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Project Design Director(SHANGHAI):Shanghai , China(Mainland)

Job Title

Project Design Director 

Job Description

The primary function of a Project Design Director is the administration and oversight of the design personnel, work assignments, contracts and budgets. 

The Project Design Director will be meeting corporate expectations of the position when s/he is successful in:

1. Supervising and completing projects on schedule and   within budget.
2. Managing client relationships in a manner that results in customer satisfaction, repeat business and referrals.
3. Developing employees who are direct reports.


The following are primary responsibilities of the Project Design Director:

1. Enforce and adhere to the codes of the company's Employee Manual.
2. Oversight and management of design department personnel.  Ensure personnel follow procedures to deliver quality products/services that meet client, agency and company expectations. 
3. Lead and inspire design staff in producing quality projects.
4. Develop and maintain standards of architectural design and services.
5. Establish and implement design department procedures.
6. QC assurance.
7. Mentoring and training of direct reports (Design Managers, Design Directors, Senior Designers and Designers).  Aid in developing and maintaining basic industry knowledge and architectural skills.
8. Liaison with other directors regarding policies, procedures, staffing, QC and project issues.
9. Represent company with professionalism, thoroughness and passion.

The following are primary duties of the Project Design Department Director:

Design Process Oversight
1. Ensure that project design brief, identifying program and quality parameters and specific goals in written and reviewed with principals and team at project inception. Review and update periodically.
2. Overall supervision of design process, including verification of timely progress and appropriate coordination among design staff, Design Manager, Project Manager and other sources, as needed.  
3. Oversight of Design staff to insure proper tracking of project scopes, and compliance with budgets and schedules. 
3. Leverage principal time- involve them at key project QC points, client interface opportunities, staff mentoring, marketing opportunities.
4. Attend appropriate project meetings as requested by Project Designers and Project Managers, Principals or clients.
5. Make presentations to clients, potential clients, civic associations and government bodies as requested by Project Designers, Project Managers or Principals.
6. Review timecards for proper coding extra service (“R”) numbers and accuracy of reporting.
7. Maintain a thorough understanding of entitlement processes and the Company’s roles in those processes. Insure company standards and procedures are being followed. Identify and develop needed new procedures and standards. Review existing procedures, techniques and make recommendations for change.
8. Coordinate with regional offices to insure company standards are coordinated.
9. Delegate and assign internal projects (improved standards development, new trends research, etc.) to appropriate and available staff. Insure completion and implementation of these special projects. 
10. Participate in weekly design scheduling meetings.
11. Coordinate with Project Managers on overall workload, project assignments, cross training.
12. Coordinate with regional offices to assist in completion of design project assignments.
13. Oversight responsibility for development and maintenance of design development standards and procedures.
14. Other duties as required.

Project Supervision
1. Insure that standards of accuracy are followed and appropriate to the stage of the project. Train team members on proper procedures for obtaining and utilizing project surveys, zoning code interpretations, tenant criteria, etc.
2. Review project entitlement actions for completeness and appropriateness to the clients program.
3. Quality assurance role. Be sure that design work (including conceptual site planning, building design concepts, etc.) is being reviewed by senior staff prior to distribution to client.
4. Oversee project transition from schematic entitlements through DD to Construction Document phase. Be sure responsible staff are following best practices in efficient preparation of documents and complete transfer of information. Insure follow-thru by design staff on QC reviews of construction documents for conformance to design intent.
5. Coordinate timely project reviews with Project Designers and Project Managers. 
6. Meet regularly with Project Designers and other design personnel to review project status, quality control, contracts and budgets. Identify problem areas, recommend and take corrective actions early to keep projects on track.
7. Insure that Work Authorization forms are being utilized.
8. Direct involvement with Clients when appropriate to insure satisfaction and train Design staff. 
9. Insure that meetings and conversations with outside parties are properly documented.

