Impact of COVID-19 on European Architecture Firms

Impact of COVID-19 on European Architecture Firms
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Impact of COVID-19 on European Architecture Firms

The Architects’ Council of Europe interviewed its member organizations to find out how they were coping with the COVID-19 crisis, try to assess the first impacts on the profession and the architecture market, and gather information on the measures put in place to help companies and the self-employed to overcome the crisis.

ACE member organizations

ACE member organizations follow the recommendations issued by the competent authorities of their country. Since mid-March, their staff has worked to a large extent at home. At the start of the quarantine, the transition to telework and remote collaboration in teams posed difficulties in certain organizations, mainly because they did not have the appropriate technological means. The transition was easier for organizations that already had telework policies in place. In any case, the organizations’ services were not interrupted – they continued to fulfill their missions.

Several organizations have taken measures to facilitate the obligations of architects towards them: postponement of the date of payment of contributions; postponement of the date of declaration of continuing vocational training; suspension of training obligations.

Communication in times of crisis

ACE member organizations do their utmost to provide information and advice to architects in this time of crisis, including:

  • health and safety recommendations in architectural offices;
  • information on state aid and financial provisions for companies and the self-employed;
  • legal and administrative advice concerning personnel, contracts, accounting, building permits, insurance, etc .;
  • practical advice for preserving jobs and businesses;
  • protocols for construction sites.

Several organizations have created new sections on their websites or set up hotlines to answer questions from their members. They are closely monitoring the development of the situation through regular surveys of architects. They also often act as intermediaries between architects and the competent public authorities capable of supporting them and answering their questions. Many of them are in close contact with their national governments to report on the impact of the crisis on the profession and to propose initiatives to support the profession.

First impacts on the architectural profession

The situation on construction sites varies greatly from one country to another and depends on the type of projects. In many countries, construction sites have been halted or are experiencing major slowdowns due to problems with the delivery of materials and new health and safety measures introduced to protect workers.

It is still too early to accurately assess the impact of the crisis on the profession and the architecture market. However, several organizations are already reporting that architects are experiencing problems with non-payment or late payment. They are worried about possible short/medium-term cash flow problems if too many projects are slowed down, blocked, or canceled, as well as possible legal disputes concerning the possible application of “force majeure” clauses in construction contracts and professional service contracts.

Economic support for companies and the self-employed

In a large majority of countries, governments have taken steps to support companies and the self-employed who face economic hardship, including:

  • reduction or deferral of payment of taxes (VAT, social security contributions, etc.);
  • contribution to employee salaries, in the case of part-time work or if the company suffers a loss of turnover;
  • government-guaranteed loans;
  • credit facilities;
  • solidarity fund for companies and the self-employed;
  • public procurement adaptation measures.

The Architects’ Council of Europe will continue to follow developments closely. At IM电竞登录, our priority is establishing a seamless project workflow to keep our uncompromising standards of timely project delivery of CAD Services in Covid-19 Crisis while ensuring the well-being of our employees. We value humanity above all and we promote the culture that we have also built into our business. We are dedicating our time, efforts, and resources to fighting this battle and helping our fellow citizens in this difficult time.

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