What does an Estimator do?
Estimators often visit construction sites and speak with customers to learn about the scope of future projects. They create estimates by considering material costs and the complexity of the project. Estimators also predict overtime and staffing costs by thinking about project deadlines and explaining the reasons for costs to customers. Estimators allow companies to expand their facilities and build new ones without exceeding their budgets. They help reduce costs by researching average prices or pay rates, and they build relationships with vendors and subcontractors so they can give accurate price estimates to customers.
Estimator skills and qualifications
Successful Estimators are friendly, polite, and professional. They must be able to work under pressure, meet strict deadlines, work independently, and pay attention to a variety of complex details. Estimators also need to deal with many different types of customers. Some skills and qualifications for Estimators include:
- Outstanding customer service skills
- Excellent written and verbal communication skills
- Ability to adapt quickly to unforeseen situations
- Understanding of basic math, how to keep track of expenses, and how to follow a budget
- Good sense of direction and the ability to use maps or smartphone apps to find jobsites
- Extensive understanding of construction methods and materials
Estimator experience requirements
In most circumstances, new Estimators should have at least a year of experience. Applicants without previous experience may have a lower salary range. Some positions, however, may require candidates who have worked as Estimators for more than five years.
Estimator education and training requirements
Most Estimator jobs require a secondary school diploma or GED. Regardless of industry, some candidates may hold an associate’s or bachelor’s degree in fields including engineering, civil engineering, or construction engineering. Candidates with experience in carpentry, plumbing, electrical work, or a similar field in place of more extensive formal education can make appealing candidates as well. No certificates are required by law, but the best applicants often have certifications from the Canadian Institute of Quantity Surveyors. Most new hires will need on-the-job training.
Estimator salary expectations
According to Indeed Salaries, the average salary for an Estimator in Canada is $71,223 per year. Rates vary depending on factors like location, their experience, skill, and education levels, and the employer.
Job description samples for similar positions
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