What Do Cost Estimators Do?
Countless companies depend on cost estimators to aid in the determination of prices for a variety of products and services, placing a value on everything from construction supplies and labor to software and management resources. This position generally demands extensive focus and evaluation, with some people choosing to specialize in specific areas.The annual growth of this field is predicted to be 26% throughout the country, resulting in 11,800 job openings each year. The primary source of demand for this position is expected to come from companies involved in contracting and product manufacturing.
Cost Estimators Skills and Abilities
There is a vast amount of knowledge which must be acquired by anyone hoping to enter this field. Cost estimators must exhibit an exceptional understanding of mathematics and accounting in order to accurately process and evaluate data. You will also be expected to have a solid foundation in both engineering and programming as a result of constantly evolving technologies. Furthermore, you should be prepared to bare the weight of important business judgements through the use of reason and critical thinking.
Cost Estimators Duties
Cost estimators spend a lot of time gathering relevant information from different resources. This information must then be thoroughly analyzed and communicated to business owners or contractors in terms of project scope, supply costs and work activity. The completion of these duties will be executed primarily through the use of a computer to quickly process data and write specialized software. Other activities performed in this field might include:* Preparation of financial documents* Development of secure information systems* Negotiation of disputes
Cost Estimators Tools and Technology
This position relies heavily on the use of technology to ensure maximum efficiency and accuracy. If you are interested in becoming a cost estimator, be prepared to utilize complex, scientific programs on a regular basis in combination with standard accounting and financial analysis software. Database interfaces and project management tools are also commonly used in this field to research and coordinate business operations.In order to access these types of programs and perform job functions successfully, cost estimators typically use a range of electronic devices. Some of the most commonly used tools are:* Desktop computers* Laptop or notebook computers* Scanners and digital printers* PDA organizers or tablets
Education and Training for Cost Estimators
Most companies require you to obtain at least a Bachelor’s degree to be eligible for employment as a cost estimator. With the completion of this program, applicants can then obtain on-the-job training and work on progressively more difficult project evaluations. College courses which are recommended for people interested in becoming a cost estimator offer in-depth education on subjects such as Financial Administration and Management, General Business and Commerce or Construction Engineering. Students may also choose to graduate with a focus in a certain industry for more specialized positions.
Cost Estimators Salary
The average wage rate for cost estimators in the United States is $60,000 per year. The top 10% of workers in this field are estimated to gross over $99,000. The bottom 10%, on the other hand, can still expect to make at least $34,000 annually. Pay rates typically depend on the size of the company requesting service and the scope of the project being evaluated, but can also be affected by your level of experience.
Cost Estimators Jobs by Geography
Jobs for cost estimators are in high demand nationwide, but Nevada currently has the most openings, along with Florida and Arizona. However, if you take a position in Alaska, New Jersey or Connecticut, the average rate of pay will be significantly higher. Take the time to look into states with positive growth projections before choosing to pursue this field.