Means and Methods – a simple definition – is defined by the manner by which the contractor (in this example) performs the job as described in the contract documents, i.e. painting, waterproofing, masonry or repair.
Sometimes, the contractor will ask an innocent question – “How would you protect the roof?”, which can inadvertently get the consultant into trouble should his suggestion not work or cause damage and / or additional costs. The A/E/C needs to understand that once they’re involved in how the project is performed, they are taking on liability, and should something go wrong with the project, they now could be on the hook for damages.
It’s important to remember that in large projects, although at times it can be overwhelming and complicated, we consultants do like to collaborate with the contractor, but the means and methods to which a project is completed should be strictly kept to the contractor to avoid potential liabilities.