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Become An Architectural Project Manager

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Working As An Architectural Project Manager

  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others
  • Scheduling Work and Activities
  • Getting Information
  • $88,000

    Average Salary

What Does An Architectural Project Manager Do

Construction managers plan, coordinate, budget, and supervise construction projects from start to finish.

Duties

Construction managers typically do the following:

  • Prepare cost estimates, budgets, and work timetables
  • Interpret and explain contracts and technical information to other professionals
  • Report work progress and budget matters to clients
  • Collaborate with architects, engineers, and other construction specialists
  • Select subcontractors and schedule and coordinate their activities
  • Respond to work delays, emergencies, and other problems
  • Comply with legal requirements, building and safety codes, and other regulations

Construction managers, often called general contractors or project managers, coordinate and supervise a wide variety of projects, including the building of all types of public, residential, commercial, and industrial structures, as well as roads, memorials, and bridges. Either a general contractor or a construction manager will oversee the construction phase of a project, although a construction manager may also consult with the client during the design phase to help refine construction plans and control costs.

Construction managers oversee specialized contractors and other personnel. They schedule and coordinate all construction processes so that projects meet design specifications. They ensure that projects are completed on time and within budget. Some managers may be responsible for several projects at once—for example, the construction of multiple apartment buildings.  

Construction managers work closely with other building specialists, such as architects, civil engineers, and a variety of trade workers, including stonemasons, electricians, and carpenters. Projects may require specialists in everything from structural steel and painting to landscaping, paving roads, and excavating sites. Depending on the project, construction managers may interact with lawyers and local government officials. For example, when working on city-owned property or municipal buildings, managers sometimes confer with city inspectors to ensure that all regulations are met.

For projects too large to be managed by one person, such as office buildings and industrial complexes, a top-level construction manager hires other construction managers to be in charge of different aspects of the project. For example, each construction manager would oversee a specific phase of the project, such as structural foundation, plumbing, or electrical work, and choose subcontractors to complete it. The top-level construction manager would then collaborate and coordinate with the other construction managers.

To maximize efficiency and productivity, construction managers often perform the tasks of a cost estimator. They use specialized cost-estimating and planning software to allocate time and money in order to complete their projects. Many managers also use software to plan the best way to get materials to the building site.

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How To Become An Architectural Project Manager

Large construction firms increasingly prefer candidates with both construction experience and a bachelor’s degree in a construction-related field. While some individuals with a high school diploma and many years of experience in a construction trade may be hired as construction managers, these individuals are typically qualified to become self-employed general contractors.

Education

It is becoming increasingly important for construction managers to have a bachelor’s degree in construction science, construction management, architecture, or engineering. As construction processes become more complex, employers are placing greater importance on specialized education.

More than 100 colleges and universities offer accredited bachelor’s degree programs in construction science, building science, or construction engineering. These programs include courses in project control and management, design, construction methods and materials, cost estimation, building codes and standards, and contract administration. Courses in mathematics and statistics are also relevant.

More than fifty 2-year colleges offer construction management or construction technology programs. An associate’s degree combined with work experience is typical for managers who supervise smaller projects.  

A few universities offer master’s degree programs in construction management.

Those with a high school diploma and several years of relevant work experience may qualify to become a construction manager, although most are qualified to become self-employed general contractors.

Training

New construction managers are typically hired as assistants and work under the guidance of an experienced manager. This training period may last several months to several years, depending on the firm.

Work Experience

If the typical education is not obtained, practical construction experience is important for jobseekers, because it reduces the need for initial on-the-job training. Internships, cooperative education programs, and previous work in the construction industry can provide that experience. Some construction managers become qualified solely through extensive construction experience, spending many years in carpentry, masonry, or other construction specialties.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Although not required, certification is becoming increasingly important for construction managers. Certification is valuable because it can demonstrate knowledge and experience.

The Construction Management Association of America awards the Certified Construction Manager (CCM) designation to workers who have the required experience and who pass a technical exam. It is recommended that applicants for this certification complete a self-study course that covers the professional role of a construction manager, legal issues, the allocation of risk, and other topics related to construction management.

The American Institute of Constructors awards the Associate Constructor (AC) and Certified Professional Constructor (CPC) designations to candidates who meet its requirements and pass the appropriate construction exams.

Some states require licensure for construction managers. For more information, contact your state licensing board.

Important Qualities

Analytical skills. Most managers plan a project strategy, handle unexpected issues and delays, and solve problems that arise over the course of the project. In addition, many managers use cost-estimating and planning software to determine costs and the materials and time required to complete projects.

