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Principal Designer

Principal designers manage risk prevention during the pre-construction phase of a project.

The Role

  • Making appropriate design decisions during the pre-construction phase to ensure a project is delivered effectively
  • Securing the health and safety of those affected by the work on projects
  • Making Clients aware of their duties
  • Collating pre-construction information
  • Identifying how any information gaps will be resolved in a timely manner to ensure sufficient consideration of health and safety issues. 
  • Carrying out H&S specific design reviews throughout the design and construction phases of a project
  • Embedded in the project team and have sufficient knowledge to influence the project design


  • Newly trained Principal Designers can earn in the region of £30,000 - £35,000
  • Trained with experience, Principal Designers can earn in the region of £35,000 - £45,000
  • Senior Principal Designers can earn in the region of £45,000 - £65,000

Salaries depend on location, employer and level of responsibility, and salaries and career options can improve with relevant chartered status. 

Qualifications and Training

A degree in a relevant field may be one route to becoming a principal designer. Alternatively, combining work with part-time study towards industry-recognised qualifications, such as those delivered by the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH), offers another.

Once established in a building design or suitable construction role, specific training in Construction Design and Management Regulations is essential for the role of principal designer.

Next Steps


Check out the latest Principal Designer vacancies: 

As these are external websites, the number of job vacancies related to your preferred job role may vary. 

Check daily to see new opportunities as they are posted!

Find out more

For information on job roles in Scotland please visit the Skills Development Scotland website My World of Work.

Take our Ultimate Quiz to find out which role is right for you.

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