A construction manager (CM) at risk is a project delivery method that entails a commitment by the construction manager to deliver the project at the guaranteed maximum price (GMP). The construction manager’s role during the design phase is of a consultant to the owner, and during the construction phase, they carry out the responsibilities of a general contractor.
There are two contracts in the CM at-risk project delivery method; one between the designer and the owner and the other between the at-risk construction manager and the owner.
Owners prefer this project delivery method because at-risk CM carries the financial liability for completing the project on time and within budget. The at-risk construction manager is also responsible for performing the construction services.
One of the benefits of this project delivery method is that the owner has a contractual avenue to bring the construction management function early into the project planning. By involving the construction manager early in the planning process, the construction manager can contribute by providing life-cycle cost analysis, value engineering, and conceptual estimating and scheduling.