Evolution5's principal designer services for New Park Garage, Hampshire

Understanding the Principal Designer Role

15th May 2023   |   Liz Clarke   |   Reading Time: 3 minutes

Construction (Design and Management) Regulations (CDM 2015) stipulate that a principal designer must be appointed on construction projects with more than one trade contractor.

It is the principal designer’s responsibility to lead on health and safety during the pre-construction phase of a project.

This article aims to help improve your understanding of the principal designer role in construction projects. 

What is the principal designer role?

A principal designer plans, coordinates, and advises on health and safety during a project’s pre-construction phase (design stage). The principal designer is a designer but does not necessarily have to fulfil design work.

Principal designer roles and responsibilities include:

  • Planning, managing, monitoring, and coordinating health and safety in the pre-construction phase ensures that risks are managed throughout the design process.
  • Working with the project team, including designers and contractors, to advise and inform about health and safety information and risks.
  • Contributing to the project’s design phase, particularly regarding health and safety factors.
  • Identifying and resolving health and safety issues.
  • Ensuring compliance with health and safety regulations. 
  • Informing and advising the client of health and safety duties and requirements.
  • Ensuring collaboration, communication, and coordination across the project team regarding health and safety.
  • Helping to bring together pre-construction information for the design team and project contractors.
  • Preparing the health and safety file.

How much does a principal designer cost?

The fees for a principal designer vary from project to project. Cost-influencing factors include project size, scope, budget, timescales, and complexity.

For more information regarding costs for your project please get in touch with one of the team for a no-obligation consultation.

Do you need a principal designer?

If your project has or is likely to have, more than one trade contractor, you must appoint a principal designer under the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015.

Not only is appointing a principal designer a legal requirement, but they are also a key health and safety advisor to the project, providing invaluable insight that ensures that your project is compliant and contributes to the overall project design and coordination. 

How to appoint a principal designer

Now you know have a better understanding of the principal designer role,  let’s look at how you appoint an appropriate person for your project.

The principal designer can be an organisation or individual. Their role is to advise on the pre-construction phase of the project so they should be appointed at the earliest opportunity.

Your principal designer is a legal requirement to your project so they must have the right skills, qualifications, knowledge, and capabilities to fulfil the role.

A reliable, reassuring, and efficient way to meet the position of the principal designer is by appointing a specialised consultant to fulfil the role. By appointing a Chartered Building Consultancy (CIOB) and Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) regulated consultant, you will have the assurance that you are engaging a reputable company that you can trust and rely on.

How Evolution5 can help

As a CIOB Chartered Building Consultancy, we have extensive experience fulfilling the principal designer role in construction projects across various sectors and project specifications.

We can provide advisory services to support your in-house principal designer with our industry knowledge and expertise, or you can appoint us to act as your principal designer to plan, manage, and coordinate all pre-construction activities on your behalf, complying with regulations and contributing as a proactive member of your project team.

With extensive construction experience, Evolution5 is perfectly positioned to work collaboratively with your project team from the early stages of your project to ensure the build phase runs smoothly.

Evolution5 is a professional consultancy offering principal designer, CDM advisor, project management, quantity surveying, employer’s agent, and contract administration services for projects across London and the South East.

If you have a construction project and would like to explore how the team can help you, click the button below or call 023 8040 5073.