Quantity surveyors are in charge of construction project costing ranging from the initial estimates of the project to the cost of the final acquisition of materials. Surveying jobs are diverse and the associated roles are varied; however, the core of these positions focus on the provision of value for money for clients while adhering to the strict regulations currently governing the construction industry.
The day to day responsibilities of the quantity surveyor range from roles inside an office where one will meet with clients and project personnel to working on construction sites. While the nature of construction work means that no two projects will be the same, a typical day on a site will involve the following:
- preparation of contractions, such as pointing out required amount of materials needed.
- managing the on-going cost analysis of construction repair work and maintenance.
- examining the feasibility studies of customer requests.
- analysis of the completed construction work and arranging payment to project contractors.
- allocation and delegation of work to contractors.
- visiting different areas of the site, assessments, and projects of future work.
While quantity surveyors do perform similar tasks in their roles, it is possible for a quantity surveyor to specialize in a specific area of the construction industry. For example, an individual may choose to gain expert skills in property taxation, maintenance of existing properties, costing advice, and application to funding resources.
What Are The Educational Requirements?
To enter a career as a quantity surveyor, it is essential that you hold a suitable qualification such as a relevant university degree or an accreditation from a professional association, such as the Royal Institute for Chartered Surveyors. Relevant university degrees include those with courses in construction, surveying, civil, and structural engineering. The RICS website provides a list of university courses suitable for people to begin their path to a career as a quantity surveyor. The average duration to complete an undergraduate degree in this field is three to four years of full-time study.
Individuals graduating with degrees that are not listed with the RICS have the option of completing a post-graduate conversion course. This will transfer any existing qualifications into the construction industry. Post-graduate conversion courses typically take one year of full-time study to complete.
While it is possible to enter an associated role in surveying without any RCIS accredited qualification, it is necessary to complete a qualification to gain a professional position in the discipline. For example, technical surveyors do not require professional degrees; however, to become a quantity surveyor you will require an accredited qualification.
Starting positions in the quantity surveying field typically present with an annual salary of approximately £20,000 to £25,000. As one gains experience, the amount will rise and experienced professionals can earn between £30,000 and £45,000 per annum. The most senior surveyors are known to earn approximately £50,000 to £60,000 per year. A quantity surveyor is important to a project and so can ask for a good salary – if you don’t believe me read this post from PSR.
What Are The Skills Required?
Becoming a quantity surveyor is far more than having the correct academic background. While relevant credentials are necessary, employers search for individuals that are excellent communicators and possess strong numeracy skills. Given the growing demands of the construction industry with its frequent challenges, it is important that you demonstrate unique approaches to problem solving and negotiation skills across all levels of construction settings. Obviously, it is important to have a passion for construction and an understanding of the industry; however, work experience is also a valuable asset when applying for a quantity surveyor position.