After four months in negative territory, the RIBA Future Trends Workload Index rose to +3 in July, from –17 in June.
Nearly a third (31%) of practices anticipate a workload increase, 42% expect workload to remain the same and 28% expect a decrease.
The private housing sector rose significantly to +17 (from -3 in June), the commercial sector rose to -15 (from -32), the community sector to -14 (from -19) and the public sector to -4 (from -12).
RIBA Head of Economic Research and Analysis, Adrian Malleson, said: “While July’s findings might show the first glimpse of positivity we’ve seen for a while – with practices seeing a specific increase in private residential enquiries as home working continues – architects still face a particularly challenging market.
“For some, their current workloads mainly consist of pre-pandemic commissions and the source of future work is uncertain.
“As the UK enters its first recession in 11 years, we can expect further caution from clients to commit to new projects, and confidence in future workloads may be affected.”