Studio Director-Global Retail Studio


ContractEstimated: $88,000 - $120,000 a year
Job Location
Corporate Headquarters - Orange, CA
Position Type
Education Level
Salary Range
Travel Percentage
Job Shift
Job Category

Since its founding in 1974, Architect’s Orange (AO) has evolved from a 2 man single office to an award winning full service firm spanning a campus of 5 buildings, an engaged staff of 285+ souls and 9 Studios (Multifamily, Restaurant, Retail, Structured Parking, Commercial, Mixed Use, Hospitality, Landscape and Industrial/Office). Just like Historic Old Towne Orange where we are located, AO is family focused, hardworking and built to last. We value service, our people, a roll up your sleeves attitude and continuous improvement. If you are young in your career, come grow with us. If experienced, come get better with us. There is no one like you, and there is no place like Architects Orange.

Recent Awards (since 2016): 3 Gold Nugget Grand, 11 Gold Nugget Merit, 7 BALA awards and more.

To lead the Architects Orange studio that focuses on large scale and complex international projects from design, through construction, to completion in line with goals set by Architect Orange (AO) while maintaining a high level of client satisfaction.

This is a unique opportunity for a candidate to play a major contributing role in a successful and expanding global retail studio within AO. Also, opportunity for a partner track as the partner in charge of this studio is planning a retirement transition within the next 2 to 3 years. Must be able to travel internationally on average one week per month

Besides requisite project specific duties, the Studio Director takes a Studio wide role in leadership, management responsibilities and technical tasks. In addition, the Studio Director will provide mentorship and guidance to all staff in the Studio and in the absence of the Partner is the highest level decision maker within a Studio. The Studio Director is expected to act in a manner consistent with and make decisions that support the best interests, risk management considerations and protection of Architects Orange as a firm. In addition, the Studio Director must continue to execute on all responsibilities expected of a Director to include:

General Requirements:
Experienced architect able to direct international teams in USA, SE Asia and South America
Must be capable of running a 20 person studio within a 250 plus organization.
Balanced combination of managerial, business development, architectural and technical skills.
Architect with a combination of design and technical expertise with outdoor oriented retail and mixed use environments
Value retail or outlets sector experience is preferred
Desire and ability to travel internationally approximately 1 week per month
Must be able to work within AO’s Orange county offices, or willing to relocate

Duties and Responsibilities:
Project Management:
Plan, coordinate and track actions of AO staff and consultants during the project design, construction document preparation and construction phases of projects under your leadership.
Professionally represent AO and its staff at project related client meetings, team meetings, public hearings and construction meetings during the project
Determine project-related terms and conditions, and seek assistance of other senior staff and partners, as necessary, to establish project fees, development and negotiation of contracts, client interaction, organization and collections during the project process

Project Design:
Meet with Clients and other AO staff in order to establish the bases for developing original and creative solutions to the architectural site and building design aspects of projects
Oversee and direct the preparation of the design drawings, tabulations, documents and other services necessary to meet both contractual and client expectations for designated projects
Develop architectural solutions to create site plans, floor plans, building images, building elevations, materials selections, color selections, and all other aspects of the creative process of developing unique architectural design solutions for each project, based upon client needs, desires and direction
Direct the preparation of detailed drawings, sketches and related documents to accurately represent the project to the client, approving agency, contractor and all other project team staff and consultants
Present the design intent of the project in sufficient detail to allow the subsequent preparation of project construction documents and specifications by AO technical staff under your direction
Personally coordinate, manage, and present the project deliverables as listed above

Project Technical Coordination:
During the design development and construction document preparation processes, coordinate and direct the work of AO staff, foreign architectural resources and consultants and other engineers pursuant to the client’s contract
Exercise independent judgment and decision making based upon technical expertise and experience to meet AO’s standards, and the client needs and expectations on all projects
Exercise judgment, based upon experience, to plan and execute a project’s scope and phases of work within the hours and dollars budgeted during prior contract negotiation
Identify, coordinate and assist senior staff with addressing additional services and requests by the client throughout the duration of the project

Project Construction Administration:
During the Bidding and Construction phases of the project, prepare and attend, or organize the services for project-related needs
Attend project team meetings, as required, on the construction site to direct, ensure and coordinate the construction of the project in conformance with industry standards, the requirements of the project drawings and the expectations of the client
Process, or have processed under direct supervision, contractor shop drawings, requests for information, change orders, extra services, requests for information, progress billings and job site reviews during the course of construction on the project

Team / Overall Office Management:
Provide input on employee performance reviews and hiring/firing practices for inclusion in employee performance appraisals
Participate and direct office or team wide task(s) based upon an area of expertise or interest
Direct periodic team wide project scheduling meetings to present projected staff needs, determine staff availability, and schedule staff resources to meet individual project needs
Attend yearly AO Senior Staff Planning and/or Management Conferences

Project / Team Financial Management:
Based upon project expertise and experience, direct the development of project budgets and financial goals for the project
Monitor and direct project team staff in order to ensure project performance goals are met, hours estimates are documented, extra services are identified, and collections activities are addressed, as needed
Review project billing drafts and coordinate invoice preparation with accounting staff

Team / Office Marketing and Promotions:
Participate and professionally represent AO in periodic marketing events to promote the firm’s capabilities, introduce the firm to new clients and present information at trade shows and related events
Coordinate and assist the marketing department in the preparation of marketing material, capabilities brochures, direct mailers and other lead generation activities
Prepare in conjunction with other senior staff, client and consultant contracts, project proposal and requests for extra services
Duties and responsibilities may be added, deleted, modified or changed at any time at the company’s discretion. Changes may be made formally, informally either verbally or in writing

Bachelor’s degree from 4-year college or university, or 3-5 years related experience/training; or equivalent combination of education and experience is preferred
At least 10 years of experience, with 5 or more being focused on large scale outdoor oriented retail or mixed use project types
Architectural license, preferred
Ability to read, analyze, and interpret documents such as contracts, general business periodicals, professional journals, technical procedures, or governmental regulations
Technical understanding of architectural drawings and specifications
Ability to write reports, business correspondence
Ability to effectively present information and respond to questions from groups of managers, clients, customers and the general public
General knowledge of general office business computer systems and software

We offer all the benefits of a big firm, with all the human connection of a small one. You will never be a number at AO. Come join our community.

Partial list of benefits:
Full Suite of Medical, Dental, Life & Supplemental Insurance
Ongoing Education and Exam Reimbursement
Most Medical Plans fully paid for employee only coverage
Company Paid Basic Life Insurance & Long Term Disability
Retirement Plan, Health Savings and Flexible Spending Accounts
Overtime Compensation for Hourly Employees
Paid Vacation, Holidays and Sick Time
Flexible Schedule
Rail Station one block from campus