Have you completed the Canadian Architectural Practice Benchmark Survey?
The Royal Architectural Institute of Canada and Canadian Architect are pleased to announce their partnership to refresh and update the Canadian Architectural Practices Benchmark Survey (CAPBS). This survey aims to provide comprehensive, anonymized data on the current standards for compensation, billings, EDI, and other key indicators among Canadian architectural practices.
Why are we asking you to participate in this survey? We know the value of access to vital business knowledge for the Canadian context. Current data will allow practices to compare themselves across a broad spectrum of criteria, providing possibilities to identify areas of strength, challenge and opportunity.
Our goal with this survey is to obtain high-quality data to inform practice management, as well as to create a historical record that will help with futurecasting for the profession. This survey and report was last completed in 2011, and prior to that, in 2009. For the 2023 survey, we will be refreshing the 2011 survey, and adding new sections related to Indigenous themes and reconciliation, climate action, and equity and justice, diversity, and inclusion.
To complete this important work, we are working with Bramm Research Inc., a consultancy which has supported previous editions. We are grateful to several RAIC committees and volunteer groups for their input in this 2023 version, including the Committee on Regenerative Environments , Indigenous Task Force , Truth and Reconciliation Task Force, Promoting Equity and Justice Committee, and Practice Support Committee.
We know this benchmark survey update is overdue, and are committed to collecting this data more frequently. We are looking forward to your participation both as individuals and as firms.
- Survey opens: March 7/2023
- Survey closes: April 21/2023
- Publication: Fall/Winter 2023
What areas does the survey cover?
The survey will cover 13 areas of inquiry from the previous survey, as well as three new areas:
- Demographic Information e.g., type of firm, age of firm, markets served, staffing, gender, age
- The Office e.g., location, own/rent, sq. ft., renovations/ upgrades
- Human Resources and Training e.g., existence of an HR dept., in-house training staff, amount spent on training
- Coverage and Benefits e.g., benefits offered
- Performance Appraisals e.g., how appraisals are performed, types of employees reviewed
- Billing Practices e.g., gross billings, fee type, % profit, hr. billing rates, frequency of updating rates
- Sub-consultants/Consultants e.g., standard mark-up fees, coordination fees
- Compensation e.g., base salaries, bonuses paid
- Incentive Compensation e.g., incentive compensation plans, profit sharing, basis for profit sharing
- Expenses e.g., amount spent in various areas
- Information Technology e.g., total spending on IT, amount spent in specific areas, operating systems used, technologies used (BIM, etc.)
- Marketing Activities e.g., amount spent on marketing, types of marketing
- Request for Proposals e.g., RFPs responded to in past three years, competitions entered, cost to develop a proposal
- (New) Equity, diversity & inclusion including enhanced demographic self-identification questions on ethnicity, ability, age, gender and sexual orientation
- (NEW) Climate / sustainability
- (NEW) Indigenous topics / reconciliation
Who should complete the survey?
The survey will capture data from both individual practitioners and from firms of all sizes. Please only complete the survey once, either individually or once on behalf of your firm. We have planned five communications during the survey deployment period, coming both from the RAIC and Canadian Architect. All communications are for the same survey, and are meant to reach the largest number of Canadian architects and interns.
All individual licensed architects and intern architects are encouraged to complete the survey. Select “individual” at the start of the survey to be taken to the correct path of questions.
To avoid duplication, we request that one response be submitted per firm. If your organization has multiple locations, you are welcome to submit a response for each location. Please ensure to select “firm/organization” at the start of the survey to be taken to the correct path of questions.
How long will the survey take?
We estimate the survey will take between 30-45 minutes to complete.
Why should you participate?
We have heard from many of you that this information is necessary. Its main purpose is to create a benchmark of current information for the profession. We know the value of access to vital business knowledge for the Canadian context. Current data will allow practices to compare themselves across a broad spectrum of criteria, providing possibilities to identify areas of strength, challenge and opportunity. By participating in the survey, you will be directly contributing vital information to this collective knowledge.
Are there any incentives to participate?
All participants will receive a 50% discount for the purchase of the final benchmark survey report publication (electronic publication only).
- Survey participants (RAIC members): $125
- Survey participants (non-RAIC members): $175
- Regular full price (RAIC members): $250
- Regular full price (non-RAIC members): $350