A Career As A Quantity Surveyor

A quantity surveyor (QS) is a construction industry professional who deals with construction costs and contracts.

A quantity surveyor is responsible for all aspects of the contractual and financial side of a construction project and helps to ensure that the project is completed within its projected budget.

Other job titles for a quantity surveyor include:

  • cost consultant
  • commercial manager
  • cost manager
  • cost engineer.

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Duties of a quantity surveyor

The duties of a quantity surveyor are:

  • Project cost estimating
  • Project cost planning
  • Project cost management
  • Analysis of the terms and conditions in a construction contract
  • Predicting potential risks in a construction project and taking precautions to mitigate them
  • Forecasting and presenting detailed information on the cost of particular elements of the project
  • Preparing tender documents, contracts, budgets and other documentation
  • liaising with clients and other construction professionals, such as site managers, project managers and site engineers
  • Taking note of changes made and adjusting the budget accordingly
  • Tender management including preparation of bills of quantities, contract conditions and assembly of tender documents
  • Paying subcontractors
  • Contract management and contractual advice
  • Measuring and valuating the work done on a construction site
  • Claims and dispute management
  • Project lifecycle costing analysis

How to become a Quantity Surveyor

To become a quantity surveyor, you need a minimum of:

  • 5 O levels or equivalent including mathematics
  • A BTEC in Building Studies, Building Engineering or Building Management or a HNC / HND / Degree in Quantity Surveying
  • A minimum of three years of relevant experience in construction projects.

Skills and qualities of a quantity surveyor

  • good written and verbal communication skills
  • the ability to write clear reports conveying complex information in a simple way
  • the ability to develop good working relationships, to motivate and lead those on site
  • strong mathematical, numerical, data analysis and critical thinking skills
  • good problem solving skills
  • IT skills and the ability to learn design and costing IT packages
  • good project management skills
  • the strength to work well under pressure
  • good commercial and financial awareness
  • excellent attention to detail
  • analytical thinking skills
  • knowledge of engineering science and technology
  • knowledge of building and construction

Juliet Muturuki

Quantity Surveyor and Freelance Writer.


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