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Ron Rambo

Construction Manager vs. Project Manager: Differences & Similarities Between Roles

People often use the terms’ construction manager and project manager interchangeably. However, there are clear differences between these two positions. Let’s take a closer look at both jobs and their tasks and responsibilities.

Read on to Learn:

Construction Manager vs. Project Manager — Different Tasks and Responsibilities

Both jobs are typically involved in building projects, but each position has a completely unique function. When you compare construction management vs. project management, you can find a couple of differences between the two roles. Things such as tasks and responsibilities will be different with each of these roles.

gantt chart for construction project management

Responsibilities of a Project Manager

Project managers are like a jack of all trades when it comes to construction. They will know a lot about construction, but it is not their main field. When you are managing a project, you may be involved in a project before a construction manager is hired. Other responsibilities include: 

  • Making a schedule 
  • Estimate costs 
  • Creating a plan
  • Communicating between all involved parties like engineers, on-site workers, and designers or architects
  • Dividing and delegating tasks between workers

Handling anything that happens on or off the construction site, or that would impact timelines or budgets, is another responsibility that comes with this position. Having a system of organization is a must-haves for any project manager. 

construction project management

What Tasks Do You Have to Do as Project Manager?

Since the role is so diverse, there is not a single day that looks the same. Before the actual construction starts, the project manager will spend most days talking to other professionals so that he or she can make a plan for the entire job and implement important milestones and deadlines.

When the construction phase of the job is ongoing, the main point of contact between all involved parties will be the project manager. When the client has questions, they have to be able to answer them in a good way. Communicating with the construction workers about changes that need to be made or resources needing to be ordered is part of the job description of a project manager as well.

Responsibilities of a Construction Manager

If the building phase is your specialty, the role of a construction manager might be the best solution. The role is more hands-on, as you will be responsible for the construction phase of the complete project. You will be managing subcontractors and checking their work progress. The construction manager must make sure that all tasks are finished on time and that the project manager gets updated on any delays or changes in the progress of these tasks. 

What Tasks Do You Have to Do as Construction Manager?

When you apply for this function, you should know that one of the most important tasks is to inspect other people’s work. You have to check the delivered work of subcontractors to make sure it is up to standard for the project. Furthermore, you have to evaluate if it is safe to continue with the next parts of the project. Other tasks that come with the role are delegating tasks to other workers, and updating the project manager or the client on the progress of the job.

Construction Manager Overview

Now that we answered the question: “What does a construction manager do?” we can talk about how to become one and what type of salary you can expect as a construction manager.

What Salary Can You Expect?

If you are interested in becoming a construction manager, you’re probably also interested in the salary that comes with the job. A construction manager can expect a salary of between $54,000 and $140,000 per year. The amount you will receive depends on the company that you work for and the amount of experience you have in the field.  

Requirements to Become a Construction Manager

Obtaining a position in management for construction is not something you can do overnight. To be considered for one of these positions, you have to meet a couple of requirements. Most companies require you to at least have a bachelor’s degree in construction management or a similar degree. Some companies will also require you to have some on-site experience before hiring.

Overview of Project Managers 

Are you interested in the role of a project manager? Then it is good to know everything from what you can expect from your salary to the requirements to become a project manager.  

A Project Manager’s Salary

Since you will have more fields that you are responsible for and since you will have more tasks as a project manager, you can expect a slightly higher salary than a construction manager. For this role the salary ranges between $60,000 and $141,000 with $95,000 as the average salary. Location and years of experience as a project manager might also affect the salary you can expect!  

Requirements to Become a Project Manager

And, of course, it is not possible to become a project manager overnight. Most companies will require you to hold a bachelor’s degree in architecture, engineering, or construction management. Having hands-on experience is a big plus when you apply for a job as a project manager. To become successful in this function, you must also have experience in working with digital project management solutions, as those are the future of the construction industry.

What are the duties of a construction project manager?

Everything You Need to Know About Construction Manager vs. Project Managers

When comparing construction managers vs. project managers, you can see that the two functions have some overlap, but can be completely separate jobs. However, it is easy to confuse both roles since the tasks and responsibilities overlap with smaller projects. The need for both positions depends on the size of the building project. With smaller projects, the construction project manager’s responsibilities may also include some of the functions of a construction manager. With bigger building projects, there will be a need for both a project manager and construction manager. 

Get Certificates and Experience

For both roles, having experience is a big plus when looking for a new job. That is why you must keep up to date, learn new skills and learn how to work with the most modern technologies in your field. Get a demo today of the industry’s leading-edge project management software, and keep your projects organized and streamlined! 

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