Are you interested in a career as a quantity surveyor? Quantity surveying, which involves the management of costs and contracts in the building industry, is an incredibly rewarding and challenging profession. As a quantity surveyor, you play a pivotal role in ensuring the economic viability and successful completion of construction projects. If you possess a passion for the construction industry, excel in working with numbers and analysis, and possess an unwavering commitment to precision, then a career as a quantity surveyor may be the perfect fit for you.
Now, let’s delve into how you can become a quantity surveyor. To embark on this exciting career path, certain prerequisites and necessary abilities need to be considered. First and foremost, acquiring a relevant educational background is essential. Many universities and institutions offer specialized programs in quantity surveying, providing you with the knowledge and skills necessary to thrive in this field. Additionally, gaining practical experience through internships or apprenticeships can significantly enhance your understanding of the industry and increase your employability.
Apart from formal education, honing specific abilities is key to becoming a successful quantity surveyor. Proficiency in mathematical calculations and data analysis is paramount, as you will be responsible for accurately estimating project costs, managing budgets, and conducting financial assessments. Moreover, keen attention to detail is crucial, as even the slightest errors in measurements or calculations can have significant repercussions on project outcomes.
Once you have acquired the necessary education and developed the required abilities, you can explore a wide range of job opportunities in the quantity surveying industry. These roles can span various sectors, including construction companies, engineering firms, government agencies, and consulting firms. Quantity surveyors may find themselves involved in projects of different scales, from residential and commercial buildings to infrastructure and public works.
Quantity surveyors are building industry experts that keep projects within budget and on schedule by monitoring and analyzing a wide range of financial data. After gathering information from clients, coworkers, and construction workers, they report to the business’s accounting division. Construction sites are regular stops for quantity surveyors during the course of a project.
What’s it like to be a Quantity Surveyor?
Quantity surveyors collaborate with other construction industry pros like architects, engineers, and builders to create project budgets, conduct project audits, and oversee the financial aspects of building contracts.
What does a quantity surveyor do?
Helping to estimate prices, material amounts, and project schedules is the main focus of a quantity surveyor’s work. Communication with the many different teams involved in the project will be crucial to ensuring its timely completion.
Tasks and duties
- Cooperating with other building experts to complete jobs.
- Analyzing blueprints and technical descriptions of the building’s structural elements.
- Assessing the financial implications of proposed alterations to the building plans.
- Creating budget projections for customers.
- Assessing the project’s viability in order to make informed judgments
Quantity Surveyor Requirements
- Qualifications are equivalent to a Bachelor of Science in Quantity Surveying, engineering, or Management.
- Estimating or financial experience in the construction industry is a plus.
- Superior capacity for analysis and reflection.
- Expertise in the building industry.
- Highly developed interpersonal and bargaining abilities.
- Competence in setting goals and developing strategies.
- In order to drive legally, you must have a current driver’s license.
- Great capacity for network communication
Understanding Quantity Surveying
Quantity surveyors play crucial and indispensable roles throughout the entire development process of a building. As a quantity surveyor, you will be responsible for various vital tasks such as creating comprehensive budgets, meticulously preparing bills of materials, and diligently handling bid paperwork. Your expertise will extend to providing continuous cost monitoring and effective control measures, ensuring that the project remains within the allocated budget throughout its lifecycle. Moreover, as a quantity surveyor, you will actively contribute to the selection process of contractors and subcontractors, using your insightful evaluations to aid in making informed decisions.
In addition to these pivotal responsibilities, quantity surveyors often find themselves at the forefront of dealing with contractual issues, resolving disputes, and enforcing rules and regulations to maintain a smooth and compliant construction process. Their in-depth knowledge of contractual matters and their ability to navigate complex legal frameworks are paramount in ensuring fair and equitable outcomes for all parties involved.
To embark on a successful journey to become a quantity surveyor, one must possess a diverse skill set that combines a keen eye for detail, strong analytical abilities, and a solid understanding of mathematics and construction principles. Pursuing a formal education in quantity surveying or a related field will equip you with the necessary theoretical foundation and practical expertise. Furthermore, gaining relevant professional experience through internships or apprenticeships will provide invaluable hands-on training and exposure to real-world projects.
