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What’s a Commercial Contractor Versus a Sub-Contractor?

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It can be tricky to understand who’s who in the commercial construction process. Sure, you might understand that the architectural design team does a different job from the construction project management, but what about two roles that almost share the same name: commercial contractor versus a subcontractor?

While they may sound similar, they play two very different roles, and understanding these roles is critical to your build’s success. Miller Architects & Builders, Saint Cloud providers of commercial construction management and architectural design services, differentiates the two below.

The Role of the Commercial Contractor

That’s us! A commercial contractor, in terms of construction, is a company that you hire to, essentially, manage and direct the construction of your building.  This entity serves as a liaison between the client and the rest of the construction team, making sure everything goes smoothly from start to finish and, ultimately, taking responsibility for the client’s build’s success.

They report to you and focus on the big-picture, project-shaping issues. Budgeting and project timelines are, for example, major concerns.

The Role of Subcontractors

If a commercial contractor is going to get the job done, they’re going to need manpower, and it’s this manpower that subcontractors provide. From windows to electricity general construction work, these specialists bring their unique skills to the table to ensure a build’s ultimate success, though they don’t oversee it to the extent that your commercial contractor might.

They report to your commercial contractor, not you, on the smaller details of the project—in other words, the niche that they handle.

The Role of Each in a Construction Project

Your subcontractors will never be hired to manage a commercial construction project, but depending on the management style you select, you may be responsible for hiring them! Traditional construction project management leaves hiring and legal contracts to the building’s owner, while at-risk construction project management leaves finding the right subcontractor in the hands of the management team.

To do the hiring yourself or have you construction project management team handle it? Both have their advantages. Check out our page on commercial construction management for more information.

Miller Architects & Builders: Here to Help you Make Decisions That Are Right for Your Project

Our Saint Cloud team is ready to meet you and see what we can do for your building dreams. If you’re ready to invest in your company’s future today, give our office a call at 320-251-4109.