Business skills. Construction managers address budget matters and coordinate and supervise workers. Choosing competent staff and establishing good working relationships with them is critical.

Customer-service skills. Construction managers are in constant contact with owners, inspectors, and the public. They must form good working relationships with these people and ensure their needs are met.

Decisionmaking skills. Construction managers choose personnel and subcontractors for specific tasks and jobs. Often, these choices must be made quickly to meet deadlines and budgets.

Initiative. Self-employed construction managers generate their business opportunities and must be proactive in finding new clients. They often market their services and bid on jobs, and they must also learn to perform special home improvement projects, such as installing mosaic glass tiles, sanding wood floors, and insulating homes.

Leadership skills. Managers must effectively delegate tasks to construction workers, subcontractors, and other lower level managers.

Speaking skills. Managers must give clear orders, explain complex information to construction workers and clients, and discuss technical details with other building specialists, such as architects. Self-employed construction managers must get their own projects, so the need to sell their services to potential clients is critical.

Technical skills. Managers must know construction methods and technologies, and must be able to interpret contracts and technical drawings.

Time-management skills. Construction managers must meet deadlines. They ensure that construction phases are completed on time so that the next phase can begin as scheduled. For instance, a building’s foundation cannot be constructed until the land is completely excavated.

Writing skills. Construction managers must write proposals, plans, and budgets, as well as document the progress of the work for clients and others involved in the building process.

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Average Length of Employment
Project Architect 5.3 years
Staff Architect 3.9 years
Project Manager 3.5 years
Project Designer 3.0 years
Top Careers Before Architectural Project Manager
Architect 8.0%
Designer 3.7%
Draftsman 3.4%
Internship 2.7%
Top Careers After Architectural Project Manager
Architect 5.5%
Owner 4.8%
Consultant 4.0%
Principal 3.0%
Designer 2.7%

Do you work as an Architectural Project Manager?

Average Yearly Salary
$88,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$54,000
Min 10%
$88,000
Median 50%
$88,000
Median 50%
$88,000
Median 50%
$88,000
Median 50%
$88,000
Median 50%
$88,000
Median 50%
$88,000
Median 50%
$142,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
Apple
Highest Paying City
Fremont, CA
Highest Paying State
Alaska
Avg Experience Level
4.3 years
How much does an Architectural Project Manager make at top companies?
The national average salary for an Architectural Project Manager in the United States is $88,409 per year or $43 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $54,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $142,000.

Real Architectural Project Manager Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Cognos Architecture Manager W.J. Deutsch & Sons, Ltd. White Plains, NY Jul 07, 2016 $155,000
Cognos Architecture Manager W.J. Deutsch & Sons, Ltd. Stamford, CT Feb 05, 2016 $155,000
Architecture Manager Via Alliance Technology, Inc. Fremont, CA Sep 01, 2014 $143,000
Architecture Manager Via Alliance Technology, Inc. Fremont, CA May 25, 2016 $143,000
Architecture Manager Cigna HLIC Bloomfield, CT Mar 06, 2015 $142,166
Architecture Manager Cigna Health and Life Insurance Company Windsor, CT Feb 11, 2016 $140,000
Manager, Application Architecture Deloitte Services LP Dallas, TX Apr 05, 2016 $138,300 -
$145,000
Cognos Architecture Manager W.J. Deutsch & Sons, Ltd. White Plains, NY Nov 28, 2014 $136,414
Architecture Manager Cigna HLIC Windsor, CT Feb 23, 2015 $135,000
Architecture Manager Cigna Health and Life Insurance Company Windsor, CT Dec 09, 2016 $132,200
Architecture Manager Cigna HLIC Windsor, CT Sep 29, 2014 $130,000
Cognos Architecture Manager W.J. Deutsch & Sons, Ltd. White Plains, NY Nov 28, 2014 $128,692
Manager, Application Architecture Deloitte Services LP TN Sep 12, 2016 $128,398 -
$131,398
Manager, Application Architecture Deloitte Services LP TN Jul 31, 2015 $110,500 -
$128,000
Manager, Applications Architecture Deloitte Services LP TN May 31, 2015 $110,000
Manager Application Architecture Deloitte Services LP TN Aug 04, 2014 $108,500
Manager, Application Architecture Deloitte Services LP TN Sep 22, 2014 $108,500
Project Manager Architecture McNaughton Architecture, Inc. Redlands, CA Sep 04, 2015 $108,190
Project Manager Architecture McNaughton Architecture, Inc. Redlands, CA Sep 08, 2015 $108,190
Project Manager Architecture McNaughton Architecture, Inc. Redlands, CA Aug 24, 2015 $108,190
Manager, Application Architecture Deloitte Services LP Dallas, TX Oct 06, 2014 $108,100
Architectural Drafter and Project Manager TW2M Design/Build LLC New York, NY Nov 21, 2016 $83,480 -
$166,960
Architectural Drafting Manager Jaynes Structures, Corp. Albuquerque, NM Apr 20, 2015 $82,082
Project Architecture 1 Klingstubbins Inc. Philadelphia, PA Jun 19, 2015 $81,890
Architectural Project Manager Village Builders, LLC Hyde Park, UT Sep 07, 2015 $75,000
Architectural Project Manager Oaklander, Coogan & Vitto Architects, P.C. New York, NY Sep 14, 2013 $74,880
Manager, Application Architecture Deloitte Services LP TN Apr 09, 2016 $73,965
Architectural Project Manager Quality Kitchen Fabricators Inc. Santa Clara, CA Aug 23, 2013 $72,996

