What is a subcontractor?

The subcontractor is a self-employed person or a company offering specific services in a given industry. The subcontractor is hired by a contractor in order to complete a certain volume of work for them as a portion of a larger project for which the contractor has made a contract with a third party.

This process is also known as industrial subcontracting and can be applied to all kinds of industries, such as the automotive industry, furniture, electronics, aerospace, energy, and many more.

The subcontractor represents and manages their own business which is why they are responsible for supplying the necessary materials for the job, hire labor, and determine their own working hours. The subcontractor’s duty is to abide by the rules of the contract which includes completing the work within the timeframe described in the contractual terms, deliver production corresponding to previously set quality standards, and meet other specific requirements inherent to the particular activity. The subcontractor pays their own taxes, as well as their workers’ taxes, superannuation and compensation.

As a separate business unit, the subcontractor can be in contractual agreements with multiple general contractors at the same time. This means they can take on multiple projects to an extent allowed by their business capacity and resources in the sector of activity they are specialized in such as 3D printing, electricity, electronics, metal processing, prototyping, plastics manufacture, wood manufacture, welding and others. Browse European subcontractors by sector of activity.