steps Fulton Trotter has taken in response to COVID-19 so far, including clear, regular communication to clients and employees, transitioning to more work from home arrangements, and a focus on patience and kindness.
Trialling Remote Working
Taylor Robinson Chaney Broderick (TRCB) has been trialling staff working from home for a number of weeks. Leigh Robinson generously shares details about how this is working, lessons learned, and the guidelines the practice has developed.
Vice President of the NSW/ACT branch Michael Lewarne discusses his early career, lessons learned in practice, and the value of thinking critically, maintaining curiosity, and making space for opportunities along the way.
For Melbourne-based Kosloff Architecture, building a positive, healthy practice culture is a key priority, and achieving B Corp status an important step in the evolution of the practice.
Building Industry Needs Significant Cultural Change
Newly appointed Victorian State Building Surveyor Andrew Cialini says it’s time for the building industry to preference public safety and quality over cost, and to implement change for the good of overall outcomes rather than self-interest.
Aileen Sage Architects
For Sydney-based Aileen Sage, early collaborations with artists, academics, innovators, larger architectural practices and other consultants have opened up a diversity of projects and opportunities.
As Birrelli celebrates its 25th year in business, Launceston-based architect and former ACA State President Jack Birrell reflects on the challenges and joys of practice on a remote island.
For multidisciplinary practice GHDWoodhead, growing the business is about strategic focus and working hard, with continued growth, global expansion and ongoing diversification the key ambitions.
Is Architectural Practice Making Architects Sick?
Professor Naomi Stead, Head of Architecture at Monash University, is one of the champions of a proposed new research project currently under development, Mental Wellbeing of Architects and Architecture Students: Culture, Education and the Workplace, which aims to examine links between architectural culture and identity and mental wellbeing. Here, Naomi takes a quick look at the issues.
For emerging practice Winter Architecture, location is no obstacle to team collaboration, with employees located around Australia. Here, Director Jean Graham describes the practice’s origins, ambitions and determination to remain flexible, agile and openminded.
Jackman Gooden Architects
Darwin-based practice Jackman Gooden Architects prides itself on its success in collaborative projects, aligning with other local and interstate architects, specialist consultants and design-oriented building contractors.
As International Women's Day 2019 approaches, ACA CEO Angelina Pillai reflects on her upbringing, the importance of seeing strong women leaders in public life, and the need to push for basic human rights for all.
Bijl Architecture founder and director Melonie Bayl-Smith shares the key lessons she has learned in practice, the value of mentoring programs, and the many benefits she has gained from involvement with professional organisations.
In 2018, HHH Architects celebrated its 40th anniversary on the Gold Coast, an opportune time to reflect on past achievements, succession planning and the challenges ahead.
As we kick off another year, we feature a wide-ranging interview with the first female Vice President of the National Executive Committee and President of the NSW / ACT branch.
Office of Regional Architecture
Business courses, development programs and mentoring opportunities have helped motivate a reassessment and continual improvement approach for Rosalie Pech Eva.
Williams Burton Leopardi
A series of challenges at Williams Burton Leopardi provided the impetus for a radical review and rethink of everything from client interactions to studio systems and processes.
Fulton Trotter Architects
Ongoing strategic planning helps Fulton Trotter create a road map for future business development opportunities, ensuring they stay relevant and working in the markets that will sustain their business.
The Mill: Architecture + Design
Learning when to say no to the wrong client, the wrong project or the wrong situation in general has been valuable for Shannon Battisson of The Mill in Canberra.
Bryant Alsop Architects
For Bryant Alsop, success comes from building strong relationships - with consultants, builders and suppliers as well as valued employees.
A client focus and a reverence for place have been fundamental for Denmark firm PTX Architects.