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Top Skills for An Architectural Project Manager

  1. Construction Document Production
  2. Shop Drawings
  3. Architectural Project
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Managed the construction document production, specification writing and construction administration.
  • Manage Architectural/Engineering/MEP/Floor Joist/Roof Truss/Cabinet consultants and/or in-house staff in the development of construction documents and shop drawings.
  • Managed coordination of architectural project teams through all aspects of various high-end corporate interior and facility management projects.
  • Converted hand drawings into AutoCad drafting, managed supplementary materials.
  • Reviewed and evaluated the proposals of General Engineering Consultants, System Engineering Consultants, Planning Consultants, and Design Build Contractors.

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Top 10 Best States for Architectural Project Managers

  1. Delaware
  2. California
  3. New Jersey
  4. Rhode Island
  5. Tennessee
  6. Connecticut
  7. Massachusetts
  8. North Carolina
  9. Alaska
  10. Virginia
  • (176 jobs)
  • (5,410 jobs)
  • (1,132 jobs)
  • (128 jobs)
  • (535 jobs)
  • (495 jobs)
  • (1,611 jobs)
  • (1,364 jobs)
  • (61 jobs)
  • (1,706 jobs)

Architectural Project Manager Demographics

Gender

Male

70.3%

Female

18.1%

Unknown

11.6%
Ethnicity

White

58.7%

Hispanic or Latino

17.7%

Black or African American

10.6%

Asian

9.5%

Unknown

3.6%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

45.2%

Portuguese

14.3%

Italian

9.5%

French

7.1%

German

4.8%

Japanese

4.8%

Chinese

2.4%

Hawaiian

2.4%

Vietnamese

2.4%

Dakota

2.4%

Polish

2.4%

Arabic

2.4%
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Architectural Project Manager Education

Schools

University of Florida

9.8%

Lawrence Technological University

7.2%

Texas A&M University

6.5%

Drexel University

6.5%

University of Houston

5.9%

University of Illinois at Chicago

5.9%

University of Phoenix

5.2%

Kansas State University

4.6%

New Jersey Institute of Technology

4.6%

Pratt Institute-Main

4.6%

University of Southern California

4.6%

Syracuse University

3.9%

Illinois Institute of Technology

3.9%

Wentworth Institute of Technology

3.9%

California Polytechnic State University-San Luis Obispo

3.9%

Northeastern University

3.9%

Columbia University

3.9%

Iowa State University

3.9%

Ball State University

3.9%

University of Texas at Arlington

3.3%
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Majors

Architecture

41.4%

Business

8.2%

Drafting And Design

6.6%

Environmental Design

5.5%

Computer Science

5.1%

Interior Design

4.5%

Construction Management

4.0%

Architectural Technology

3.2%

Urban Planning

2.8%

Electrical Engineering

2.3%

Management

2.0%

Civil Engineering

2.0%

Landscape Architecture

2.0%

Architectural Engineering

1.8%

Engineering

1.7%

Fine Arts

1.5%

Education

1.4%

Project Management

1.4%

Computer Information Systems

1.4%

Architectural Engineering Technology

1.1%
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Degrees

Bachelors

44.8%

Masters

22.4%

Other

16.7%

Associate

9.5%

Certificate

3.6%

Diploma

1.9%

Doctorate

1.1%
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