Career Development

What Does a Quantity Surveyor Do?

Find out what a quantity surveyor does, how to get this job, and what it takes to succeed as a quantity surveyor.

A surveyor is responsible for measuring and mapping the Earth’s surface. They use a variety of tools to do this, including GPS units, lasers, and other instruments. Their job is to create detailed maps that show where everything is located in relation to everything else. This information is used by many different people and organizations—from construction companies to city planners—to make decisions about how to best utilize the land around them.

Quantity Surveyor Job Duties

Quantity surveyors have a wide range of responsibilities, which can include:

  • Estimating labor costs for specific projects, including fringe benefits such as health insurance or retirement contributions
  • Reviewing blueprints, sketches, or drawings to determine layout and construction requirements
  • Inspecting construction sites for safety as well as compliance with building codes and state regulations
  • Identifying potential risks or problems with a project’s scope or budget, then developing solutions to mitigate those risks
  • Reviewing contracts with contractors and subcontractors to ensure compliance with industry standards and requirements
  • Managing projects from start to finish, including planning work activities, scheduling labor, monitoring progress, estimating costs, and preparing reports
  • Gathering data about labor costs, equipment needs, materials prices, and other relevant factors in order to create bid proposals
  • Estimating materials usage and costs based on building plans and specifications
  • Conducting post-construction surveys to ensure that projects were completed according to specifications

Quantity Surveyor Salary & Outlook

The salary of a quantity surveyor can vary depending on their level of education, years of experience, and the type of project they are working on. Quantity surveyors who work for construction companies may earn more than those who work in other industries.

  • Median Annual Salary: $95,000 ($45.67/hour)
  • Top 10% Annual Salary: $162,000 ($77.88/hour)

The employment of quantity surveyors is expected to grow slower than average over the next decade.

Employment growth will be limited because many projects require only a few surveyors, and these workers are expensive. However, demand for quantity surveyors should remain strong in some industries, such as construction and engineering services, where firms need to keep costs down.

Quantity Surveyor Job Requirements

A quantity surveyor typically needs to have the following qualifications:

Education: Most employers require a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in a field such as business, finance or construction management. Some employers may accept an associate’s degree in construction management or construction engineering.

Many construction surveyors pursue a degree in civil engineering. This degree provides a foundation in mathematics, science and engineering.

Training & Experience: Many companies require their quantity surveyors to have at least five years of experience in the field. This experience can include working as a surveyor, a project manager or a construction manager. Some companies also require their quantity surveyors to have at least two years of experience in a supervisory role.

Certifications & Licenses: Though certifications are not required to become a quantity surveyor, they can help you become a more competitive candidate when applying for jobs. Some employers may even require certain certifications or certifications.

Quantity Surveyor Skills

Quantity surveyors need the following skills in order to be successful:

Mathematics: Mathematics is the ability to perform calculations and interpret data. As a surveyor, you use mathematics to measure and calculate the area of land, the distance between two points and the area of a building. You also use mathematics to interpret data and create graphs and charts.

Data analysis: Data analysis is the ability to interpret information and draw conclusions from it. As a surveyor, you use data analysis to interpret the information you collect during a survey. This includes analyzing the accuracy of the data, determining the best way to present the data and identifying trends in the data.

Technical skills: Technical skills are the knowledge and expertise you have in a specific field. As a surveyor, technical skills are the foundation of your job and the skills you use to complete your work. Technical skills are important in any career because they allow you to perform your duties efficiently and effectively.

Communication: Communication is the act of conveying information through verbal or nonverbal methods. As a surveyor, you use communication skills to convey information to clients, other surveyors and engineers. You also use communication skills to interpret data and explain it to others.

Project management: Project management is the ability to oversee a project from start to finish. It involves planning, organizing and directing a project to ensure it meets its goals. As a surveyor, you may be responsible for managing a project from start to finish. This can include planning the project, creating a budget, managing the project’s team and ensuring the project meets its goals.

Quantity Surveyor Work Environment

Quantity surveyors work in a variety of settings, including construction sites, offices, and factories. They may be exposed to noise, dust, and other hazards when working on construction sites. They usually work regular hours, but they may work overtime to meet deadlines. Some quantity surveyors travel to different job sites, and some may work abroad.

