How to Interview Architects

How to Interview Architects? With over 400 projects under our belt, we’ve been through the interview process more than 800 times.

Yes, sometimes the interview occurs at the end of a tough day and the potential customer (or me)  is tired and not on their game, but sometimes it seems like there’s no planning or forethought before the interview begins.  Here are some battle-tested strategies. I want to engage too- I want a conversation that is meaningful and revealing to both of us.

Let me suggest an approach that starts with some easy questions to interview architects then get into a few tougher ones. Call me @ 914 674 2950, let’s discuss your situation.

Just to get the conversation going you may start-

  • 1. Like,”Tell me what you think of our project?”  or “Can you tell me a little more about the ___project that we saw on your website?”
  • 2. What kind of services do you offer?  Full package or limited? Are you involved during bidding and construction? How about approvals and permits?
  • 3. How do you bill?  Hourly, lump sum, square footage or percentage?
  • 4. What is a  typical schedule for similar projects?  Can you tell me a little about the various phases?
  • 5. What are your staffing levels, education levels?  How many are licensed?
  • 6. Is work done in-house? or subbed out?
  • 7. Do you have strong relationships with certain contractors? Who are they? Can you tell me a little about them?
  • 8. How much experience do you have in this type of project? Why should we choose your firm?
  • 9. How much experience do you have in this municipality?
  • 10. Can you tell me a bit about jobs that did not go well. What factors do you feel were at play here? How can we avoid that for our project?
  • 11. How do you like to communicate? Email, text, phone-call? Myspace?
  • 12. What percentage of your work is from referrals?
  • 13. Have you been involved in any judgments or law suits? What happened – if  you can share?
  • 14. Can you provide us with similar project references?
  • 15. How many project in your office? Can you safely handle all these projects?
  • 16. What else should I be asking?

Selecting an architect is an important step in the design-construction process. Don’t blow it.  We know we can’t be everybody’s choice  of architect, but we frequently recommend some good ones with more expertise in certain areas with no remorse.

Call Steve now at 914 980 5532.

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