Architectural Career: Which Programs Should I Know to Find a Job?

Architecture is one of humanity’s oldest professions. We can observe our adaptation with our changing needs throughout the ages while examining the best architectural works. Architecture is the most up-to-date state of knowledge that dates back thousands of years. And we cannot say that we use traditional methods in architecture that much anymore.

In this technology age, we need other tools to build more vital, more extensive, and more pushing structures. Today, every architecture student starts to learn some programs from the first years of their education. These programs were developed specifically for modelling and building design. So, what are the most frequently used programs among all? What architectural CAD programs do you need to master for a promising career? All in the rest of the article!


There is no architectural project without a plan. For this reason, AutoCAD is the best starting point for an architecture student. AutoCAD is a software that allows you to make two and three-dimensional modellings. However, the three-dimensional modeling feature’s is rarely used in the architectural sector.

Architects commonly use AutoCAD for creating and editing plans. Besides, architecture students often prepare their sheets here. Moreover, this is not just an architectural program. A wide range of professions, from engineering to technical drawing, can make two-dimensional drawings with AutoCAD.


The first step of three-dimensional modelling in architectural education is SketchUp. Its interface is simple and quick to get used to, and it is an easy-to-try program. It is used for three-dimensional modelling at the basic level. It can work with the V-ray rendering engine. You can get realistic rendering images by adding light, color, texture, and brightness adjustment to your designs.

Older versions do not allow much flexibility in design. However, the 2018 and later versions are quite advanced. SketchUp can help you to do very successful work with these features. Still, it is not as widely used as 3Ds Max in architecture.

3Ds Max

3Ds Max is the first program that comes to mind when you think about architectural modeling and rendering. It also works in conjunction with the V-rail. However, the render interface is different from SketchUp. It has very advanced tools that allow you to do all kinds of operations on the model. It also provides a high degree of customization. This program is a handy feature, as many professions use 3Ds Max.

It is easy to manage models with 3Ds Max. Also, you can obtain a photo-realistic level, very high-resolution renderings. That’s why nearly all large architectural companies use 3Ds Max.


It helps not only architectural design but also helps engineering design. You can make both two-dimensional and three-dimensional drawings. Revit has a variety of features to compete with AutoCAD in terms of drawing plans.

After drawing the plan, Revit creates the sections by itself. You can add elements such as reinforcement, door, window to the drawing through the advanced library. Revit shows its cross-section and view in a clear way. This function makes your project easier to read. Such features save Revit users a lot of time in drawing plans.

You can also use Revit to create static plans, electrical plans, and plumbing plans. There is even a cloud system you can utilize to make sure the building statics are correct.

Bonus: Adobe Photoshop

Although it is not an architectural drawing program, Photoshop is one of the programs that every architect should know. Because in most job adverts, Photoshop knowledge a requirement for architects. You can use this program for editing render photos. Also, Photoshop’s advanced tools will be useful when editing project visuals.

You can create much more creative works in architectural project sheet design than AutoCad. This feature makes Photoshop the favorite of architecture students.

MS Office Programs

MS Office programs are indispensable for every sector today. You are expected to master MS Office programs regardless of what you do. It is essential to have an idea about each, especially Office Word and Excel.

Office Word will assist you in all kinds of text creation and editing. You can create official documents such as petitions with Office Word.

Excel, on the other hand, is frequently used in creating lists of quantities. You will also need Excel often for cost calculation. For all these reasons, employers expect a full command of MS Office programs from their employees.

Adobe Illustrator

Illustrator is a software that is mostly used by graphic designers. It allows you to draw freehand. (CC version offers more features than C6.) As the name suggests, it is used for creating illustrations. Also, graphic designers and advertisers use this program to design logos. It can also work for creating mock-ups.

It can be useful for creating three-dimensional sketches that promote the project. Although it is not as important as Photoshop, important architecture companies may require Adobe Illustrator knowledge.

Abobe InDesign

Adobe InDesign is a multi-page editing program used in printing. It helps one to arrange the pages of designs such as magazines and books to be printed. Thus, it becomes possible to control everything at the same time and interfere with the pages. Many companies require InDesign knowledge from architects or interior designers.


Lumion is a rendering engine, and you will not use it as often as a V-rail because the working principles are very different. V-Ray works integrated with the modeling program used. So you can make changes in your design during rendering. However, Lumion is not a modeling program. You upload the model you created with 3Ds Max or SketchUp to Lumion. Then it is not possible to edit this model again in Lumion.

You can only make changes in light and atmosphere. Lumion detects the layers in the model you are loading. So you can attach materials to the relevant layers.

Lumion is used for video features rather than rendering features. You can use Lumion to create animations that may promote your project. You can create realistic animations with ready-made human models, sound, and natural effects.


Although it is not a program, it will be beneficial to know how to use Google Drive. You can send files to multiple people at the same time in this cloud system. You can ensure that everyone is aware of the arrangements you make. In short, it is a Google plugin that will speed up your work for the business environment. You can save a respectable amount of time by using it actively.

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