Quantity Surveyor Trends

Here are three trends influencing how quantity surveyors work. Quantity surveyors will need to stay up-to-date on these developments to keep their skills relevant and maintain a competitive advantage in the workplace.

The Need for More Data-Driven Decision Making

As businesses become more data-driven, the need for more data-driven decision making becomes increasingly important. This means that quantity surveyors will need to be able to collect and analyze data in order to make better decisions about where to allocate resources.

Quantity surveyors can utilize this trend by becoming more familiar with data collection and analysis tools. They can also work to develop relationships with other members of the business team who are responsible for making decisions based on data. This will allow them to collaborate on projects and share information that can help everyone make better decisions.

The Importance of Collaboration

The importance of collaboration is a trend that is being seen across many industries. As teams become more global and businesses expand into new markets, it is essential that all team members work together to achieve common goals.

Quantity surveyors are in a unique position to take advantage of this trend, as they are often responsible for working with teams from different countries to ensure that projects are completed on time and within budget. By developing strong communication skills and an understanding of cultural differences, quantity surveyors can be successful in any team environment.

More Focus on Cost Control

As businesses focus more on cost control, quantity surveyors will be in high demand. Quantity surveyors are responsible for ensuring that projects stay within budget, which is becoming increasingly important for businesses.

Quantity surveyors can capitalize on this trend by becoming experts in cost control techniques. They can also develop relationships with suppliers who can provide products at a lower price point. In addition, quantity surveyors can educate their clients on ways to save money without sacrificing quality.

How to Become a Quantity Surveyor

A career as a quantity surveyor can be very rewarding. It offers the opportunity to work in a variety of industries and on a range of projects, which means you’ll always have something new to learn. You’ll also develop strong communication skills, which are essential for working with clients and other professionals.

To become a successful quantity surveyor, it’s important to have a good understanding of mathematics and science. You should also be able to think logically and be able to problem-solve. If you have these skills, along with an interest in construction and engineering, then a career as a quantity surveyor could be perfect for you.

Advancement Prospects

Quantity surveyors typically start their careers as assistant quantity surveyors. With experience, they may advance to become quantity surveyors or senior quantity surveyors. Some quantity surveyors become self-employed consultants.

Those who are interested in management may become construction managers, project managers, or estimators. Some quantity surveyors move into teaching or research. Some become sales representatives for construction-related products.

Quantity Surveyor Job Description Example

As a quantity surveyor at [CompanyX], you will be responsible for the cost management of construction projects from the initial stages through to completion. Your duties will include preparing cost estimates, negotiating and agreeing contracts, and monitoring project progress to ensure that costs are controlled. You will also be responsible for preparing tender and contract documents, and for carrying out cost-benefit analyses.

The successful candidate will have a degree in quantity surveying or a related field, and will be a member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS). He or she will have experience of working on construction projects, and will have excellent negotiation and communication skills.

Duties & Responsibilities

  • To take off quantities from drawings for all building materials including structural steel, blockwork, brickwork, curtain walling, glazing, joinery, drylining, tiling, flooring, mechanical and electrical services
  • To price the building materials using current rates and produce an accurate estimate
  • To submit tenders to clients and attend tender interviews
  • To negotiate with suppliers and sub-contractors to get the best possible price for the project
  • To prepare cost reports showing actual costs against forecasted costs
  • To monitor expenditure on projects and keep within budget
  • To liaise with the project manager, site manager and other members of the construction team
  • To attend progress meetings with clients, architects and engineers
  • To value completed work and arrange for payments to be made to contractors
  • To measure areas of work and calculate the volumes of materials required
  • To undertake cost benefit analysis
  • To provide advice on a range of legal and contractual issues

Required Skills and Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree in quantity surveying, construction management, or related field
  • 5+ years experience as a quantity surveyor on commercial construction projects
  • Thorough understanding of construction contracts, both standard form and bespoke
  • Ability to read and interpret architectural drawings, specifications, and schedules
  • Strong negotiation skills and experience dealing with subcontractors
  • Excellent mathematical skills and experience with cost analysis

Preferred Skills and Qualifications

  • Master’s degree in quantity surveying, construction management, or related field
  • 10+ years experience as a quantity surveyor
  • Chartered membership of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) or equivalent professional body
  • Experience working with computer-aided design (CAD) software
  • Working knowledge of building information modeling (BIM)

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