General Construction

Construction is the process of constructing a building or infrastructure. Construction differs from manufacturing in that manufacturing typically involves the bulk production of similar items without an appointed purchaser, while construction typically takes place on location for a known client. Construction as an industry comprises six to nine percent of the gross domestic product of developed countries. Construction starts with planning, design, and financing; and continues until the project is built and ready for use.

Large-scale construction requires collaboration across multiple disciplines. An architect normally manages the job, and a construction manager, design engineer, construction engineer or project manager supervises it. Those involved with the design and execution must consider zoning requirements, the environmental impact of the job, scheduling, budgeting, construction site safety, availability and transportation of building materials, logistics, inconvenience to the public caused by construction delays and bidding. Large construction projects are sometimes referred to as megaprojects.

In general, there are three sectors of construction: buildings, infrastructure and industrial. Building construction is usually further divided into residential and non-residential (commercial/institutional). Infrastructure is often called heavy civil or heavy engineering that includes large public works, dams, bridges, highways, railways, water or wastewater and utility distribution. Industrial construction includes refineries, process chemical, power generation, mills and manufacturing plants. There are also other ways to break the industry into sectors or markets.

The Standard Industrial Classification and the newer North American Industry Classification System have a classification system for companies that perform or engage in construction. To recognize the differences of companies in this sector, it is divided into three subsectors: building construction, heavy and civil engineering construction, and specialty trade contractors. There are also categories for construction service firms (e.g., engineering, architecture) and construction managers (firms engaged in managing construction projects without assuming direct financial responsibility for completion of the construction project).


Construction. (2017). Retrieved on June 24, 2017, from