The role of cost estimators in UK construction; a case for and steps towards an estimating profession

Hackett, James Arthur (2011). The role of cost estimators in UK construction; a case for and steps towards an estimating profession. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.


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Estimators and Quantity Surveyors (QS) have pivotal roles in the profitability of construction contracts; however, only QSs have professional recognition. Comparisons between these groups suggested that this may be an anomaly. The purpose of this thesis was to consider the role of the Estimator relative to the accepted criteria attaching to professional status.

To achieve this, definitions of a profession were used to compare QSs and Estimators in terms of remuneration, education and professional representation. A statistical analysis on each of these conditions suggested that there was no significant difference in terms of salary offered or education required, by employers. Further investigation, however, did reveal considerable differences in educational and professional opportunities, favouring QSs. With regard to the key defining criteria of a profession and the consideration given by employers, the results indicated that there was no difference between the two groups.

Further surveys developed proposals for an Estimator “Body of Knowledge” (BoK) and Training Needs Analysis (TNA) and also found a changing role in meeting diverse client-driven procurement methods and employer requirements. As this demonstrated a case for professional recognition to be considered then these proposals could be used as a platform for further development.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Engineering & Physical Sciences
School or Department: School of Engineering, Department of Civil Engineering
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: T Technology > TA Engineering (General). Civil engineering (General)


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