Roles of professional consultants—construction projects

The following Construction practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Roles of professional consultants—construction projects
  • Architect
  • Structural or civil engineer
  • Building services engineer
  • Quantity surveyor or cost consultant (QS)
  • Project manager or employer's agent
  • Other consultants
  • CDM coordinator (historic)

Roles of professional consultants—construction projects

On construction projects there may be a large number of professional consultants involved, all carrying out separate roles. The number of consultants depends on the size of the project and who appoints them will depend on the type of procurement. However, for most projects, the key consultants remain the same. This Practice Note explains what each of the key consultants does and highlights their main duties.

For an explanation of the roles of the parties typically involved in a construction project (including the consultants but also the employer, contractor and sub-contractor), see Practice Note: Parties in a construction project.

For an illustration of the contract structure of a typical construction project, and the way that the consultants fit into it, see: Structure of a development project—diagram.


The architect is usually the most important, or lead, consultant on a building project (as opposed to an engineering project). The architect is usually the consultant that an employer will engage first in respect of a project so that it can provide initial design advice and prepare a feasibility study for the proposed development. The architect is the professional who will prepare the concept and detailed design for a project and also, on traditional procurement schemes, it will manage the construction of a project for an employer as the contract administrator. The management role will involve issuing

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