What Is a Proceed Order?

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  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 25 August 2019
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Sometimes referred to as a notice to proceed, a proceed order is a type of directive that is often used in the world of construction. The order is a formal notification to a general contractor that he or she is authorized to move forward or proceed with the project under consideration. This type of written order may be required in order to initiate work on the construction project, or to restart that work after changes in the contract have been approved.

The exact content of a proceed order will vary, based on the application of the directive. In situations that involve the issuance of the order as the notification that a contract has been signed and all parties are now committed to the project, the text of the document will often provide basic information about the nature of the construction deal, including the names and contact information for the parties responsible for the project. Typically, the proceed order does not include specifics about the contract price or project timeline, although both may be referred to as being included in the contract itself.


When a proceed order is used to authorize moving forward after the negotiation of changes in the construction contract, the document serves as formal notification to the contractor that he or she may resume work on that project, taking into account the changes that were negotiated and approved for inclusion in the revised contract. As with the initial proceed order associated with the construction, the order itself will not usually provide details on any changes in the price or timeline associated with the work, but will refer to the amended contract terms found in the revised contract itself. This provides a basic point of reference while avoiding the necessity of restating in full the nature of those changes.

The use of a proceed order varies, with some contractors requiring this type of documentation. Doing so helps to minimize the potential for miscommunications to take place between the parties involved in the construction project, and also helps to avoid any work on the project that may have to be redone in order to comply with the changes agreed upon by the parties involved. This in turn can help to reduce waste of time, labor, and raw materials used during the course of the construction and keep the project within budget, as well as minimize the potential for any type of legal issues that could arise from the performance of unauthorized tasks.


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