Generally, a consulting engineer is retained when there is a specific project to be addressed, or where specialist expertise is needed to examine a particular opportunity or problem. Consulting engineers are also engaged to supplement in-house staff resources when the work at hand exceeds their capacity or range of expertise. They may be engaged to:

  • assist with the planning needed to increase the output or efficiency of operations;
  • conduct assessments of the technical and economic feasibility of a capital project;
  • develop conceptual designs and capital cost estimates for setting of budgets;
  • optimize component or system performance in existing or planned facilities;
  • develop new products, production facilities, structures, or systems;
  • assist in dispute resolution or advocacy through condition assessment, expert witness, site and environmental impact assessment.

To illustrate the breadth of possibilities, ACEC-Manitoba Member-Firms offer expertise in more than 150 fields of specialization – a listing of these fields and the Member Firms practicing in them is contained here.

Consulting engineers can make a valuable contribution to projects at all stages of development, from determining and defining the scope and setting preliminary budgets, through to commissioning of the completed works.

They have a valuable role to fill in:

  • concept development, preliminary, and detailed design;
  • providing the cost estimates for capital budgets, and the documentation needed to assist in securing financing;
  • assembling essential site information in the way of site services, geotechnical information for assessment of underground conditions and topographic features;
  • preparation of preliminary and detailed design documents and progressively more accurate cost estimates as the level of definition of the project increases;
  • preparation of tender documents and negotiating contracts for construction or other;
  • providing construction management services or managing construction contracts through to completion of the work, representing the owner’s interests during the course of construction;
  • and managing the commissioning of the operating systems of the project to prove functional performance of all components prior to paying out the contractor(s) responsible.


Consulting-Engineers-Guide-May 2018

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