Performance : A&E Contract Management

A&E Contract Management

Once a contract is in place, the contract manager assumes responsibility for making sure the work is carried out according to the terms of the agreement. Successfully managing the project begins with familiarizing yourself with the contract, understanding how the language affects the work to be done, and monitoring work activities in partnership with the project and functional managers.

To prepare for the work ahead, ask and answer these questions regarding the contract:

  • What do the terms of the contract allow you and the consultant to do?
  • What is the contract’s period of performance (begin and end dates)?
  • Is there any specialty work that needs to be done?
  • How much money does the contract involve?
  • How much money do you plan to spend in a given fiscal year?
  • How does this amount compare to previous years?
  • How will you track performance?
  • How is performance tied to payment?

Districts do not all perform contract management in the same manner. Ideally, a project manager (PM) or functional manager (FM) submits a task order against the contract; a contract manager (CM) is responsible for the contractual aspects of the contract while a task order manager (PM or FM) makes sure the technical requirements of the task order are satisfactorily completed. In other districts, the FM, PM and CM are the same individual who is responsible for all aspects of the contract.


Task Order Management

Contract Administration

Project Manager



Functional Manager



Contract Manager



The contract manager has many duties in administering a contract, ranging from writing task orders to following up with functional managers to verify if work has been completed as reported. Specific duties include:

  • scope of work changes and clarification
  • cost control and payments
  • negotiating with consultant
  • verifying work performed
  • reviewing progress reports
  • identifying need for task orders
  • verifying DBE utilization
  • completing annual consultant evaluations

For more information on CM responsibilities, see these resources on the Caltrans intranet:

Contract Manager’s Handbook available at

Project Management Directive 008 available at

A&E contract policies and guidelines available at