What Is A Construction Estimator?

Construction hard hat next to computer

One of the most important roles in the construction process is the construction estimator, which often goes unrecognized.

A construction estimator can make the difference between a company losing millions of dollars or a company having an accurate bid on the overall cost of a construction project.

Because building projects don’t come with automatically assigned prices, it’s up to the construction estimator to figure that out for the company, so having a good one is crucial.

The Role of a Construction Estimator 

Construction estimators are the people responsible for determining the total cost of each construction project.

Before any work begins, they make sure the project can happen for the appropriate cost. In the industry, they may also be referred to as “cost planners” since their main job is to estimate the cost of a project.

Using drawings, plans, and other specifications for a project, the construction estimator estimates how much the project would cost. The estimator will prepare an estimate based on the projected cost of materials, equipment, and labor for the project.

There are a number of indirect costs that the estimator will also determine and factor into the overall cost estimation. They will make a directory of suppliers, contractors, and subcontractors, and they continue to work with the project during its lifespan to ensure it is on track in terms of the actual cost.

Ultimately, they are one of the key players in determining whether a company will win or lose a bid for a construction project.

Skills and Experience

Construction estimators must have an eye for detail and a keen sense of accuracy, along with strong mathematical and analytical skills. 

Organizational skills, critical thinking skills, and excellent communication are also essential qualities for a construction estimator to have.

Usually, the estimator has a background in construction design, such as engineering or architecture, or a background in other fields of study that are closely connected to the construction industry.

Importance of a Construction Estimator 

Construction estimators help project stakeholders determine how profitable and possible a project is for them.

Having an accurate estimation of the cost of a project also helps to hold the developer and contractor accountable. With an accurate estimate, all parties involved in the construction process can stay focused on staying under budget and getting the project completed on time.

Construction companies must have access to a good construction estimator in order to have the best chance of winning a project bid that they are feasibly capable of completing.

Finding a Good Estimator is Hard

Hiring a quality estimator is critical. If you hire an inexperienced or low-quality cost estimator, you run the risk of going over budget due to not having an accurate cost estimate.

Cost overruns mean your client will have to pay more than they expected based on the cost estimation they agreed on for this project. This can do a lot of damage to your company’s reputation, especially if you find that you repeatedly struggle to find a good, accurate cost estimator. Furthermore, the estimator can make the difference between accurately bidding on the cost of a project or causing your company to lose millions of dollars

Some construction firms will place the responsibility of estimating costs onto their project managers instead of hiring a separate construction estimator, which can also cause problems. The cost estimator for your project should be someone whose area of expertise is directly in cost estimation for construction projects. This should also be their only job on the project so that they fully focus on creating the highest quality and most accurate estimate possible.

Why is a quality cost estimator so difficult to find? They are one of the hardest roles to recruit for because good estimators are highly valued by their current companies. Construction companies are willing to do a lot to keep a quality estimator, which means most are not actively looking for new roles.  

Diamond Peak Recruiting is Here to Help 

At Diamond Peak Recruiting, we know how difficult it can be to find just the right person to fill your construction estimator role.

Our team of highly trained and specialized remote recruiters uses a combination of local networks, artificial intelligence, and other advanced software to place talent quickly and efficiently.

We have decades of experience and use a results-driven process to ensure your company is matched with talent that is the best fit for your open role.

Cost estimators are just one of the many types of positions that we have helped fill throughout our years of experience.

Contact us today by giving us a phone call or filling out the form on our website for help finding a quality estimator.