What are the main functions of professional quantity surveyors?
Quantity surveying is now not merely limited to bills of quantities and measurements. With increasing demand posed by real estate businesses, property owners, and others, the service sector has turned out to be more dynamic. The new business challenges, evolving IT and economic scenarios, including privatization and other developments, are propelling this change. Hence, today, quantity surveyors seek more diversified roles in new areas, including benchmarking, procurement, risk management, value management, costing, and auditing, among others. The client is also in need of the one-stop destination service providers who have a more integrated and all-encompassing approach towards consultancy and management services. The new consultancies can work alongside the contractors, developers, and clients and help reduce the uncertainties for various stakeholders of the real estate, construction, and other industries. A professional quantity surveyor firm can provide services in areas including:
- Project monitoring
- Change management
- Project supervision
- Risk analysis
- Risk management
Quantity surveyors can hence play several roles in the construction and other industries, and many of them may represent the clients in multiple facets of project management. They have extensive and latest knowledge in relevant areas, including construction, engineering, architecture, and others. Their services are essential for achieving the project objectives within the given costs and prescribed time limits. They may also be known by the names like project control consultants, cost consultants, or in some cases, can work as client’s project managers as well. Some of the crucial areas where the services of a consultant quantity surveyor make a difference are given below.
The quantity surveyors may have specialized knowledge and may also be more updated with the latest in-service practices and construction technology, something which proves quite valuable for the developers. In most cases, developers are more considerate of the entire project life cost as they will benefit more with the increase in rental or lease income and from elements including long-term maintenance. However, specialist advice helps them choose better in between the options.
Quantity surveyors may also act as a cost consultant. They may be involved in areas including financial evaluation, feasibility analysis, as well as market intelligence throughout the different stages of the life cycle of a project. Consultants help developers add functions and design elements without compromising on the effectiveness while keeping the cost in control.
The quantity surveyors also coordinate with the construction project managers and others that could bring them the efficient procurement solutions and enhance the benefits. Some of the critical areas where a consultant quantity surveyor may provide valuable contributions include adopting the right contract form and deciding on the pricing, among others.
Quantity surveyors help in the standardization of business processes. They generate reports based on the project data that is collected and provide proper indexation to it. The analysis helps developers understand the cost components better. They are hence able to denote and control costs better in the different and other projects as well. The vital contribution of quantity surveyors towards benchmarking helps in the improvement of spatial planning and to evaluate the spending. The quantity surveyors may also be involved in areas including variation assessment, cash flow provisions, expected cost of the final project, and in the assessment of variations.
Some of the specific areas of a professional quantity surveyor job include:
- Cost consulting: They help in feasibility studies, project budgeting, contractor selection, tender review, recommendations on areas including project payments, negotiations of the change orders, and contractual claims, among others.
- Mortgage monitoring: They help in project budget sufficiency verification, borrower payment verification, and progress reports, among others.
- Value management: This includes reviewing the project program, cost and designs, introducing the value management programs, evaluating and analyzing the different processes and underlying components.
- Life cycle costing: It includes the discounted cash flows, life cycle cost plan, and sensitivity analysis.
Quantity surveyors can help developers avoid many different kinds of risks and pitfalls. Construction and real estate have always involved huge costs. They can be the key to the generation of more accurate cost projections and help in the pre-planning of budget, even ahead of time. This helps developers avoid many different kinds of surprises that may be unpleasant. The estimates also help in forecasting time and prevent delays.