Construction Project Delivery Methods Explained

There are a variety of ways to approach a construction project. With so many different types of delivery methods and multiple stages of each phase in construction, it can be challenging to know if your team is making the right decisions. At Sampson Construction, your goals and objectives are always our top priority, and we help you evaluate your needs and priorities as well as choose the delivery method that best aligns with your preferences and project requirements.

Construction Management
Construction Manager (CM), or Construction Manager at Risk (CMAR), is a delivery method that utilizes the construction company as an advisor, consultant, advocate and builder. The CM firm is selected prior to the completion of the drawings and offers pre-construction consulting during design. CM and CMAR contracts often utilize a Guaranteed Maximum Price (GMP) as the cost component of the contract. Owners have the opportunity to select a design team and a contractor independently, based on each firm’s qualifications and suitability for the project.

As a construction manager, the contractor is more than the builder. The Construction Management firm serves as the owner’s advocate and advisor during all phases of design and construction. This is an “open book” contract, allowing the owner to financially benefit from any cost savings that may occur during the project. Owners choose Construction Management when they prefer a qualifications-based team, with collaboration and owner input throughout the entire project. Every decision is made as a collaborative team on a Construction Management project.

Benefits of Construction Management
Increased owner involvement 
Increased constructability reviews
Decreased unexpected costs due to Guaranteed Maximum Price 
Decreased changes in scope after designs have been completed 

Project Examples 

Scheels (Lincoln, NE)

Syracuse Community Memorial Hospital

Western Hills Elementary School

Design-Build is a delivery method that has gained popularity in the last decade in the construction industry. A design-build project uses a single source contract for the construction company, design team, subcontractors and consultants. The team works together from the beginning, providing a unified and collaborative problem-solving approach to all stages of the project. While single-source contracting is the fundamental difference between design-build and the other delivery methods, equally important is the culture of collaboration inherent in design-build.

Design-Build provides the owner with one point of contact, and one contract, for both the design and construction. The project owner selects the design-builder based on the team of construction and design professionals’ experience, ideas, price and track record. Owners choose this project delivery method when they prefer to have one contract for the design and construction combined, creating a seamless team of professionals for all stages of the project.

Advantages of Design-Build 
Greater convenience for the owner due to the management of one contract 
Increased collaboration between design and contract teams from the beginning of the project
Faster project delivery due to one contract for design and construction
Saves time and money by encouraging innovation and collaboration

Project Examples 

Underwriters Laboratories Office Building

Trailside Academy PK-8

Diller Odell Gym, Admin Officers & Main Entrance

Design Bid Build is a project delivery method that leads to the hiring of a General Contractor. This delivery method was the original method used to hire a builder, and only in the most recent era have we seen other delivery methods used. Design-Bid-Build is a “one step at a time” process for the project. The documents are completed and bids are solicited from General Contractors. 

In Design-Bid-Build, the project owner begins by hiring an architectural firm to design the project. After the design is completed, a contractor is chosen through a bid process, with the lowest bidder being awarded the project. Some owners prefer to have a prequalified list of bidders prior to bid day, while others choose to have an open bid environment to all interested bidders. Owners who value price over the ability to select a builder based on merit often choose this method, as well as mandated public entities that require a public bid.

Attributes of Design-Bid-Build
By putting a project out to bid, you’re ensuring that the open market provides you with competitive bid options
Architects are more active in construction administration, so design intentions are carried through construction
Design and construction roles are separate and well-understood, making both responsibility and liability relatively clear

Project Examples

Council Bluffs Police Headquarters

Anchor Pointe Elementary

Rushmore Plaza Civic Center

So whether it’s construction management, design-build or design-bid-build, at Sampson Construction, our in-house team of experts can help you with any construction project. We’re dedicated to always exceeding our client's expectations because we believe a partner shares your vision, goals and expectations. We collaborate and problem solve together from day one to ensure however Sampson Construction is involved in the project, we’ll make a lasting impact together.

About Sampson Construction: Sampson Construction has served as a trusted partner with business owners, developers and communities across the country. Projects may vary in size, scope, budget and complexity, but our values and passion inspire every project we deliver. We serve a variety of markets and have the expertise and flexibility to complete projects anywhere in the country. For more information, visit

Exceeding Expectations

At Sampson Construction, our in-house team of experts help drive mentoring and high performance. This extraordinary level of teamwork and pride spans generations. Our clients feel the impact at the jobsite throughout every stage of the project. Our culture is driven by quality, experience and commitment.