What are Employer’s Agents?
In construction, under a design and build Contract an Employer’s Agent (EA) is appointed by the Client (employer) to represent them and their interests pre and post Contract. This role can be fulfilled by the architect, project manager or cost consultant. Alternatively, the client can appoint an in-house project manager from their own company or an independent consultant to be their Employer’s Agent.
Most of the responsibilities of an Employer’s Agent will begin after a construction contract is awarded. However, they may also carry out tasks on the client’s behalf before the contract is awarded and will provide input on processes and procedures that will be incorporated within the Contract.
The Role of an Employer’s Agent
The client employs an Employer’s Agent (EA) for two key reasons:
- To manage the delivery of a project, ensuring that all actions described in the project’s appointment documents and Contract are successfully addressed and completed. These duties include the receipt and issue of the following as summarised below:
- requests or
- To act as a construction professional and advise the Client by drawing on this industry knowledge providing a balanced and unbiased view.
Did you know? According to the 2015 National Construction Contracts and Law Survey, almost half of those surveyed (44%) reported having to deal with at least one dispute around their contract in the past year. The biggest cause of these disputes is poor contract management.
Hiring a skilled EA can prevent disputes and legal complications from arising during the post Contract phase of works.
The Responsibilities of an Employer’s Agent
Before the contract is awarded, the Employer’s Agent may be responsible for the following:
- Co-ordinating the tender and the novation of the consultants involved
- Collating Contract documents to be executed
- Putting change control and reporting procedures in place
After the Contract is awarded, the Employer’s Agent will be required to do the following:
- Manage change control procedures and instructing agreed changes as required
- Co-ordinate the review of design information provided by the contractor (contractors proposals) and attain Client’s approval.
- Review the progress of the work against the Contract programme
- Prepare reports for the Client summarising the current position of cost and programme
- Certify payments and consider, review and agree the outcome of any claims
- Monitor commissioning and inspections
- Certify Practical Completion
- Assist in the prevention or settlement of any disputes
- Notify the contractor of any defects
- Assist in agreeing and certifying the final account
- Conclude the rectification period and issue the notice of completion of making good.
Find an Employer’s Agent in the UK
TowerEight has a skilled team that provides expert contract administration and Employer’s Agent services. They currently administer over £1.7bn of construction Contracts in the UK and Europe, helping to mitigate the risks that come with managing the contractual processes.