Landscape Architect Survey Reveals Improved Business Conditions

The American Society of Landscape Architects' (ASLA) first-quarter business survey shows a significant jump in inquiries for new work, more firms planning to hire.

Business conditions are starting to look up for landscape architecture firms, according to the American Society of Landscape Architects’ first quarter 2013 Business Quarterly survey. Firms reported a surge in inquiries from potential clients for new work, as well as more stable or rising billable hours. These improved findings are reflected in more robust plans for hiring.

Fully 61.8% reported more inquiries for work, representing an increase from 42.1% last quarter. In addition, 76.1% indicated stable to higher billable hours in the first quarter of 2013, compared to 66.5% last quarter.

This uptick has improved hiring plans. Of all firms with two or more employees, 54.5% indicated they would be hiring in the second quarter of 2013, compared to 41.8% last quarter. Some 31.7% of firms with two or more employees said they plan to hire a landscape architect next quarter, either entry-level or experienced, a notable increase from 24.7% previously.

“The larger number of inquiries for new work is a welcome sign of a brightening economic picture, and more members are expressing confidence by hiring more staff,” says Nancy Somerville, Hon. ASLA, executive vice president and CEO of ASLA. “We are continuing to see incremental signs of improvement and believe that, at last, things are moving forward for the landscape architecture profession.”