What Engineers Need to Know about Contracts

Location UK – register your interest

Date To be confirmed

Duration 1 day

Topic Contract and Project Management

CPD Hours 13.5

Price IChemE member £1000 + VAT, non-member £1200 +VAT


This course is also being delivered online – view details >>

Engineers need to understand the basis and practicalities of contract law in order to deliver successful projects and supplier relationships. Failure to understand the basics can prove very expensive.

If you are dealing with suppliers and managing contracts on a regular basis, it's important for you to be able to make informed decisions without waiting to consult with legal specialists.

This course is designed to provide you with a grounding in contract law for engineering and construction contracts, and how it is used to help deliver successful projects and supplier relationships.

Learning outcomes

At the end of course you will understand:

  • the role and purpose of contracts for engineering
  • the role of engineers in contract formation and management
  • how contracts are formed and ended
  • the terms and conditions and obligations placed on each party to the contract
  • how risk is allocated in different types of contract
  • processes for dispute and conflict resolution.

Who will benefit

  • Project managers
  • Contract managers
  • Contract administrators
  • Engineers and administrators
  • Consultants, consulting engineers, quantity surveyors
  • Sales and purchasing managers/personnel
  • General managers
  • Graduate engineers

Course outline

Day 1

  • 08:30 — Registration
  • 09:00 — Housekeeping, aims and objectives
  • 09:15 — Introduction to contracts – how and why they are formed
  • 10:00 — Exercise: Is this a contract?
  • 10:30 — Coffee
  • 10:45 — International law of contracts
  • 11:15 — Common pitfalls: verbal contracts, modified contracts, battle of the forms
  • 12:15 — Lunch
  • 13:00 — Key terms and conditions in contracts, express and implied terms of contracts
  • 14:00 — Warranties, guarantees, IPR and damages
  • 14:30 — Coffee
  • 15:00 — Standard and specialist forms of contract
  • 15:45 — Exercise: what sort of contract should we use?
  • 16:00 — Discharge of contract, breaches and damages
  • 16:30 — Finish

Day 2

  • 09:00 — Recap of day 1
  • 09:15 — The role of the engineer and project manager
  • 10:30 — Coffee
  • 10:45 — Contract management and variation
  • 11:30 — Contracts, the law and ethics
  • 12:15 — Lunch
  • 13:00 — Payment mechanisms
  • 14:00 — Introduction to standard forms of contract


Discounts are available to companies booking more than one place:

  • 2 places — 5% discount
  • 3 places — 10% discount
  • 4 or more places — 15% discount.

Bookings must be made at the same time to receive the discount.

In-company training

This course is also available as an in-company course (face-to-face or online) where content can be customised to meet your organisation's specific needs and delivered on a date/location that suits your requirements. Contact us for more information.

Register your interest

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Contact Phone +44 (0)1788 534496

Contact Email

Register your interest
Paul Wright


Paul Wright

Paul was born in Hull and attended the University of Leeds where he studied Physics and completed a PhD in NMR of Polyethylene Melts. He then joined chemical industry multinational ICI where he had a variety of technical and commercial roles, latterly as Engineering Contracts Manager in the Contracts Purchasing Group (corporate procurement). As part of his duties there he led training in purchasing for a variety of ICI businesses, which resulted in him becoming a self employed trainer and consultant in 1998.

Since then he has worked extensively in the Middle East, frequently with leading oil and gas companies, and in the UK Public Sector. He continues to work with both buying and selling organisations to ensure that the process is a beneficial as possible. His UK consultancy has focused on developing supply chains in the public and private sectors and has covered a wide range of sectors including chemicals, engineering and sports. He is also an associate lecturer at the University of Bradford School of Management covering a range of commercial topics.

He is the author with Stuart Emmett of Excellence in Public Sector Procurement, Cambridge Academic 2011. 

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