Major Roles on a Construction Project

By: RK Mechanical

Large-scale construction requires collaboration across numerous disciplines. It’s rare to find a contractor who has the capability to perform multiple trades in-house. For the successful execution of a project, effective planning is essential. From project conception to completion, construction teams must consider zoning, scheduling, budgeting, bidding, safety, transportation of materials, logistics and much more.

Trade-Specific Roles and Responsibilities

The architect designs and develops construction drawings including structural, electrical and mechanical requirements, interior design and lighting. Their final drawings are detailed and include specifications and materials for a construction manager to estimate the total cost of the project. During construction, they monitor work and submit new drawings if changes are made. They also prepare final acceptance documents at the completion of the project.

Construction engineers direct construction projects. They handle everything from the design of the construction project to making sure that everything is going as planned on-site.

General contractors are responsible for providing all of the necessary material, equipment, labor and services for the construction of the project. They typically hire special trade contractors to perform all or some of the work.

Mechanical contractors* install and maintain technologically advanced and energy-efficient HVAC, refrigeration, plumbing and piping systems. The following trades fall under mechanical contracting:

Plumbing: Plumbers install and maintain pipes and mechanical systems for water supply, gas, drainage, sewerage and HVAC systems.

Piping: Pipefitters fabricate, assemble, maintain and repair large high-pressure piping systems.

Sheet Metal: Sheet metal workers install HVAC ductwork and related work.

Construction laborers perform a variety of tasks from erecting and restoring structures, maintaining stormwater, drainage and sewerage systems to excavating, clearing and leveling sites. Laborers are skilled workers who are proficient with pneumatic tools, hand tools, blasting and smaller heavy equipment.

Carpenters and joiners construct, erect, install and renovate structures and fixtures made of wood, plywood, wallboard and other materials and cut, shape and fit the parts to form structures and fittings.

Electricians* specialize in electrical wiring of buildings and equipment. They design, assemble, install, test, diagnose and maintain electrical systems and equipment.

Glaziers are responsible for measuring, cutting, installing and removing glass for windows, doors, mirrors, shower doors, skylights, display cases, facades, interior walls, ceilings, tabletops and more.

Heavy equipment operators operate heavy machinery such as cranes, hoists, lifts and winches to lift, move and place materials, equipment and people onto building and construction sites.

Insulation installers are responsible for all insulating materials, protective coverings, coatings and finishes to mechanical systems.

Ironworkers* fabricate and erect structural steel and other metals as well as repair metal products using various welding techniques. They also position and secure reinforcing bars and mesh which are used to reinforce concrete.

Landscapers create or renovate outdoor spaces by planting lawns, flowers, trees and shrubs. They also construct hard landscaping features such as paths, patios and decks.

Masons are skilled in brick laying and concrete finishing which includes pouring and finishes concrete for floors, stairs, ramps, footpaths, bridges and more.

Painters are responsible for the painting and decorating of buildings which includes the application of paint, varnish or wallpaper to protect and decorate surfaces of structures.

Plasterers apply plaster and fix partitions, suspended ceilings, fire rating systems, acoustic tiles and apply decorative and protective coverings of plaster, cement and similar materials to the interiors and exteriors of structures.

Roofers specialize in roof construction including the application of materials such as tiles, sheets and shingles that weatherproof buildings.

Tilers lay various types of tiles on external and internal surfaces, such as walls and floors, to provide protective and decorative finishes.

With the large number of diverse trades that may be involved in a construction project, establishing collaboration is particularly important. All large commercial projects are likely to involve the coordination of complex information, procedures and systems.

RK gives construction, commercial and industrial customers a reliable, single source for mechanical and electrical contracting, custom manufacturing, steel fabrication, prefabricated buildings, facilities and equipment maintenance and water treatment solutions. For more information about what RK can do for your next construction project, contact

*RK has professionals who specialize in these fields that are available to collaborate with you on your next construction project.