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What to Include in an Architect Resume

What to list in your architect resume depends largely upon the type of architectural position you're applying for. For instance, if you're fresh out of college and applying for a junior position, you'll most likely focus on your educational training and any internships that you completed; whereas, if you're applying for a senior architect position, you'll most likely need to highlight more of your managerial and team leadership experience.
No one right way exists to put together an architect resume, but as you can see from the architect resume samples, there are a few basics that you should include across the board, which consist of the following:
  • Summary
  • Education
  • Work Experience
  • Skills

As you can see from the architect resume samples, there are a couple types of resume formats, the most common of which are the chronological and functional formats. The chronological type lists work history, education, certification, and everything else in chronological order from the most recent to the earliest. Conversely, a functional format does not have to be in chronological order. Rather, it is designed to highlight the abilities, achievements, and experience that make you an ideal candidate for the job.
Generally, the chronological format is the most widely used, and typically people who use this format underwent educational training specifically with the goal of becoming an architect. People for whom the functional format might be most appropriate are those who didn't necessarily undergo schooling with the intentions of becoming of an architect, but who nonetheless feel they have the experience and qualifications to fulfill the job duties. A functional resume format is generally more flexible than the chronological one since you can list job experience and education in terms of significance and applicableness to the job you're seeking.

How to Write the Architect Resume Summary Statement

The summary statement clearly and concisely sums up the position that you're applying for and why you would be the best candidate for the job. Learn more about the company's mission and goals, and then incorporate how you will use your skills and qualifications to help the company meet its goals. This not only tells employers why they need to hire you, but it also shows them that you took the time to understand what their companies are all about. Employers can tell the difference between a general resume and one that was tailored specifically for them, so when you make the resume personal to the employer you're applying to, you're showing that you're willing to put in the extra effort.

Architect with 10+ years of leadership experience rural and urban housing construction. Demonstrated mastery in construction techniques and able to consistently deliver enhancements and solutions that drive customer satisfaction and loyalty. Proven mentor and trainer who's skilled at communicating with all members of the crew to develop a shared vision and foster a high-quality project.

Diverse Architect able to marry new architectural styles with traditional ones. Adept at utilizing basic and complex power tools, designing blueprints to meet client specifications, and working with clients to develop a realistic architectural design for their budgets. Specializes in residential housing construction.

Energetic Architect adept at implementing an innovative approach to all architectural projects. Excellent at developing comprehensive blueprints, incorporating sustainable features into designs, and creating unique projects that allow clients to express their architectural design preferences. Specializes in modern construction for the commercial industry.

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How to Write the Architect Education Section

The education section is where you list all the formal education you've received that qualifies you for the architect position you're applying for. If you received a degree in architecture, list the type of degree received, the date it was received, and where you received it. If you didn't receive your degree in architecture, list the degree that you did receive as well as any courses you took that were relevant to architecture to help qualify you for the position.
Additionally, if it's within two or three years since your graduation, you may also want to list any extracurricular activities or academic honors you've received. Though, once you've gotten a couple of years of work experience to list, drop the extra college achievements. Always list your highest level of education first, and only include your grade point average if you graduated with one higher than 3.0 and it's within the first couple years after you graduated. If you took breaks in between getting your degree, only list the date that you received your degree since that appears much more professional than listing breaks in attendance and having to explain the cause for the breaks in attendance. Include any certification, special licensure, and professional affiliations in this section as well. Most notably, you'll want to mention that you passed the Architect Registration Exam.

How to Write the Architect Work Experience Section

When writing the work experience section, it's important to list all relevant employment but not to simply list employers and dates. Yes, telling who your employers were and the dates that you were employed by them is important, but it is also important to let your potential future employer know the types of tasks you completed while employed and any achievements you were responsible for.
If you're following one of the chronological architect resume samples, ensure that you list all employment in chronological order from the most recent employment to the earliest. If you're using a functional resume format, focus on listing the jobs that you feel most qualify you for the architect position first. Focus on convincing the employer of the transferrable skills you have from other jobs that would enable you to complete the job duties required of the architect position you're applying for.

