Have you heard of a corporate general contractor?

You might have heard of corporate general contractors if you’ve had any experience in the commercial construction space, but what exactly do they do? 

As the name suggests, they work exclusively with large corporations. That’s because the needs of a large corporation will differ in some ways from other construction jobs, for example, government buildings or small businesses. Some corporate general contractors are also called Traveling General Contractors because they travel to different cities and states to oversee the construction of a chain of restaurants or retail stores. 

Let’s learn about the advantages and disadvantages of working with a corporate general contractor and if one is right for your project!

What Does a Corporate General Contractor Do?

Like any other kind of contractor, a general contractor oversees all aspects of the construction project from planning to completion. This includes duties such as planning with the architect to develop a floor plan, overseeing the construction workers and enforcing safety policies, and working with the client to ensure that the project comes in at or under budget. 

Corporations usually work with one main construction service provider across all of their locations to maintain the same level of quality throughout their buildings. Some examples of companies who prefer to work with corporate general contractors include chain restaurants, phone companies like Verizon and T-Mobile, and entertainment corporations like Disney. 

In contrast, a contractor who has successfully completed numerous residential housing projects may not be the best fit for successfully completing a corporate building job. That is why a specialized corporate general contractor is a benefit to the company to employ. 

What Are The Benefits Of Hiring A Corporate General Contractor 

Corporate general contractors will understand what it takes to meet the needs of a large corporation. Corporations may have a team of architects to develop their floor plans across their scope of buildings, and the corporate general contractor will work with the architect to seamlessly help the project transition from the development stage to completion with the least amount of hiccups. 

Corporate building

Some of the main benefits of working with a corporate general contractor include:

  • Understanding the needs of corporate entities better than other contractors

  • Working seamlessly with all team members to make sure all deadlines are met

  • Maintaining a standard of quality assurance throughout multiple construction projects

  • Understanding the importance of safety for corporations to minimize losses

  • Keeping the project under budget 

What Are the Disadvantages of Hiring a Corporate General Contractor?

While corporate general contractors are like the childhood best friend who just gets you, they do have some disadvantages too. The disadvantages of working with this type of contractor include:

  • Not having as much knowledge of specific areas and construction regulations in those areas since they work all over the country

  • Since they don’t work only within a certain area, they might have more issues managing local teams and partners than a local commercial contractor would

  • Sometimes, they don’t always specialize in a specific type of building, but in commercial buildings overall. This might mean they aren’t always the most knowledgeable for your specific project. 

  • They can cost more money than other contractors, so it’s important to consider if your project is big enough to need their expertise and budget requirements. 

Sometimes, it makes more sense to work with a commercial contractor who is local to a certain area or specializes in a specific type of building, such as restaurants or hospitals, instead of all corporate buildings. 


When looking for a corporate general contractor, the most important questions to ask about the contracting company’s portfolio and prior experience. As we stated earlier, the more specialized the contracting service provided, the higher likelihood for the contractor to successfully meet the needs of the client.

After the corporate general contractor has completed multiple buildings of the same type of the same corporation, it will become very easy for them to project future budgets as long as it is the same kind of construction. Project managers and superintendents will know what kind of problems could occur during the project and how to fix them because they have prior experience with managing the construction for the same kind of buildings. 

Carlton Building Services in Hampton Roads Virginia

Carlton Building Services specializes in repairs, maintenance, renovations, remodelings and build-outs for a variety of clients in Hampton Roads, Virginia Beach, and Chesapeake areas. We have years of experience handling projects in the retail, office, and healthcare space and would love to work with you on your next project!
To learn more about our services, check out past project highlights or contact Carlton Building Services to see how we can help with your next project.

JP Carlton

J.P. Carlton

J.P. Carlton is the founder of Carlton Building Services, a Hampton Roads-based construction company.