Because there are different types of contractors with different levels of potential risk, PREQUAL has a range of assessment processes designed for different types (or categories)  of contractors.

 PREQUAL defines contractors into the following categories;

  • Sole Trader - Independent Contractor
  • Category 1 - Very Small Contractor
  • Category 2 - Small Contractor
  • Category 3 - Contractor
  • Category 4 - Main or Controlling' Contractor
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Sole Trader - Independent contractor

Does not employ staff or engage other contractors, contracts independently

Category 1: Very small contractor

Engaged by higher-level contractors or directly by an employer or manager of contractors

  • Does not engage subcontractors other than sole traders
  • Operates under client’s or high level contractor’s management system
  • Typically employs less than 5 employees

Category 2: Small contractor

Engaged by higher-level contractors or directly by an employer or manager of contractors

  • Does not engage subcontractors other than sole traders
  • Operates under client’s or high level contractor’s management system
  • Typically employs less than 15 employees

Category 3: Contractor

Engaged by main contractors or directly by an employer or manager of contractors

  • May manage subcontractors
  • Usually operates under client or main contractor’s management systems
  • Typically employs 15+ employees and/or manages sub-contractors

Category 4: Main or controlling contractor

May be called ‘controlling contractor’ in construction

  • Effective management of health and safety through delivery phase
  • Directly or indirectly manages multiple subcontractors
  • Supplies the management systems for project/work services