A quantity surveyor is the person responsible for working out what a building is going to cost and for making sure that construction costs and processes are managed as efficiently as possible.
A quantity surveyor can identify and collate the costs involved in any project to develop an overall budget. Quantity surveyors have to read and understand architectural and engineering drawings and ascertain if the proposed construction methods are suitable and economical. They monitor the changes in design and costs, and negotiate the payment to contractors for any changes. It is the final detailed estimate prepared by the quantity surveyors in consultation with a project architect, which forms the basis on which subsequent tenders can be evaluated.
Schedules of quantities are determined by interpreting plans and specifications produced by the design team. In cases where companies tender for construction projects, these schedules enable contractors to calculate competitive tender prices.
Once tenders have been accepted, the quantity surveyor provides cash flow data and monitors and controls actual expenditure for construction projects ranging from office blocks, schools, retail and residential developments, factories and hospitals, civil engineering projects and other industrial and resources projects – anywhere that major construction work is carried out.
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