Anderson, 57, who left Jarvis at the end of last year, has been brought in by group chairman Ray O'Rourke to increase turnover from £220m a year to about £400m. Anderson expects this to take four to five years.
Anderson's plans for O'Rourke's expansion are based on increasing its links with construction management firms. He said: "We want to be the best service provider to the likes of Mace, Bovis, Sir Robert McAlpine and developers."
Although O'Rourke is best known as a structural subcontractor, it also handles services, fit-outs and curtain walling. Anderson wants O'Rourke to be able to offer subcontracting skills that are needed at an early stage in construction management contracts.
"What I see happening is for the client's team or the construction manager to bring together three or four specialist contractors early in the design phase to work alongside the consultants, offering a guaranteed maximum price and delivery date," he said.
"On major projects of any size, O'Rourke can provide a watertight, fully clad structure in the form of a GMP package," he added.
Anderson said O'Rourke would be similar to an old-fashioned main contractor that provides labour and materials from within the organisation, rather than making money by assessing risks and handling contracts.
O'Rourke directly employs 1700 representatives and has 400 staff, most of whom are engineers.
He said O'Rourke was interested in the private finance market. "We will enter the public-private partnership market but cautiously, and with like-minded companies in consortiums," he explained.
Anderson said he left Jarvis, where he was head of major rail projects division, because of family pressures. "I was working from York quite a lot and I live in Chertsey. It meant I wasn't seeing a lot of my six-month-old son," he said.
However, at the time, analysts suggested that Anderson left because of a lack of work.