Design Leadership
1. Supervise execution of designs. It is not intended for Project Design Director to be Project Designer or Project Manager.  As with Principals, he or she is to provide guidance to design staff.
2. Work with Principals in the ongoing development of a philosophical approach to architectural design and planning for the company. Apply the approach to each project.
3. Work with Principals to develop and maintain the company’s presence and competitive edge in the marketplace.
4. Look for and take advantage of opportunities to innovate. 
5. Make recommendations for highest and best use of sites for client consideration. Identify appropriate opportunities to bring in other senior staff and directors to thoroughly evaluate unusual or special opportunities.
6. Keep current with industry developments, artistic influences and historical references. Act as a resource for design and planning trends.

Staff Relations
1. Evaluate performance of design staff. Assist Principals in annual and ongoing performance reviews.  Counsel design staff regarding performance, as needed.  Make recommendations on training methods, procedures and staff opportunities for professional growth. 
2. Coordinate with Principal-in-Charge concerning personnel staffing requests, questions or issues.
3. Mentor designated staff members and recommend mentors for others.  Act as good listener, positive motivator and provide supportive forum for discussing problems and aspirations. Provide guidance to enhance professional growth.
4. Maintain professional and congenial relationship with architectural and support staff.
5. Maintain regular working hours in support of project team.
• Attend required company-sponsored seminars.  
6. Counsel subordinates concerning their performance, progress and company policies. Mentor and coach staff on ongoing basis. 
7. Provide motivation to design staff and provide the best possible working environment.
8. Continually seek opportunities to improve department procedures, quality of execution, new technologies. 

1. Report any leads or suggestions toward securing new work.  Pursue leads as directed.
2. Seek out areas of new work with existing clients.
3. Actively pursue and participate in professional activities.
4. Prepare materials needed for project proposals as requested. Coordinate the input of design and marketing staff.

The Project Design Director will be evaluated based on all of the items in this job description.  The following items represent the primary performance benchmarks that the company will be measuring and the tools that will be used to provide measurement input. 

1. Quality of documents.  Documented tracking of QC review procedures being followed on projects.
2. Customer satisfaction level.
3. Consistency of utilization of procedures and standards by direct reports. (i.e.: effective design development packages that result in streamlined document preparation)
4. Follow-up for signed agreements and administer contract scopes of work to direct reports.
5. Staff retention and professional training.  Success in developing personnel to grow within the firm.
6. Adherence to Human Resources procedures.  Primary performance measurement:  percent of employee reviews completed by the review date.
7. Leadership and Organization: Pro-active goal setting for design in relation to client/project goals. Periodic written updates.
8. Delegation and Tracking: Increasing ability to assign broad work scope and tracking/monitoring individual achievement.
9. Communication: Maintain contemporous information flow among team and client for large picture to specific issues.
10. Presentation: Competency in presentations to client and public agencies.



1. Professional architectural degree preferred or equivalent experience.
2. Architectural licensure in state where office is located preferred.
3. 10+ years of experience in architectural practice with a minimum 5 years in design and project management preferred.
4. Advanced knowledge of architectural design, site planning and graphic presentation.  Understanding of current design and planning trends and industry developments.
5. Advanced knowledge of design development and construction techniques.
6. Advanced knowledge of codes and development entitlement processes.
7. Advanced knowledge of hand drawing and drafting skills and their application in the development and presentations of company designs.
8. Understanding of CAD, and other current graphic software and their application in the development and presentations of company designs.
9. Working knowledge of the architectural project management processes.
10. Ability to coordinate design goals and application through construction administration
11. Proven creative talent.
12. Demonstrated oral and written English communication skills.
13. Demonstrated ability to present project designs, both for internal team meetings and to client and government agencies.
14. Demonstrated ability to translate client goals into an architectural project program and to lead design team by delegating assignments to other team members.


Accountable To/For

The Project Design Director reports to a Principal, Regional Director, Program Director or Studio Director
Project Designers, Senior Designers and Designers report to the Project Design Director