EJCDC logo
The Engineers Joint Contract Documents Committee (EJCDC®) released the EJCDC® 2021 Construction Manager as Advisor Series. This series is completely new to EJCDC.  The EJCDC® 2021 Construction Manager as Advisor Series (CM as Advisor Series) is intended for projects in which the Owner’s primary representative during construction will be the Construction Manager as Advisor (CM).  As such the CM as Advisor Series is an alternative to the use of the EJCDC Construction Series, in which the Engineer that prepared the design subsequently serves as the Owner’s construction contract administrator.  The CM as Advisor Series is comprised of contract documents, administrative forms, bonds, bidding and procurement documents.

The most common and traditional framework for design-bid-build project delivery is one in which the design professional (engineer or architect) provides not only design services but also construction contract administration services as the owner’s primary representative during construction. The new CM as Advisor Series serves the needs of projects in which the design professional focuses on core design and technical services—including engineering services that are required during the construction phase, such as technical review of shop drawings—while a construction manager assists the owner with administrative tasks ranging from budgeting to scheduling to quality management.

Several factors inspired EJCDC’s development of the CM as Advisor set of documents:

  • First and foremost, many infrastructure projects are very complex, often involving multiple construction contracts over a period of years, creating the need for highly specialized administrative services provided by construction management professionals.
  • Some public owners are required by local rules to use a third-party (other than the engineer of record) to administer construction contracts, while other owners prefer the third-party approach as standard operating policy.
  • In other cases, the expertise that a construction manager can bring to the project during the pre-construction phase, particularly with respect to scheduling, cost estimating, value engineering, and procurement, is a compelling factor.
  • Some project owners conduct construction contract administration using internal construction management teams. When such is the case, the define delineation of services and responsibilities in the EJCDC CM as Advisor Series will be useful as a starting point in setting up appropriate administrative procedures and establishing the construction contracts, and in crafting the scope of the engineer of record’s construction-phase services.

At the heart of the CM as Advisor Series is EJCDC CMA-501 (2021), Agreement between Owner and Construction Manager as Advisor. This agreement is based on standard professional services contract principles, and addresses the schedule for rendering services, insurance and indemnification, the standard of care, and the scope of CM’s services. The scope is set out in a comprehensive exhibit that is coordinated with the scope of Engineer’s services, to avoid duplication of effort.

Another key document in the new CM as Advisor Series is EJCDC E-500 (CMA), Agreement between Owner and Engineer for Professional Services (when Owner retains a Construction Manager as Advisor). The terms and conditions of this specialized document closely track those of the traditional E-500; however, E-500 (CMA) notably contains a modified scope of services that highlights coordinated Engineer-CM activities during the final design phase (for example, a cooperative approach to developing Division 01 administrative specifications) and the primary administrative role of the CM during the construction phase, while at the same time preserving the Engineer’s control over design and technical issues throughout the project.

Most of the remainder of the 2021 CM as Advisor Series documents are modeled on counterpart documents in the EJCDC Construction Series, with modifications made to accommodate the role of the CM as Advisor during the bidding/procurement process and the construction phase. For example, EJCDC’s flagship Standard General Conditions document, C 700 (2018), has been modified for CM as Advisor and published as CMA-700, Standard General Conditions of the Construction Contract—Construction Manager as Advisor Series.

Finally, purchasers of the CM as Advisor series will receive copies of several standard C Series bond forms that did not require modification for the CM as Advisor process.

EJCDC documents available online for purchase