“If you can’t describe what you are doing as a process, you don’t know what you’re doing.” – W. Edwards Deming
What is it that architects do? It’s a good question and one we should be able to answer easily. In reality our passion is to serve our clients, better the communities we live in and create spaces that are functional beautiful and economical – that’s what drives us!
To do all that we need a clear plan, to develop a plan you need a vision. A vision which grows businesses, increase teamwork and enhances existing community assets. This vision also needs to be achievable. This can all be broken down into “simple” steps:
Not unlike the quote above our work is a process. It’s a series of steps that starts with outlining and investigating the problem. Here we ask questions that greatly contribute to why we design what we do. We look for what your goals are, the facts about the job, concepts to address and your overall needs. Call it developing a Vision or Building Programming it’s the foundation to all great design.
Designs can stand easily up under a strong foundation, but they too must be tested. This is where needs and goals turn into the infancy of real spaces. This early testing is where you see which ideas best fit the program. All communicated through hand sketches, physical models and computer renderings.
Now that real ideas are forming together we come back to the table to test some more. It’s here where the ideas can flow and mold with little cost or time impacts. It’s where the team can maximize their skills and creative passions for your good.
When working with large groups this is a good time to take the ideas beyond the core decision makers to share and test again before starting final drawings. The continuation of clear information shared across all avenues of media is the cornerstone to making great ideas a reality.
To clearly and cleanly show what needs to get built the nuts and bolts of putting together drawings and specs must occur. Here we apply our construction knowledge to make great ideas buildable; all done on computers through a team of highly skilled professionals.
So now you’ve got your dream on paper and ready to build. It’s all designed to meet the building and energy codes and permit forms are submitted. What’s next? Our professional hat of construction administration starts with answering questions from contractors so they can assemble accurate bids. Sharing with them what you need done. It’s the beginning of the phase where ensure what is drawn is built with the care and accuracy you deserve.
Once bids are received we help you to assemble the legal documents with your contractor, setup construction review meetings, review pay apps, make minor adjustments for in field items all to ensure you’re represented; basically our professional services at your disposal so you can continue with your own job and family. This professional representation continues through warranty periods – all in a passionate pursuit for quality.
I hope you can see little more about our process and why we’re so passionate about having a clean approach. It’s all in the name of bettering this community with functional and beautiful spaces which we can afford.
Remember, although this encompasses the standard services its only tip of the iceberg to the assistance architects can offer. In future articles we’ll expand on other less known services such as budget assistance, early planning, long term scheduling, detailing and information sharing which all fit under the hat of an architect.