Developing effective communication skills and honing your ability to collaborate with multidisciplinary teams are equally essential in this profession. Quantity surveyors often interact with architects, engineers, contractors, and clients, necessitating clear and concise communication to ensure accurate project coordination.
As you progress in your career, consider pursuing certifications and professional memberships offered by reputable industry organizations. These credentials, such as the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) qualification, can enhance your credibility and open doors to advanced opportunities in the field.
Quantity surveyors play a crucial role in the budgeting and management of expansive building projects. As experts in their field, they meticulously inspect structures to ensure strict compliance with building codes and impeccable quality. Becoming a quantity surveyor opens doors to countless opportunities at various project scales. Clients place immense trust in these professionals to consistently deliver exceptional value across a wide range of projects, be it residential, commercial, or industrial.
If you aspire to become a quantity surveyor, it’s essential to acquire the necessary skills and knowledge through specialized education and practical experience. Obtaining a degree in quantity surveying or a related discipline lays a strong foundation for a successful career in this field. Additionally, seeking internships or apprenticeships with established quantity surveying firms can provide invaluable hands-on training and exposure to real-world scenarios.
Developing proficiency in areas such as cost estimation, project management, and contract negotiation is crucial for aspiring quantity surveyors. Moreover, staying updated with the latest industry standards, regulations, and technological advancements is vital to thrive in this dynamic profession. By dedicating yourself to continuous learning, honing your analytical abilities, and nurturing effective communication skills, you can embark on a rewarding journey toward becoming a skilled and sought-after quantity surveyor.
A bachelor’s degree in quantity surveying or a related field would be helpful.
- Structural engineering
- Civil engineering
- Urban or land studies.
If you already hold an unrelated first degree you could complete a postgraduate conversion course. This should be accredited by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) and the Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB).
Developing the Necessary Skills
Relationship building with clients is essential in the role of a quantity surveyor. You can better serve your clients and provide them sound advice by getting to know them on a personal level. Therefore, interpersonal skills are an important asset for a quantity surveyor.
Interpersonal competence is the capacity to communicate and work effectively with other people. Most jobs require regular use of interpersonal skills, as they include contact with the public. The capacity to communicate and collaborate effectively with people is closely related to these abilities. Although you can acquire these abilities with practice and study, you won’t be able to do so from a book alone. Although some people may have naturally strong interpersonal skills, the greatest method to improve in this area is through consistent practice.
A quantity surveyor, in addition to having extensive building-related expertise, should also be analytical and pragmatic in their approach to problems. In that manner, they may more effectively convey their thoughts and ideas to the customer, fostering a deeper level of mutual understanding.
Good communication skills are a must if you want to reach the top of your field. A reliable quantity surveyor will be able to produce reports that are easy to read and understand. They also need to know how to break down complicated concepts for the layperson.
The nature of the construction sector necessitates a regular interchange of information, making clear and effective communication a must for all those employed in the field. Understanding the motivations and perspectives of the other person is an essential part of effective communication. Building strong relationships with customers requires clear and effective communication. Working relationships with coworkers can improve, disputes can be avoided, and better decisions can be made. The project’s timeline and budget could suffer without effective communication.
Everyone in the construction sector may benefit from better communication, and picking the right way can speed up and simplify that interaction. There are times when a short email will do the trick. However, it may be necessary to hold a meeting in order to address key components of the project.
Negotiation skills are essential for any quantity surveyor. It has the potential to reduce costs for both the business and the customer. As a quantity surveyor, your ability to negotiate can help you succeed whether you work in an office setting or out in the field. If you’re good at negotiations, you can obtain your client a great offer.
Learning the art of negotiation is something that might take time and practice. Some people may need to work on their negotiating skills, while others may have them naturally. But if you master it, you can advance your career and become an industry leader.
You have to have confidence in what you can offer in negotiations. Going into a negotiation with the mindset that the other party is doing you a favor by agreeing to work with you is a surefire recipe for failure. Having confidence in the value you bring to the table during negotiations is essential. Think like the other person and try to guess what they would find most impressive.
