Bureau of Labor Statistics

Architectural and Engineering Managers

architectural and engineering managers image
Architectural and engineering managers plan activities in architectural and engineering companies.
Quick Facts: Architectural and Engineering Managers
2020 Median Pay $149,530 per year
$71.89 per hour
Typical Entry-Level Education Bachelor's degree
Work Experience in a Related Occupation 5 years or more
On-the-job Training None
Number of Jobs, 2019 198,100
Job Outlook, 2019-29 3% (As fast as average)
Employment Change, 2019-29 5,100

Summary

What Architectural and Engineering Managers Do

Architectural and engineering managers plan, direct, and coordinate activities in architectural and engineering companies.

Work Environment

Most architectural and engineering managers work in offices, although some may also work in research laboratories and industrial production plants or at construction sites. Most work full time and some work more than 40 hours a week.

How to Become an Architectural or Engineering Manager

Architectural and engineering managers typically need at least a bachelor’s degree and considerable work experience as an architect or engineer.

Pay

The median annual wage for architectural and engineering managers was $149,530 in May 2020.

Job Outlook

Employment of architectural and engineering managers is projected to grow 3 percent from 2019 to 2029, about as fast as the average for all occupations. Many of the new jobs for architectural and engineering managers are expected to be in computer systems design and related services and in consulting firms.

State & Area Data

Explore resources for employment and wages by state and area for architectural and engineering managers.

Similar Occupations

Compare the job duties, education, job growth, and pay of architectural and engineering managers with similar occupations.

More Information, Including Links to O*NET

Learn more about architectural and engineering managers by visiting additional resources, including O*NET, a source on key characteristics of workers and occupations.

What Architectural and Engineering Managers Do

Architectural and engineering managers
Architectural and engineering managers assign workers specific parts of a project to carry out.

Architectural and engineering managers plan, direct, and coordinate activities in architectural and engineering companies.

Duties

Architectural and engineering managers typically do the following:

  • Make detailed plans for the development of new products and designs
  • Determine staff, training, and equipment needs
  • Propose budgets for projects and programs
  • Hire and supervise staff
  • Lead research and development projects to produce new products, processes, or designs
  • Check the technical accuracy of their staff’s work
  • Ensure the soundness of methods their staff uses
  • Coordinate work with other staff and managers

Architectural and engineering managers use their knowledge of architecture or engineering to oversee a variety of activities. They may direct and coordinate building activities at construction sites or activities related to production, operations, quality assurance, testing, or maintenance at manufacturing sites.

Architectural and engineering managers are responsible for developing the overall concept of a new product or for solving the technical problems that prevent the completion of a project. To accomplish this, they must determine technical goals and produce detailed plans.

Architectural and engineering managers spend a great deal of time coordinating the activities of their staff with the activities of other staff or organizations. They often confer with other managers, including those in finance, production, and marketing, as well as with contractors and equipment and materials suppliers.

In addition, architectural and engineering managers must know how to prepare budgets, hire staff, and supervise employees. They propose budgets for projects and programs and determine staff, training, and equipment needs. These managers must also hire people and assign them specific parts of each project to carry out. Architectural and engineering managers supervise the work of their employees, set schedules, and create administrative procedures.

Work Environment

Architectural and engineering managers
Architectural and engineering managers frequently work in groups.

Architectural and engineering managers held about 198,100 jobs in 2019. The largest employers of architectural and engineering managers were as follows:

Manufacturing 35%
Architectural, engineering, and related services 26
Government 9
Scientific research and development services 6
Management of companies and enterprises 6

Most architectural and engineering managers work in offices, although some may also work in research laboratories and industrial production plants or at construction sites.

Work Schedules

Most architectural and engineering managers work full time and some work more than 40 hours a week. These managers are often under considerable pressure to meet deadlines and budgets.

How to Become an Architectural or Engineering Manager

Architectural and engineering managers
Architectural and engineering managers advance to their positions after years of employment as an architect or engineer.

Architectural and engineering managers typically need at least a bachelor’s degree and considerable work experience as an architect or engineer.

Education

Architectural and engineering managers typically need at least a bachelor's degree in an engineering specialty or a master's degree in architecture.

Some also obtain business management skills by completing a master’s degree in engineering management (MEM or MsEM) or technology management (MSTM) or a master’s degree in business administration (MBA). Some workers earn their master’s degree before advancing to management positions, and others earn it while they work as a manager. Typically, those who prefer to manage in technical areas pursue an MsEM or MSTM and those interested in more general management skills earn an MBA.

Engineering management programs usually include classes in accounting, engineering economics, financial management, industrial and human resources management, and quality control.

Technology management programs typically provide instruction in production and operations management, project management, computer applications, quality control, safety and health issues, statistics, and general management principles.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

Managers advance to their positions after years of employment as an architect or engineer. They usually have experience working on difficult or complex projects, developing designs, solving problems, and making decisions. Before moving up to a management position, they also typically gain experience leading engineering teams.

Important Qualities

Analytical skills. Architectural and engineering managers must evaluate information carefully and solve complex problems.

Communication skills. Architectural and engineering managers oversee staff and work together with other levels of management. They must effectively communicate orders and lead teams to meet goals.

