For a while now, the architectural business model has remained constant. While other industries have adapted to the growing innovations, many architects still have the outdated practice of exchanging time for dollars.
In architecture, innovation is everything required for success. This reality has pushed some architects to consider other career paths that they can offer their unique skills to a competitive advantage. But the truth is, when designing for clients, it’s essential to nurture values of innovation.
So what do you do?
Investing in innovation is the best way to reap healthy profits for businesses and the planet. But with innovation, ideas management is crucial to ensure what sees the light of day and what doesn’t.
Here are some ideas for architects to encourage innovation.
- Adapt Idea Management System
The idea management system is the process of creating, growing, and applying ideas to drive them to their ultimate potential with the help of idea management software. So, with architecture business, an idea management system means;
- Look for great ideas from within or outside
- Understand and improve problems and necessities of development
- Develop ideas gradually from the first idea to a steady proof concept
- Carry the proofs of concept up to a complete, functional product
As an architect, it would be best to manage incoming ideas from several sources constantly. This will help you set priorities, make a budget and ensure teams are engaged in their respective projects to make the most impact.
The best idea management software easily adapts to your business model, being flexible for different functions. Ultimately, it enhances your productivity, decision-making, and innovation results.
Once you structure your think tanks, it becomes easy to generate captivating designs and quickly develop them to reach a broader range of clients.
- Make Your Office an Innovation Lab
If you visit the most successful architecture firms, you’ll notice the employees have set time and physical space. This way, it becomes easy to search for new ideas, research, and discuss reasonable ideas anytime.
Therefore, architects must have a working space that’s thoughtfully designed to stimulate and encourage the staff to reach their full potential. For instance, you can build staircases that act as broad group seating areas, coffee stations, and writable glass.
- Embrace Technology
In this digital transformation era, architects use powerful digital modeling tools to experiment differently with form. Typically, technology impacts architects’ structural designs and how clients experience and view the design process. Still, technology is helping engineers to develop a building design that guarantees durability efficiently.
From structures that imitate the shape of a mushroom to even more complicated forms, architects are using a progressive suite of technological tools to ensure both the client and the environment are happy.
Some architectural advanced technology tools that improve visualization and communication include 3D printing, BIM, and VR. Still, idea management software falls in the technology section.
- Engage the Community
In the past, a developer would buy property, plan how to use it, and then hire an architect who would get legal approval and build the project. Today, innovation is not just an expert thing. There’s a significant shift in the order of ‘business as usual, where everyone can be part of the change, so anyone becomes an architect.
The architects need to become the innovation itself. This way, they set proper conditions for innovation to happen. In this case, it would be best to consult the public, end-users, and community groups in the design process, encouraging idea sharing.
- Collaborate With an Engineer
Anybody can think of an idea for new and unique structures, perhaps a floating staircase? However, an idea alone is not enough without the input of an engineer.
Consequently, architects and engineers work together to turn ideas into reality. They identify fresh approaches, materials usage, cost savings, and working systems, making buildings become as they are or better than imagined.
- Work With Wood
As old as humanity, wood has been building durable and quality structures. But, steel and concrete took over in the mid-19th century, even though wood remains far more sustainable in design. Steel and concrete are not eco-friendly options because they have higher carbon footprints from manufacture to transportation.
Only a few logs will fall and decompose with proper wood harvesting, producing methane, a potent greenhouse gas. Therefore, it would help the architecture business find better and more innovative ways to integrate wood.
- Experiment with Innovation and New Materials
Always consider alternative material choices. Aside from the traditional wood and concrete, you can also opt for fiberglass, acrylic, and retrieved mechanical equipment. This way, you’ll bring out unique and striking designs that impress clients and remain eco-friendly.
With innovation, you must find new ways of practicing designs in architecture. New materials and innovations will bring you close to the prize.
- Analyze Prefabrication and Modular Design
Prefabricated and modular designs encourage architects to achieve sustainability, cost savings, and beauty in their structures.
Therefore, designers need to invest in high-quality repetitive elements to reduce environmental impacts and keep the overall project aesthetic cheaper.
- Seize Every Chance to Learn
Architecture is a field of continuous learning. Therefore, architects should seek to develop their innovative ideas and approaches for use in all projects. It would be best if you thought of investing and engaging in research projects that allow you to share the results with your team members.
With time, more materials, new technologies, processes, idea management systems, and environmental data will push the need for architectural innovation. Thus, architecture firms should prioritize innovation to enable better buildings and, eventually, better business.
- Convert Your Business into Brand
Architecture, like most fields, is a comprehensive venture. It would be best for an architect to specialize in specific fields that make them stand unique.
Naturally, particular expertise will brand your architecture firm. Besides, clients prefer working with specialists in different fields. This might be design, master plan, civic, cultural, or residential.
There’s no architecture without innovation. Architects without innovation are just planners that use the same method to put some pieces together. Such a life and job are not just dull but also prohibited in the world of architecture in every domain.
Successful architecture organizations know and implement the best idea management software to nurture the innovative spirit. In the end, successful architects innovate, not just for innovation, but to improve their skills and environment and bring reality to the dreams and ambitions of their clients.
Blog Article by Sam Darwin