Do you think of a construction quantity surveyor to be similar to an accountant who maintains a record of the expenses of a project? That definitely is one of the duties of a project quantity surveyor, however, there is much more to his or her role.
What does a construction quantity surveyor do?
The construction industry has been growing globally and therefore, more roles like quantity surveyors are becoming very important. The project quantity surveyors are primarily responsible for keeping a tab of the cost of any construction project from first draft estimates to acquiring materials. This job role focusses on giving value for money to clients and also complying with the strict regulations of the construction industry.
The amalgamation of elements of Civil Engineering, Finance, Economics, Statistics, Management, Valuation, and Law collectively defines the project quantity surveyor’s role.
Duties and role of a construction quantity surveyor:
- Measure and make an estimate of total material costs for projects
- Doing a cost analysis of all the maintenance and repair work
- Preparing contracts with details like quantities of materials needed
- Conducting a feasibility study of client requests
- Analyzing the work already done and then paying contractors
- Allocating work to contractors
- Study the building plans made by architects and the engineers
- Preparing reports for clients
- Overseeing the tender process for various contractors and subcontractors
- Doing site visits, evaluating and doing projections for future work, and check if the work is in the budget
- Recalculating expenses if the material or design changes
- Certifying the progress claims by various contractors
- Preparing a statement of final account
- Providing services in value management and comparison of building costs to similar buildings
- Making bank reports and also provide financial advice to clients
- Consulting with other professionals in the construction industry
- At times, the construction quantity surveyors may specialize in a particular area of the construction industry like costing advice, property taxation, doing the maintenance of existing buildings, etc.
- Other than this, a project quantity surveyor is also responsible for:
- Doing budgeting and cost studies and also keeping the costs in control
- Ensuring that the project meets its timelines
- Making sure that timely payments are made to all the stakeholders
- Helping to identify any gaps in the project contract, any misstatements made by the builder, and manage overall contracts negotiation
- Making a draft of contract terms and conditions while also working closely with the client’s legal and financial advisers to deliver the best results
- Making a detailed procurement and tendering strategy. This includes making a detailed bill of quantities (BOQ) and also tender documents.
- Manage your end-to-end contract practice to keep the project in control
- Conduct valuation of a project so that you could compare it with other proposals submitted by other builders and trades
- Conduct on-site assessments of the progress claims made by builder and make a detailed comparison report
- Negotiate and design various contracts for clients
- Manage dispute resolution and mediation
- Perform valuation for the purpose of insurance
- Do end-to-end project management and preparation of final accounts
Qualifications needed to become a Quantity Surveyor
To become a project quantity surveyor, one needs a degree or a professional qualification that is accredited by the Royal Institute for Chartered Surveyors (RICS) is needed. The most relevant degrees for the role of a quantity surveyor are as follows:
- Civil engineering
- Structural engineering
Getting into this profession without having a relevant degree is possible initially, but only when your employer is ready to fund a part-time degree course for you. If you have a non-relevant degree, you would need to enroll for an RICS-recognised postgraduate (PG) conversion course.