Often, an elevator consultant is called in to offer advice on installing a new elevator.
An elevator consultant provides advice and assistance to companies that install and renovate people-handling equipment such as elevators, escalators and walkways. Consulting can occur in the early planning stages of new construction, renovations and reuse plans. These construction experts can also offer advice on maintenance, retrofitting old equipment, and retrofitting to make equipment safer and more efficient. This work typically involves traveling to visit construction sites and meeting with owners and designers to discuss elevators and planned construction activities.
An elevator consultant makes recommendations on modes of transportation other than elevators, such as escalators.
A portion of an elevator consultant’s job takes place during new construction. Consultants provide advice on the location, size and arrangement of elevators and other equipment to meet inland transport needs. This includes not only people moving within a facility, but also cargo and special needs. Special considerations may include elevators used to move patients between floors, where elevators may need to accommodate hospital beds, life support equipment, and personnel. The consultant can study the construction plans and offer suggestions, working with an engineer on the placement and scheduling of the elevator to ensure it meets the occupants’ needs.
When buildings are renovated, the company may install elevators or retrofit. An elevator consultant can assess the building and plans to develop suggestions. For adaptive reuse, where companies want to maintain the historic character of a building while making it accessible and more functional, the consultant should consider discreet integration of features to modernize the building without ruining the appearance. Particularly for historic landmarks, which can be protected, this requires special skills.
Companies can also call an elevator consultant for advice on upgrading an elevator system to make it safer and more efficient. The work may include consulting on scheduled maintenance and similar activities to keep elevators running smoothly and safely. Consultants, unlike technicians, do not perform repairs and maintenance, but need to be familiar with systems and all relevant laws so they can advise companies on proper and safe maintenance schedules.
No special qualifications are required to work as an elevator consultant and they come from a variety of backgrounds. Some may be engineers, designers or former elevator technicians. Others have construction and contracting experience or learned on the job while working for a consulting firm. Like other contracting consultants, elevator consultants need to keep up with industry developments to provide the highest quality service to their customers, ensuring companies receive legal and architecturally correct advice.