Action Verbs to Include in Your Architect Work Experience Section

When you're applying for an architect position, it's important to show that you know the technical lingo associated with the field. Good architect resume samples incorporate keywords such as the following:
  • Analyze
  • Build
  • Construct
  • Appraise
  • Budget
  • Render
  • Calculate
  • Process
  • Collaborate
  • Conceptualize
  • Design
  • Develop
  • Draft
  • Draw
  • Install
  • Plan
  • Visualize
  • Produce
  • Renovate
  • Schedule

How to Write the Architect Skills Section

Nearly all architect resume samples feature a skills section, and you should list any architect-specific skills that you have in this section. List a combination of both hard and soft skill sets. Examples of the soft skills that architects need include problem solving, research, communication, and mathematical skills. Examples of the types of hard skills that they need include project management, AutoCAD design software experience, and model making. If you have experience with a specific type of architectural design program, like Autodesk or ARIS, list it within the skills section.
Look at the company's job posting again, and if you possess any skills that it wants ideal candidates to have, be sure to list these in your skills section to show them what a good match you are for the job.
TIP: Need a cover letter? Click here to view our Architect cover letters.

Should I Include References in my Architect Resume

While some architect resume samples feature references, others don't. Whether or not to include references in your resume is a controversial and oftentimes debated subject. While some people advocate for including references, others believe that it's superfluous and repetitive information if you're simply listing employers who you've already listed on your resume in the work experience section.
Additionally, many employers nowadays are leery of offering any information beyond confirming the dates that you worked for them for fear of lawsuits for defamation of character and such. Generally, it is best not to include references with your resume unless the application instructions expressly instruct you to do so or if you have a reference who is a well-known expert in the industry. For instance, if you're a member of an architectural association, it might be permissible to list the president of the association as a reference. Of course, make sure that you've gained the permission of anybody you list as a reference before you do so.

Architect Resume Fails: Mistakes to Avoid

While there is no one right way to craft an architect resume, there are definitely certain mistakes you should avoid to ensure that your resume doesn't get passed over from the get-go. Some of the mistakes to avoid that you won't find in any of these architect resume samples include the following:
  • Inaccurate dates. While you might not remember the exact dates that you worked for an employer or completed a course, it is better to write no date at all than to write the wrong one. Writing simply the month and year, or just the year if that's all you know, is better than falsifying a date. Even if it's an honest mistake, conflicting information comes off as dishonest and unprofessional to employers.
  • Length. Attempt to keep the length of your resume to one page or less if you're relatively new to the industry. While there may be certain instances when it's permissible to submit a longer resume (e.g. you have extensive experience), a resume is generally supposed to be a summary of your most notable accomplishments and achievements. Employers don't have all day to read your entire work history if you've held numerous jobs. Simply list what's most important and be done with it.
  • Readability. Perhaps one of the most important elements of resumes is their readability. The entire point of a resume is to offer employers a document that is quick and easy to scan so that they can learn the most essential information that they need to know about an applicant. Resumes that feature distracting fonts and don't have a good flow are more difficult to read than those that are attractively formatted.
  • Too much information. Include only the information that the employer needs to know about you on your resume and only information that will help you get the job. For instance, the employer doesn't need to know your personal website, Facebook profile, and other such information, unless of course these platforms are structured professionally and dedicated to showcasing your architectural achievements.
  • Failure to connect with employer need. No matter how outstanding your achievements are, if you don't connect them with the employer's need, then you haven't successfully sold yourself to the employer. Employers don't just want to read a history about your accomplishments; they want to know how you'll use your previous experience and skills to benefit them.

Job Prospects in the Architect Industry

    It's anticipated that the architectural industry will grow by 17 percent by the year 2022, which is much faster than the average for all occupations. The reason for this is that architects will need to design the plans for new construction projects as well as those for home, office, retail, and other building renovations. Architects will especially be needed to design more hospitals and other healthcare facilities due to the increasing population and the need for additional buildings.
    Of course, existing buildings will also need to be renovated and brought up to code. Not to mention, architects who have knowledge of green or sustainable design will find more job opportunities than those in other fields due to the rise of environmentally conscious consumers and the furthering of the green movement. Not only will those who have training in sustainable design have an edge over the competition, but those with up-to-date training and technical skills will be able to edge out peers when competing for jobs at top firms.
    However, it is important to remember that the employment of architects is strongly dependent on the activity of the construction industry, so they can experience periods of unemployment periodically when construction is down.