Detail oriented. Architectural and engineering managers must pay attention to detail. Their duties require an understanding of complex systems since a minor error can cause major problems.

Math skills. Architectural and engineering managers use calculus and other advanced mathematics to develop new products and processes.

Organizational skills. Architectural and engineering managers keep track of many workers, schedules, and budgets simultaneously.

Pay

Architectural and Engineering Managers

Median annual wages, May 2020

Architectural and engineering managers

$149,530

Management occupations

$109,760

Total, all occupations

$41,950

 

The median annual wage for architectural and engineering managers was $149,530 in May 2020. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $95,310, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $208,000.

In May 2020, the median annual wages for architectural and engineering managers in the top industries in which they worked were as follows:

Scientific research and development services $174,710
Management of companies and enterprises 157,760
Manufacturing 148,880
Architectural, engineering, and related services 148,120
Government 137,420

In addition, some architectural and engineering managers may receive more benefits—such as expense accounts and bonuses—than workers who are not managers.

Most architectural and engineering managers work full time and some work more than 40 hours a week. These managers are often under considerable pressure to meet deadlines and budgets.

Job Outlook

Architectural and Engineering Managers

Percent change in employment, projected 2019-29

Management occupations

5%

Total, all occupations

4%

Architectural and engineering managers

3%

 

Employment of architectural and engineering managers is projected to grow 3 percent from 2019 to 2029, about as fast as the average for all occupations. Many of the new jobs for architectural and engineering managers are expected to be in computer systems design and related services and in consulting firms.  

Demand for civil engineering services is expected to continue as the nation’s aging infrastructure requires expansion and repair. Mechanical and electrical engineering services also should be needed for projects such as wind turbine farms and other renewable energy construction and design.

Job Prospects

Because these jobs are highly desirable, candidates can expect competition for openings.

Those with technical knowledge, strong communication skills, and years of related work experience, especially working on complex projects, will likely be in the best position to become managers.

In addition, because architectural and engineering managers are involved in the financial, production, and marketing activities of their firm, business management skills can be beneficial for those seeking management positions.

Employment projections data for architectural and engineering managers, 2019-29

SOURCE: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Employment Projections program

Occupational Title

Architectural and engineering managers

SOC Code11-9041
Employment, 2019198,100
Projected Employment, 2029203,200
Percent Change, 2019-293
Numeric Change, 2019-295,100
Employment by IndustryGet data

State & Area Data

Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics (OEWS)

The Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics (OEWS) program produces employment and wage estimates annually for over 800 occupations. These estimates are available for the nation as a whole, for individual states, and for metropolitan and nonmetropolitan areas. The link(s) below go to OES data maps for employment and wages by state and area.

Projections Central

Occupational employment projections are developed for all states by Labor Market Information (LMI) or individual state Employment Projections offices. All state projections data are available at www.projectionscentral.com. Information on this site allows projected employment growth for an occupation to be compared among states or to be compared within one state. In addition, states may produce projections for areas; there are links to each state’s websites where these data may be retrieved.

CareerOneStop

CareerOneStop includes hundreds of occupational profiles with data available by state and metro area. There are links in the left-hand side menu to compare occupational employment by state and occupational wages by local area or metro area. There is also a salary info tool to search for wages by zip code.

Similar Occupations

This table shows a list of occupations with job duties that are similar to those of architectural and engineering managers.

Occupation Job Duties ENTRY-LEVEL EDUCATION 2020 MEDIAN PAY
Aerospace engineers Aerospace Engineers

Aerospace engineers design primarily aircraft, spacecraft, satellites, and missiles.

Bachelor's degree $118,610
Architects Architects

Architects plan and design houses, factories, office buildings, and other structures.

Bachelor's degree $82,320
Civil engineers Civil Engineers

Civil engineers design, build, and supervise infrastructure projects and systems. 

Bachelor's degree $88,570
Construction managers Construction Managers

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

Bachelor's degree $97,180
Electrical and electronics engineers Electrical and Electronics Engineers

Electrical engineers design, develop, test, and supervise the manufacture of electrical equipment.

Bachelor's degree $103,390
Industrial engineers Industrial Engineers

Industrial engineers devise efficient systems that integrate workers, machines, materials, information, and energy to make a product or provide a service.

Bachelor's degree $88,950
Industrial production managers Industrial Production Managers

Industrial production managers oversee the daily operations of manufacturing and related plants.

Bachelor's degree $108,790
Materials engineers Materials Engineers

Materials engineers develop, process, and test materials used to create a wide range of products.

Bachelor's degree $95,640
Mechanical engineers Mechanical Engineers

Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices.

Bachelor's degree $90,160
Nuclear engineers Nuclear Engineers

Nuclear engineers research and develop the processes, instruments, and systems used to derive benefits from nuclear energy and radiation.

Bachelor's degree $116,140

Contacts for More Info

Last Modified Date: Wednesday, June 2, 2021

Suggested citation:

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Architectural and Engineering Managers,
at https://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/architectural-and-engineering-managers.htm (visited July 17, 2021).

Telephone: 1-202-691-5700 www.bls.gov/ooh Contact OOH

View this page on regular www.bls.gov

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