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6 recruitment agencies in architecture and interior design

Take a look at six different organisations working to match the right people with the right jobs – or create new ones for them.

6 recruitment agencies in architecture and interior design

(L-R) - Nuala Collins, Ben Peake, Julie Niass, Christina Banks, Julia English and Shaun Carter from Carter Williamson.

Finding the right person for the job or finding the right job for your career are aspects to the architecture and design world that sit slightly below the radar. In our industry, some architects don’t want their practice named when looking for an employee and many job-seekers don’t want their current employer to know they are looking elsewhere. Secrecy and discretion can become paramount in an industry driven by competition. Enter the recruitment agency, which effectively acts as match maker to align skill set with position in a discrete and professional manner.

Their role, however, is more intimate than that, with job creation a bespoke function of recruitment agencies that few know about. In this scenario, a candidate may be ringing all the bells for a premium position, but not quite fit the jobs the agency currently has on the books. Not wanting to lose the candidate to another agency, the recruiter works with its clients to create an opportunity. Agencies also work with candidates to tweak their skill set through short-term roles that gives the experience needed for greater opportunities.

Left to right, Mathew van Kooy, Jasmin Williamson, James Loder, Meaghan Dwyer, John Wardle of John Wardle Architects.

Recruitment agencies also take on the role of career management: recruiting in the first instance to one position, then placing into more advanced roles either with the same company or another, as their experience grows. As such, there is a relationship between recruiter and candidate that can span entire careers. Correlating this relationship is the ongoing bond between business and recruiter with these partnerships likewise spanning decades.

Concurrently social platforms that provide information and connecting hubs are emerging as a new way to find candidates and positions. These do not offer the recruitment style career nurturing, but they do provide networking opportunities and vital information.

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Some of the Indesign team.

If you are looking for a new role or a new employee, these are some of the agencies and platforms operating in Australia. Many represent national and international companies, as well as multinationals. If you are looking for a new job, read through the websites, pick up some tips and approach the firm you think will work best for your current skill set, but be prepared to be jettisoned into a sharp learning curve as your CV, presentation and skill set are scrutinised and tweaked.

Bloomfield Tremayne &P.

This firm has been working in Australia (offices in Sydney and Melbourne) for the past 30 years, with a good mix of national and multinational clients. With affiliates in London, New Zealand and South Africa, BTP has a broad reach and sound reputation: “Sometimes we will have the perfect role available, other times we’ll tailor a specific search. In all instances, you will have complete control of your career,” says Jamie Keay of Bloomfield Tremayne&P, Sydney office.

Working across all aspects of the built environment, BTP works with developers and construction companies as well as architects and interior designers. “We work hard to develop long-term, meaningful relationships with both our candidates and clients, and always try to take the time understand the specific requirements of both. Sometimes our clients need immediate resources, just like some candidates might want some short-term contract work; in other instances, we will develop a strategic approach aimed to build businesses and careers. Above all, we really love what we do, the industry itself and the people in it,” says Keay.

Bespoke Carers

National, international and multinational clients give this agency significant reach and a highly finessed placement ability. Established in 2004, Bespoke Careers is a specialist recruitment agency dedicated to connecting job-seekers to employers in architecture and design. With a global database of over 140,000 pre-screened candidates, they recruit for clients ranging from top-tier practices to one-man bands across Sydney, Melbourne and their new Brisbane location, alongside their global offices in London, New York, Los Angeles and Austin. At present there are 560 positions listed on their site for roles within architecture, interior design, business support, products, strategic appointments, landscaping, BIM and graphics – including both permanent and contract opportunities.

“Bespoke Careers consultants are trained in the industry they recruit for – with the majority being ex-industry professionals. This means that not only are we passionate about design and the profession we work with, but we have a thorough understanding of what is required to help job-seekers and employers find the right match for their team and next step in their career.

“Our team thrive on contributing to the wider architecture and design community, and are lucky to be located in some of the world’s most creative cities,” says Krista Shearer, Managing Director Bespoke, Sydney office.

