Civil engineers are contractors that design, construct and maintain civil works, including but not limited to buildings, roads, railways, bridges, dams, underground mining tunnels, ports, and so on, for public as well as private clients.
Choosing a befitting civil engineer for your specific construction project requires that you take a number of factors into consideration. Below are some crucial factors worth considering.
Knowledge and experience amassed
Unlike other engineering disciplines, such as electrical, mechanical and chemical engineering, civil engineering is always affected by new land-use laws. It is critical that civil engineers be conversant with the latest local, state, and federal land-use laws, so they do not land you in legal trouble. To help gauge a civil engineer's understanding of applicable land regulations, ask the local council department responsible for authorising civil works plans to disclose the number and types of submissions the engineer has filed for approval recently.
Avoid contracting civil engineers that haven't submitted civil works construction plans for approval in recent years because the land-use legislation can change drastically within that length of time. The quantity and quality of exposure to various civil works projects that the engineer has amassed in recent times is an indication of knowledge and experience.
Level of technology deployed
A civil contractor that has invested substantially in advanced technology and a highly skilled workforce is likely to provide superior results. As regards technology, some tech-savvy engineers today are using computer-aided design (CAD) software to increase the speed and accuracy with which they can create and update designs and drawings for civil construction projects. Coupled with access to high-speed Internet, this allows the engineers to make modification to their clients' designs and drawings in real-time.
The deployment of the highly sophisticated technology creates the need for a highly skilled staff that can operate the cutting-edge tools and equipment. Therefore, you should enquire about what type of technology the engineer employs before you can make your choice.
Cost of hiring
It goes without saying that the cost of hiring a civil engineer will certainly influence your decision when you are choosing an engineer for your particular project. As with any other service available for hire, civil engineers charge differently.
Always keep in mind that you get what you pay for, so while it may be tempting to go for the engineer that quotes the lowest price, it's prudent to strike a balance between the monetary cost of hiring a civil engineer and the quality of the service the company is offering.
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