Welcome to this year's league tables of architects, surveyors and engineers. Once again, numbers have swelled: the 200 companies on our list have 120,000 staff between them – that's 11% more than last year. A 13% rise in engineering employees across the board reflects growth spurts in the engineering-based consultancies in the top 10. Meanwhile, our quantity surveying table clearly shows the widening gap between big and small players. Confidence remains high across the board, with more than 80% of the companies planning to recruit staff – if they can find them – and seven out of 10 promising pay rises of 3% or more. All told, the survey paints a picture of an industry in good health but, as the research was done before 11 September and the clouds it cast over the economy, what we are seeing could well be an industry at its peak.
Key for all tables
N/A = Not available or not supplied
* = may not be included in total number of UK chartered staff
** = ranked by total chartered architects, and therefore not comparable with 2000 guide, which was ranked by total architectural staff including technicians

1 = Acquisition of JVS.
2 = Acquisition of Killam.
3 = Full assimilation of Amec's global structure.
4 = Purchase of Capita's International Business.
5 = Strategic partnership formed with Cumbria County Council (forming Capita DBS) and Darwen County Council in 2001. Acquisition of CNB Design (forming CNB Capita).
6 = Merger with Allott & Lomax. Acquisition of Kensalls, Ross Silcock, and Ken Cantley & Co.
7 = Merger with Schumann Smith resulting in 20 additional staff and £1.5m income.
8 = Acquisition of PMI and CNH Juruku Bahan, merger with CMM.
9 = Merger with Jacobs Engineering Group.
10 = Acquisition of John Meylan Associates July 2000.
11 = Acquired an office in Atlanta USA.
12 = Expansion of environmental, health and safety and chartered town planning skills though acquisitions.
13 = Became a limited company in July 2001.
14 = Acquisition of Pace Project Services, formation of TTPM Italia, TT Singapore, TTUSA & SIBC GMBH (with Siemens).
15 = Acquisition of De Leuw Rothwell and Knight Piesold.
16 = Incorporating Capital Project Services.
17 = Number of directors increased from four to six.
18 = Previously Birmingham Design Services, now merged with building surveying staff of Property Maintenance Management.
19 = Became limited liability partnership in July 2001.
20 = Moved from partnership into limited company.
21 = Small local practice acquired, which will add about £200,000 to turnover next year.
22 = Change of ownership.
23 = Merged with James Cunny Young, Edinburgh.
24 = Recently became alternative investment market-listed as part of Fitzharding.
25 = Acquisition of Maurice Baguley & Partners + European Consortium Framework and USA partnership.
26 = Figures for UK only.
27 = Formation of HMSGARBE and HMA Barnes Mason.
28 = Two new partners appointed.
29 = Merger with Hyatt Salisbury Whiteley.
30 = Structural engineering transferred to Thomason Partnership Structural Engineers.
31 = Merger between Alex Sayer and Boxall Davenport.
32 = Expanded its range of services.
33 = German office changed from branch to GMBH.
34 = Rationalisation of practice structure to management buyout/joint venture with the Post Office.
35 = Incorporated as an LLP in April 2001.
36 = Flooding/refurbishment of offices and slow partnership deals affected income.

Close to 400 firms were contacted for this year's Building consultants survey over the summer. They were asked for details on the number of chartered, non-chartered and technical staff, domestic and worldwide fee incomes, and fees per employee. Practices were also asked questions relating to speed of invoice payment, staff recruitment, likely wage increases, expansion plans, on-line bidding and IT spend. The results obtained regarding fee income per employee proved to be inconclusive or unreliable, and we have therefore decided not to publish them.

Those unable to respond included: Alan Cotterell Practice, Architects Co-Partnership, Architectural and Planning Group, Arnold & Boston, Binnie Black & Veatch, Blyth & Blyth, Bowman Riley Partnership, Browne Smith Baker, Carl Bro, Clancy Consulting, Clarke Nicholls Marcel, Curtins Group, DW Lamberts, DTZ, Entec UK, Frank Shaw Associates, Gilmore Hankey Kirke, Halcrow Group, Hanscomb, High-Point Rendel, HLM Architects, Hurd Rolland Partnership, Hurley Robertson and Associates, Jenkins & Marr, Jestico & Whiles, Kennedy & Partners, Keppie Design, King Sturge, Levitt Bernstein Associates, Maunsell, Montgomery Watson Europe, MPM Capita, NBA Quantum, NBW Crosher & James, Posford Duvivier, Purcell Miller Tritton, Rider Hunt, Rosemont Architecture and Surveying, RWS Project Services,

Schal, Sheppard Robson, Taywood Engineering, Carl Fisher Partnership, the Fairhursts Design Group, Parr Partnership, Thomas and Adamson.

Survey newcomers include: 3D Architects, Architects Design Partnership, Axis, Ahrends Burton & Koralek, AJP Frankham, Acanthus Lawrence & Wrightson, Boyden & Company, Barrie Tankel, Christopher Rodgers & Associates, Cobe Consulting, Davis Duncan Architects, Edmond Shipley, Edward Cullinan Architects, Faithorn Farrell Timms, Feilden Clegg Bradley, GM Rock Townsend, Househam Henderson Architects, HOK, Hilson Moran Partnership, Jenkins & Potte, JSA Consulting Engineers, Leslie Clark, Leach Consultancy, Landmark Architecture, Michael Squire & Partners, Max Fordham LLP, Needlemans, NAP Sherwin, PRC Fewster, Parsons Brinckelhoff, PCM, Project & Building Consultancy, Purslows, Quattro Design, Robert Benaim & Associates, Ryder, Systech Group, Stephens & Co, Seymour Harris, Miller Partnership, Napper Architects, Livemore Partnership, Thomason Partnership, McAndrew Martin Partnership, Derek Hicks & Thew Partnership, Tully De'Ath Consultants, You Project Management.


Top 200 consultants survey results
Are you planning to take on qualified professional full-time staff over the next six months?
  2000 2001
Yes 91% 83%
No 9% 17%
Are you planning to increase staff pay in the next 12 months?
  2000 2001
Yes by 1-2% 4% 3%
Yes by 2-3% 27% 24%
Yes by 3-4% 41% 42%
Yes by >4% 26% 30%
No 2% 1%
How easy is it to recruit professional staff?
Easy 5%
Difficult 64%
Very Difficult 31%
Do you plan to open more offices next year?
  2000 2001
Yes 41% 32%
No 59% 68%
If so, will overseas staff be working on UK projects?
  2000 2001
Yes 21% 18%
No 79% 82%
On average, how long does it take clients to settle invoices?
  2000 2001
30 days 15% 15%
60 days 73% 73%
90 days 9% 11%
longer 3% 1%
Is this faster or slower than last year?
faster 21%
slower 22%
no change 57%
Will you be bidding for work online within two years?
Yes 64%
No 16%
Not sure 20%
What is your annual IT spend?
< £25,000 20%  
£25,000 to £100,000 42%  
> £100,000 38%