As a candidate, their website is well worth visiting for tips on negotiating salary, first impressions, CV and portfolio advice, career transitions, and entering the world of work post-university through their graduate programme. For employers, the current key articles outline the need for employee attracting perks, while their global salary guide offers insight into salary benchmarking in the industry.

Design and Build Recruitment

Working Australia-wide across architecture and design, construction, business support, manufacturing and engineering, this is another industry heavy-hitter with a solid reputation. With over 20 years of recruitment experience, each consultant is a specialist in their area, with ongoing training to continue their development. Moreover, it takes a holistic approach to recruitment.

“As individuals, we are across the entire recruitment process, from meeting the clients and candidates, providing honest communication, focus, feedback and care. We maintain the relationships throughout the hiring process and beyond, with a heavy focus on our pre-care and after-care procedure,” says Charlie Jones, D&B Consultant.

Design and Build has teamed up with ASX-listed firms as the recruitment partner for several major projects across Australia, as well as continuously supporting local charities and workplace equality. Their website offers insights to ongoing trends, salary guides and job seeker advice.


Hays has been in the recruiting business for more than 50 years across 32 countries. One of the key differentiators is the breadth and depth of Hays’ network, with 37 offices across Australia in every state and territory. “We work with a broad network of architectural practices and employers to source the staff they need,” says Adam Shapley, Managing Director of Technical Recruitment at Hays.

“We’re hugely passionate about the work we do and always have a comprehensive range of architecture jobs available.” For clients, it’s Hays’ depth of expertise and technical understanding that helps them bring the right person to each job. “Our local market knowledge and accurate response ensures we deliver real results,” says Shapley. Among their many assets is a free online learning platform for candidates and a global portal for those arriving or returning to Australia. Effectively it allows candidates to be seen (and hopefully employed) by the industry prior to arrival.  


Taking a really different approach, CO-architecture in not a recruiter, but has a simple online job-post site that connects candidates to businesses in a single hub. It also has a search that allows potential homeowners to find architects: “We’re built by industry, for industry. The idea behind ‘CO’ is to bring everything together in one hub – design professionals, job opportunities, employers, clients, projects, networking and design inspo – all those great things into one place to build a project, scale, or find that next career move,” says Kevin Mitchem, CO-Architecture founder.

What sets it even further apart, though, is the function allowing candidates to search particular architectural firms for positions. “At the core of our platform is a community of over 8000 users who’ve shaped and co-designed all our features. The platform serves as a bridge, connecting and empowering the largest network of independent and job-seeking design professionals with businesses or property developers across Australia. We facilitate meaningful connections and collaborations, making it easier for you to discover your next big opportunity,” adds Mitchem.

Woods Bagot, for example, is listed with a short summary of the company and four new positions available. HASSELL, Foolscap Studio, Corben Architects and SPH are all currently listed, and this is the site for opportunities at WOWOWA, Tribe Studio and See Design Studio to name just a few of its exceptional portfolio.

Careers Indesign

The broad-reaching Careers Indesign is another online hub, but stretching well beyond the immediate architecture and interior design world. With access to some of the more interesting design houses such as Tate, Milliken, Jardan, Zenith and DesignedByThem, this is the best option for designers and design enthusiasts looking to get into the business or make a shift in their career.

“Setting us apart is our longstanding place in the design community with thousands of contacts that come to us when looking for the right person to fill a particular role in the design industry. We’re upfront about which company is looking for a candidate and create a space for those seeking a change to engage directly with the company. It’s simple, with no middle man, and lets everyone get on with working in the design industry they love,” says Alice Blackwood.  

Dedicated to connecting the right professionals to the right positions, Careers Indesign has played an integral role in building teams in the architecture and design community, as Blackwood explains: “We’ve got the connections, so whether your posting a position or hunting for your dream job, your future starts with us.”

More on jobs: Employee ownership across the design industry

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