Document Type



Available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike 4.0 International Licence


Architecture engineering, Construction engineering

Publication Details

Report prepared for Dublin Institute of Technology, 2015.


This study examines the various options available for a client to appoint a contractor. The study investigates open tendering, selective tendering, prequalification, two stage selective tendering, competitive dialogue, negotiation and serial tendering. In most building contracts the contractor is selected on the basis of competitive tendering. The price which the contractor quotes for the job is heavily influenced by both the amount and intensity of the competition. Even in the case of negotiated tenders there is implicit competition, as the employer can break off negotiations. If there is no competition the contractor can, in effect, ‘name his price’. This study examines the factors which influence one of the most cost significant decisions a client will make in the course of a building contract. It explains the characteristics, advantages and disadvantages of the various tender options and seeks to inform decision making concerning selecting a suitable tender arrangement to achieve the client’s objectives. The study is addressed to Irish students undertaking studies on undergraduate and conversion masters courses in quantity surveying and construction management related disciplines.