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What Is A Design Manager In The Construction Industry?

over 1 year ago by Daniel Stargatt
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One of the professions that Project Resource specialises in supplying to employers are Design Managers.  We always have jobs for Design Managers, Design Coordinators and Design Engineers.  

Design Managers can work in freelance Design Management jobs or permanent Design Management jobs. Design Management, Design Coordination, Design and Build Management and Design Engineering are all high demand, low supply professions in the UK, meaning it's a great career to get into if you want to be in demand, receive good pay and have lots of career choice.

What is a Design Manager?

A Design Manager is someone who manages all the processes in relation to producing a set of drawings that a building can be built from.  They are also known as Design Coordinators or Design and Build Managers.  This can be a challenging and highly satisfying role with the manager playing a key part in the success of a building project. 

They are highly motivated, professional individuals and are asked to use their organisational skills to bring together architects, structural engineers and services engineers, along with specialist designers, with the aim of producing a coordinated design.

What does a Design Manager do?

Their work involves:    

  • Managing a design team;
  • Managing the design process using his/her commercial, contractual, programme/time awareness and technical expertise;
  • Supporting, understanding and advising the client as to the requirements and his/her obligations in the development of a building design;
  • Encouraging and inspiring design consultants to produce their best work using their full flair, experience, resources and talents in a cost effective way;
  • Ensuring the design process recognises current legislation, standards and codes of practice, where appropriate;
  • Ensuring design information is of the right quality and keeps pace with project timescales; and
  • Striving to eliminate health and safety risks in the design and financial risks during construction.

What makes a good Design Manager?

  • Design Managers must be good forward planners and excellent motivators as they have to manage large teams with different goals to enable them to work together to produce a coordinated and coherent design.  
  • They need to be able to keep cool under pressure. 
  • They need good people skills, the ability present their ideas effectively and to be able to evaluate the ideas of others whilst in meetings. 
  • They need an in-depth knowledge of all aspects of a construction project and be efficient document managers.

How do you become a Design & Build Manager?

To become a Design and Build Manager you most likely need a minimum of:

  • 5 GCSE’s (A-C Grade) or equivalent (it’s useful if you’ve taken subjects such as maths, science, geography, information technology or design technology).
  • A BTEC in Building Studies, Building Engineering or Building Management.
  • Or a HNC / HND / Degree in Construction Management or Architecture (including an industrial placement).

Plus a minimum of three years experience of managing elements of construction projects. Further qualifications can include membership of the Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB) or Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA).

What next?

If you are looking for your next Design Manager role or would like to see what Design Management opportunities are availble check out all of our Design Manager jobs or Design Management jobs