Analytical Thinking Skills
As a quantity surveyor, you’ll mostly be responsible for cost planning and management on large building projects. You will be accountable for making sure the buildings adhere to all relevant quality and legislation standards. You’ll need sharp analytical chops to complete these assignments successfully.
The ability to evaluate the facts at hand and draw logical conclusions is an example of analytical thinking. Creative problems can be solved by someone with strong analytical thinking skills. They have the ability to make sense of seemingly chaotic information. You’re a critical thinker, so you assist your customer make good choices with the information they have.
You may hone your analytical abilities in a number of different ways. One is to expand one’s horizons through study. A solid understanding of the construction business can aid you in analyzing data, budgets, and other factors related to the projects. One of the best ways to develop your analytical abilities is to practice mathematics.
Ability with Numbers
From the beginning of a project all the way through to its conclusion, a quantity surveyor is responsible for a wide range of mathematical calculations. You’ll use the data provided to determine whether or not the venture will turn a profit. You’ll also have to keep track of the project’s spending to make sure it doesn’t go overboard. All of these responsibilities call for a high level of numeracy.
You will also be responsible for estimating and calculating the cost of construction projects. You’ll need solid numeracy abilities to complete these exercises successfully. You’ll oversee the project’s total budget using the data and information at your disposal. Quantity surveyors benefit from financial management skills such as budgeting, valuing, creating payment certifications, etc.
Some folks just happen to have a natural knack for numbers. However, the greatest approach to perfecting this ability is by repeated mathematical practice, which may include the solution of equations. Since all of the mathematics relies on logic, honing your skills in mathematics can improve not only your numeracy but also your analytical prowess. Quantity surveyors also require analytical abilities, as was previously indicated.
Career Path and Progression
As you embark on the journey to become a quantity surveyor, a world of opportunities awaits you. With dedication and experience, you can unlock various career paths and take your profession to new heights. One possible avenue is advancing to a senior quantity surveyor, where your expertise and leadership skills will be in high demand. As you gain more experience, you may even find yourself thriving as a senior project manager, overseeing large-scale construction projects and ensuring their successful completion.
Another exciting option is to explore the role of a supply chain manager, where you’ll be responsible for optimizing the flow of materials and resources in the construction industry. This position allows you to make strategic decisions that impact the efficiency and profitability of projects. Alternatively, you can leverage your extensive knowledge and become a consultant, offering valuable insights and advice to various stakeholders in the construction field.
As your career progresses, you may even consider venturing into entrepreneurship and starting your own business. This path allows you to establish your brand and tailor your services to meet the specific needs of clients. Imagine the satisfaction of leading your own team and building a successful enterprise in the construction industry.
Within the field of quantity surveying, there are several areas in which you can choose to specialize. Planning, an essential aspect of any construction project, offers opportunities to develop your expertise and become a sought-after professional. Risk analysis is another critical area where your skills can shine, as you assess potential hazards and devise strategies to mitigate them effectively. Additionally, contract disputes are common in the construction industry, and with specialized knowledge in this area, you can play a pivotal role in resolving conflicts and ensuring fair agreements.
Furthermore, you might find yourself drawn to the realm of academia. Sharing your extensive knowledge and practical experience as a lecturer in a university or college can be immensely rewarding. By nurturing the next generation of quantity surveyors, you contribute to the growth and development of the profession, leaving a lasting impact on the industry.
Why is Quantity Survey a good career?
If you are matched to the challenges of the profession, quantity surveying can be highly satisfying. The advantages of working in this field include:
- Quantity surveyors enjoy a healthy work-life balance because they normally work standard business hours and may be offered some leeway in scheduling.
- Possibilities for promotion and career growth exist for quantity surveyors who demonstrate competence in their field.
- Quantity surveyors have the potential to work on a wide range of projects, from private residences to large-scale commercial and infrastructural initiatives, allowing them to hone their skills in a variety of contexts.
- Quantity surveyors are in a strong financial position because their profession is expanding and there is a high demand for their services.
- Quantity surveyors have the potential to make a beneficial impact on society as a whole through their work in the building industry.
- The building business is booming, thus qualified quantity surveyors will be in high demand in the future years. This bodes well for the availability of suitable employment for those who meet the necessary criteria.
