In the world of construction, nothing gets done without a contract. Subcontractors, change orders, and bids all need a signed contract, and that means we need someone to keep track of all the contracts we have coming in and out of our office. This is where Becky Manasco comes in. As our contract administrator, she makes sure we dot our i’s and cross our t’s before we sign anything.
What Does a Contract Administrator Do?
As the name implies, contract administrators facilitate contracts between Cowen, our subcontractors, and clients. They are needed at almost every stage of the construction process to ensure all contracts are formatted correctly, and to manage the various revisions a contract can go through during the negotiation and bidding process.
Once we’ve reached an agreement with the client, contract administrators then work with all the subcontractors that will be on the job site to ensure everyone has the necessary paperwork before they start working. If any change orders come from the client or architect, it needs to be documented, signed, and communicated to the crew and subcontractors.
After the building phase is complete, the contract administrator will then assume the role of facilitating warranty claims. If any issues that are covered by the contract arise with the building during the warranty phase (generally a year after construction is complete) the owner will file a warranty request and the contract administrator will then coordinate with the subcontractor or project manager to resolve the issue.
Characteristics of a Good Contract Administrator
With contracts constantly coming in from bids, subcontractors, clients, project managers, and architects, a good contract administrator has to be able to quickly prioritize. It’s imperative to identify which contracts need to be dealt with immediately and which ones can wait until tomorrow.
Another important skill is documentation. There needs to be a paper trail anytime an agreement is met or a change is requested. Doing so will serve as a final ruling in the event of a misunderstanding or dispute.
Three Offices in 20 Years
Becky first started with us in the early 90’s, and after a few stents away, she’s permanently been with Cowen since June of 1999 and followed us through three office moves. Altogether, Becky has an almost 20-year tenure at Cowen and has held several different administrative roles. She’s done everything from answering the phones at the front desk to getting job sites set up with utilities and water coolers.