Roles & Responsibilities Involving Contract Construction

The roles and responsibilities outlined in construction contracts typically define the relationship between a project manager acting on behalf of a project owner or client and the company providing the construction management services. Project manager duties include supervising project design, planning and construction. Construction management services include the services of an engineer or architect, construction manager, and lead contractor to oversee the actual building, inspection and completion of the project in accordance with the project timeline, budget and local building codes.

Architecture or Structural Engineer Services

The project architect or engineer provides drawings for all structural-related project components and is the lead contact for advice or recommendations regarding structural issues. She ensures that working drawings are submitted to the project manager in accordance with local and state building codes and also reviews and makes recommendations regarding approval of any construction-related structural changes. The project architect is responsible for collaborating with the project manager regarding review of the project plans and completion of structural work in a timely manner, fixing contract drawing-related errors or omissions or adding special provisions, helping to resolve structural issues or discrepancies, and reviewing and approving working drawings.

Project Manager

The project manager is responsible for clarifying the duties of project team members including the lead designer and contractor, developing a project management plan regarding completion of the construction project, holding regular meetings with project members to discuss the status of the project, monitoring the project budget and identifying issues impacting the delivery of the project plan. Project manager duties include ensuring that surveys of the project site are completed, communicating site boundaries with project team members, ensuring the health and safety of those working on or visiting the site, arranging site security and organising inspections in conjunction with the lead contractor. The project manager also meets with the client to provide an update on project costs, obtain client sign off/approval on design decisions, identify issues impacting the project and provide updates on the expected date of project completion.

Design Consultant

The lead designer is responsible for supervising all construction design elements related to project completion. This includes meeting with the client, project manager or lead contractor both prior to and during construction and creating a design management plan for the client, which is used to guide the overall design process. The lead designer also works with the lead contractor and project manager to ensure that the design plan is being followed, gives advice and recommendations to the client on design decisions and makes amendments to the design plan as necessary, ensuring that the client approves of all design decisions. He also advises the client and project manager of any design-related decisions that impact the budget of the project.

Lead Contractor

The lead contractor is responsible for supervising the project site and construction work in order to ensure that the requirements of the construction contract are delivered according to the plan specifications. The lead contractor provides regular updates to the project manager regarding the progress of construction work, provides direct supervision and scheduling of tradespeople, and is involved in arranging site inspections in conjunction with the project manager.

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About the Author

Serena Cassidy has written reports, policies, and research documents since 2000 on community development and government policy issues, and she has been featured in "CIO Canada." She has a Bachelor of Science in psychology from Saint Mary's University and a Master of Public Administration from Dalhousie University. She currently works as a government policy analyst.

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