- The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) is just one of many professional organizations that recognizes the value of quantity surveyors in the building sector.
- Possibilities to work on projects abroad and obtain international experience as a result of the high demand for quantity surveyors around the world.
- The ability to work in varied environments and with different clients: Quantity surveyors can find employment with construction businesses, consultancies, and even government bodies.
- Opportunity for self-employment exists, as some quantity surveyors opt to go into business for themselves to have greater autonomy and independence in their profession.
Career path challenges to face as a Quantity Surveyor
Project management, budgeting, and assessing potential dangers are just a few of the many duties associated with quantity surveying. There are risks involved, just as there are in any profession. Problems that quantity surveyors could face include the following:
- Managing multiple tasks and priorities: Good time management skills are essential for quantity surveyors because they may have to oversee numerous projects and tasks at once.
- Dealing with changes and unexpected issues: It is important to address any adjustments or unforeseen problems that arise on a construction project as soon as possible. It is possible that quantity surveyors may need to be flexible and able to deal with issues as they emerge.
- Meeting tight deadlines: It can be hard for quantity surveyors to work under pressured deadlines when trying to complete a project on time.
- Working on construction sites: Construction sites can be dangerous places for quantity surveyors to work, so it’s possible they’ll have to spend some of their time there.
- Competition: It’s possible that there are more job seekers than open employment in the field.
How do you keep up with the latest trends and innovations in QS and the construction industry?
Join professional associations
Joining a professional organization or network is a great way to stay abreast of QS and construction industry developments. The information, books, events, training, and community that you find there can be invaluable to your career. The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), the Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB), and the Australian Institute of Quantity Surveyors (AIQS) are all examples of QS professional associations.).
Follow industry experts and influencers
Keeping up with developments in QS and the building business is facilitated in part by following prominent figures in these fields across various online mediums, such as Twitter, blogs, podcasts, and webinars. Professionals and thought leaders in the field may share their thoughts, ideas, and best practices in these. Author Paul Netscher, director David Ross of DR Quantity Surveying, and founder Christina Houlgrave of Women in BIM are some examples of influential and knowledgeable QS professionals.
Get on the lists of journals.
Subscribe to newsletters and journals to stay abreast of QS and building industry developments. These resources help keep you abreast of recent findings, studies, and news. The QS News, Construction Manager, and Building are just a few of the newsletters and publications published by QS.
Experiment with new tools and technologies
The sixth method of keeping up with QS and the building business is to try out new equipment and methods. These can help you work faster, more accurately, and more productively. The Building Information Model (BIM), Artificial Intelligence (AI), and Cloud Computing are all examples of cutting-edge techniques and technology that can be used in quality assurance.
Quantity surveying is a growing field that should benefit from the worldwide building boom. Due to the complexity and quick evolution of the construction sector, competent quantity surveying services are always in high demand. Thanks to advancements in technology, quantity surveyors will have access to superior tools like cutting-edge software and gear.
For these reasons, and many more, quantity surveying will continue to play a key role in ensuring that construction projects are completed on time and under budget. Whether you’re a customer, builder, or quantity surveyor, it’s vital to have a firm grip on the relevance and benefits of this topic.
Average AED 18,895 per month
Earning a charter, like that of a Chartered Quantity Surveyor (MRICS), is optional but can boost career prospects and demonstrate competence and professionalism. Professional opportunities can expand with a Chartered qualification, which is recognized around the world.
Yes, quantity surveyors can work internationally. The skills and knowledge acquired in quantity surveying are transferable across borders. However, it is important to familiarize oneself with local construction practices, regulations, and contractual requirements when working in different countries.
The use of Building Information Modelling (BIM) for cost estimation and quantity takeoff, the integration of sustainability principles into construction projects, and the increasing importance of data analytics and technology in cost management and project control are all examples of emerging trends in quantity surveying. Keeping abreast of these developments can improve one’s employment prospects and lead to greater professional development.
In simple terms, building surveyors are experts in the nitty-gritty details of the building and real estate industries. Quantity surveyors, meanwhile, focus on the industry’s bottom line, ensuring sure that each and every project is economically viable.