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Firms Cut Staff, Increase Productivity
September 13, 2010

Leaders of national architecture, engineering, and allied design firms are increasing productivity while reducing costs during the current economic recession.

A recent survey by The Zweig Letter demonstrated a pattern of A/E leaders cutting staff as means of reducing firm costs.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the U.S. is now more productive than ever. Nonfarm business sector labor productivity increased at a 2.8% annual rate during the first quarter of 2010 with output rising 4% and hours rising 1.1%.

Architecture and engineering firm leaders have also realized that productivity has increased with fewer staff members.

Edward “Jeb” Snider Jr., president of Manassas, VA, engineering consulting firm Rinker Design Associates, P.C., said he has always run a relatively lean business, but it’s leaner now. “Prior to the recession, we had 105 employees,” he says. “We found the need to cut 15 employees in March of 2008. We made a quick, decisive decision and ran with it. We never dropped a beat without those people. It made us realize we weren’t quite as lean as we thought.”

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