As an industry, architecture is currently facing a chronic shortage of qualified technicians – those wonderful people who turn our fag-packet sketches into buildings that will actually stand up – meaning that more and more pressure is being put on architects to produce large packs of drawings as well as the normal role of overseeing work on sites, administration of contracts etc. I’m not complaining per se, but it is meaning that being able to plan work with the facilities at your disposal becomes of upmost importance in order to maintain deadlines.
At the moment I should have a technician to give me a hand, I say should have because that’s the problem. Now I acknowledge that people do get sick from time to time and need time off – even if it’s something that I don’t do myself (much to the concern of some people who wonder what it actually takes to get me to acknowledge that I’m ill). I even accept that some people may have long term illnesses that mean they may need extended periods of time off, both of these extremes are manageable – an odd day just means that you have to do a swift replan and then get on with it, extended time is a case of reshuffling in the office or getting contract staff. Both are a normal part of the working environment.
However, when it becomes easier to count days in than days off and no reason seems to be forthcoming (or pattern) then it becomes more difficult to to manage – especially as things are getting busier and busier each week. Said technician had last week off as part of a planned holiday, was in on Monday and has been off since – this is a typical state of affairs and one that is now beginning to get the better of me. Is it too much to ask for a little dependability?
Ok, rant over, normal service will now resume…