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Senior Contract Administrator

Senior Contract Administrators are in high demand right now (Qtr 2 2021_22) due to the current lack of available applicants in the commercial construction sector. With Victoria closed for the past 18 months to 2 years, and the skepticism and concern with changing employers right now holding back people who may have previously considered a move, it’s made the market white hot for Senior Contract Administrators .

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Senior Contract Administrator Career Pathways

You may be a ‘career’ Senior Contract Administrator who enjoys your job so much you’re happy to continue being one for your career lifetime. You’re not bound by a particular industry or tier level and may find growth through changing sectors or project value experience.
If you’re a Senior Contract Administrator who’s looking for career advancement, your options are Contracts Manager, Commercial Manager or Commercial Director. To make the move into these types of roles, you must be willing to take on leadership roles, including management of staff and multiple projects or larger, more complex projects.
Commercial Manager and Commercial Director roles are primarily available with high Tier 1 and 2 builders. There’s also another strategic Commercial Manager role which corporate based and involves  strategic procurement & contracts and sets all policy and process for all contract matters across the business. A dotted line reporting structure has Contract Administrators and Senior Contract Administrators reporting in to this manager along with reporting to the Project Manager.
Minimum 15-20 years construction experience is required before taking the next step into Commercial Manager and Commercial Director roles.

How to become a Senior Contract Administrator

The usual pathway into a Senior Contract Administrator role is promotion from a Contract Administrator role, with minimum 5 years experience. Some employers also have a hybrid Project Coordinator/Contract Administrator role that would allow you to move from Project Coordinator/Engineer role direct to Senior Contract Administrator but again you will require a minimum 5 years experience on average in that role.
When it comes to Construction Senior Contract Administrator recruitment, a degree in Construction Management, Engineering, Economics, Quantity Surveying, Law, Commerce or equivalent is essential.

What does a Senior Construction Contract Administrator do?

A Senior Contract Administrator manages the contract between their employer and the building contractor. They are usually the first point of contact between the company and any external parties it does business with.
Senior Contract Administrators collaborate with project managers, architects and other professionals to ensure the project has all the resources it needs to meet its goals.
Should you secure a Senior Contract Administrator job in construction, you will be responsible for all paperwork associated with contracts, projects and services provided. You’ll also be required to resolve any queries or issues that may arise concerning these matters, usually with the help of an Contract Administrator.
Given the importance of the Senior Contract Administrator’s role in the company, there are many responsibilities to manage, including:

  • Drafting scopes of works and tender packages to accompany requests for quotations issued to subcontractors for various projects
  • Conducting initial investigations with subcontractors to clarify the organisation’s conditions relating to contracts for prospective projects
  • Managing and driving the review process to ensure the implementation of all subcontractors within the required time frame and budget
  • Maintaining a register of subcontractors
  • Operating and maintaining commercial and contract systems, including Project Costs Reporting (PCR), Asset Registers, Commercial Pack database and Contract Sum
  • Minimising all subcontractor variation claims and elimination of claims, where possible
  • Ensuring cost forecasting for allocated subcontracts and cost codes are accurately maintained, as well as identifying any cost issues and keeping project management teams notified of these issues
  • Interpreting specifications and drawings in order to understand scope of works for the project at both Head Contract and Sub Contract scope level
  • Identifying and quantifying Head Contracts
  • Ensuring subcontractors are code compliant at all times

Other Senior Contract Administrator construction jobs might include undertaking general business administration; assessing and managing potential commercial and contractual risks associated with the delivery and execution of projects; and dealing with progress claims and disputed claims by subcontractors.

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