Site Manager / Project Manager / Site Agent

A site manager is the person in charge of all on site operations, working with contractors and subcontractors and ensuring the building contract runs to schedule. A site manager controls all aspects of the site including planning work, arranging delivery of materials and managing a range of subcontractors, and is ultimately responsible for ensuring a contract is delivered on time.

Site managers are employed mainly by building and construction companies, civil engineering firms and contractors. Many local authorities also employ site managers for the refurbishment of council homes and other council owned buildings.

Typical work activities include:

  • ensuring the project runs to schedule and to budget, managing programmes of work, and finding solutions to problems that may cause delays, such as the late arrival of materials;
  • playing a major role in pre-site and on-site meetings with a range of professionals who work to ensure a building contract is successful, including quantity surveyors, contract administrators, site foremen, subcontractors, and the client who has commissioned the work;
  • maintaining strict quality control procedures - this necessitates regular testing of materials, visual inspections of work, and frequent tours of the site;
  • conducting regular site safety checks.
  • Recent graduates are highly unlikely to be appointed in a full site manager role until they have the necessary site experience. However there are plenty of opportunities for assistant site managers or for other roles in the building project team, such as site engineer, that will allow graduates to gain the necessary skills and experience
  • The Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB) offers a qualifications framework for trainee and practising site managers. Progression is normally to contracts management or project management. A number of site managers are self-employed.

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