The New Engineering Contract


NEC3 is the third edition of The New Engineering Contract (NEC), this edition was amended in the year 2006 (June). NEC is a dignified system that was formed by Institution of Civil Engineers and it provides a guide in drafting of civil engineering as well as the construction documents aimed at acquiring tenders, granting and managing contracts (Eggleston 2006).  They provide a legal definition of the duties and tasks of the Employers and Contractors in both the contract data part one (Employer's data) and part two (Contractor's data), generally known as the work information. Though NEC is a family of standard contracts that is internationally recognized, it is mainly used in United Kingdom as well as other countries such as South Africa and New Zealand.  

Parties likely to be involved in a NEC3 Engineering and Construction Contract (ECC)

NEC3 Engineering and Contraction Contract involve the contract featuring the contractor and the employer. The individuals involved include; the employer, the contractor, Project Manager, Supervisor, Sub contractor, adjudicator and designers. The ECC provides the roles and responsibilities of all the above parties except the designers (Eggleston 2006). It should be noted that both the employer and the contract have designers whose role is assumed though not featured in the contract. The role of the Architect or Engineer (Supervisor) in some forms is distributed to the Adjudicator, Project Manager, Employer's Designer and Supervisor.

 Roles, responsibilities and Lines of communication

The project manager

This person is appointed by the employer and can be one of his employees or an outsider. He is the person who manages the contract on behalf of the employer to see that the objectives of the employer are achieved (Eggleston 2006). In the line of communication, he advises the employer on costs and time estimates, procurement design, benefits of alternative design, and making a choice for best contract strategy.


Employer's designers many be several and they are coordinated by a lead designer who as well as the others are appointed by the employer. These are in charge of developing designs that will lead to accomplishment of the objectives of the employer. For example in a 'design and construct' type of a contract, it is the role of an Employer's designer to provide the performance specification, design standards as well as materials to be included in the works information.

The adjudicator

This person is appointed by both the Employer and the Contractor. The adjudicator being neutral is charged with the responsibility of solving any dispute that may arise during the contract period and acts within specified time limits.

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The supervisor

This is one of the staff members of the Employer or an outsider that is appointed by the employer. The roles of a supervisor are defined in the ECC based on the decisions and actions that they are supposed to take. The supervisor ensures that the construction is carried out as stipulated in the contract.

Civil engineering professionals

These professionals can be represented by a single person who is the construction engineer and this is the person who oversees the entire project, provides professional guidelines and co-ordinates all the builders and other workers in a contract. They act in the same capacity as the project manager.

The construction engineer

This is the person who plans and directs the construction project. They conduct surveys, do a lot of research, analyze results, plan the construction and administer its progress up to the completion. It is also the duty of the construction engineer to provide all the necessary information to the relevant parties as well as the public. This is necessary as it keeps the said individuals updated on all information concerning the construction prior, during and after its completion. This individual is the one who advises the workers on what to do.

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There are some specific duties that a construction Engineer must fulfill. They conduct surveys; provide reports and statements on the environment on the project. They prepare charts, tables and plans giving the fine details of the project. They then discuss these with the other parties such as the state officials, builders and environmental officers. They conduct various site tests, grading and even determination of construction costs. They provide technical advice to all parties involved in the project. Throughout the project, they are the persons to be consulted and therefore they play a role of jack of all trades.

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