Which NEC4 Contract?

Gain a quick overview of what kinds of projects each of the NEC4 contracts can be used for.

Which NEC4 Contract?

The principal NEC4 contracts, short contracts and subcontracts can be broadly grouped into works, services and supply.

Works contracts are suitable for engineering, construction and related undertakings in the built environment. Services contracts are designed for the hiring of professional services and longer-term facilities and maintenance contracts. Finally, supply contracts are suitable for the purchasing of anything from high-value construction plant and materials down to office stationery.

Contract families are divided into standard, short, and sub-contracts.

Which you choose will depend on the procurement complexity and level of risk. Short contracts are specifically designed to be more accessible and used for lower-complexity, lower-risk projects, meaning that NEC can be used for anything from creating the London 2012 Olympic Games to small housing developments.


Find out more about the contract families below.

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The main works contracts are the NEC4 Engineering and Construction Contract (ECC), the NEC4 Engineering and Construction Short Contract (ECSC), and their related subcontract forms.

They are suitable for purchases such as the design, construction, refurbishment and decommissioning of buildings, structures, process plants and infrastructure – including everything from houses, schools, hospitals and leisure facilities to infrastructure for water, energy, transport, industry and waste.

In addition, the NEC4 Alliance Contract (ALC) is designed for integrated delivery teams; and the NEC4 Design Build and Operate Contract (DBOC) is for works contracts that extend into the operational phase.

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The NEC4 Professional Service Contract (PSC), Subcontract (PSS), and Short Contract (PSSC) are suitable for purchasing professional services such as engineering, architectural, project management and consultancy works.

For composite services such as asset management and maintenance we have the NEC4 Term Service Contract (TSC) suite, and for facilities management such as cleaning, catering, decorating, security, maintenance, and data processing there are the NEC4 Facilities Management Contract (FMC), the NEC4 Facilities Management Short Contract (FMSC), and related subcontracts.

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Designed for contracting suppliers, NEC has the NEC4 Supply Contract (SC). It is for the supply of high-value goods and associated services such as transformers, generators, rolling stock, cranes, gantries, and complex plant.

The NEC4 Supply Short Contract (SSC) is perfect for lower risk items such as building materials and products, stationery, personal protective equipment and parts.

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NEC practice notes are released to provide advice and guidance on best practice using the contracts, and on implementing legislation and project values not included in the core contract clauses.

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