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In all cases though, a strong resume that draws attention to experience, judgement, and analytical skills can set you apart from the pack.
To craft this crucial document, consult the accompanying guide, which provides a brief overview of the resume creation process for applicants in this field, plus a collection of estimator resume samples that can keep you on the right track if you’re searching for this kind of work. These information can help you understand which background details to include in your profile, the kind of formatting you’ll need to use, and the common job search mistakes you’ll want to avoid.
What to Include in an Estimator Resume
There’s no one concrete recipe for whipping up the perfect estimator recipe. After all, what you include will vary depending on your career history, education background and abilities. For example, an estimator for a roofing company and an estimator for a collision company or insurance provider will create different resumes and highlight different skill sets and credentials.
No to mention, you’ll want to tailor your document to the needs and expectations of your specific employer. Notice how each of the featured estimator resume samples has been customized to a specific type of audience.
Once you’ve completed some preliminary research on your target company, you’ll start creating each of the sections that are typically included in an estimator resume:
- Resume Summary
- Education Section
- Work History Section
- Skills Section
As you begin the resume creation process, you’ll need to make a choice between two very different formatting options: functional and chronological. As you review the estimator resume samples featured here, you’ll notice that some candidates choose one of these options and some choose the other—both are perfectly valid choices, but your specific background may push you in either direction.
Chronological resumes provide a clear documentation of your career story by listing each of your previously held positions one by one. Most candidates begin with their most recent position and move back into the past as they go down the page, citing their job titles, employers, start and end dates, and special accomplishments associated with each role.
Functional resumes, by comparison, offer a list of skills and capabilities, followed by a briefly summarized job history with no start and end dates or special accomplishments attached to each role.
Chronological resumes typically make sense for a candidate with a straightforward job history, a steadily increasing progression of responsibilities, and no large gaps in his or her timeline. If your career follows a clear arc and your most recent position also happens to be your most impressive and relevant role, this may be the right format for you.
Functional resumes work better for candidates who would rather focus on isolated skill sets and not draw attention to the linear aspects of their career arcs. As you review these estimator resume samples, imagine yourself in the shoes of an employer and consider your response to each of the two different formats.
How to Write the Estimator Resume Summary Statement
Like the estimator resume samples in this set, your resume should begin with a clear opening summary statement. This statement should occur at the top of the page and should highlight the most important aspects of your background and credentials, including the specific skills and details that set you apart from your competition. Your summary should also provide a forecast of the information that will follow. Here are a few examples:
Expert cost estimator who oversees the design and implementation of back office management systems including enterprise resource management, manufacturing resource management, HR, accounting, and payroll systems ranging between 2.5 and 3.5 million dollars.
Experienced project manager for major construction contractor, providing constant communication with key accounts to ensure excellent customer relationship management and quality, on-time, efficient delivery of products and services.
Seasoned Cost estimator for national maintenance service provider, producing accurate estimates for major retail clients in search of three to five year internal and external maintenance service contracts. Estimates include all expenses, materials, and labor for floor resurfacing, landscaping, and snow removal.
How to Write the Cost Estimator Education Section
As illustrated by the cost estimator resume samples, the summary section of the resume will typically be followed by the education section. You can use the information under this subheading to showcase your academic accomplishments, including the schools you attended, the degrees you earned and your courses of study.
For cost estimators, these may include accounting or financial management degrees, business degrees or MBAs, or graduate courses in project management or business planning. List each institution you attended, followed by the degree or certification you earned.
You can also list your GPA and completion dates if you choose, but not all employers expect or require this information. Check the post carefully before you decide to include or omit these optional details.
Cost estimators sometimes carry certifications and licensing credentials in addition to standard academic degrees. These can be listed in the education section or in a separate section of their own, where they’re less likely to be overlooked.
How to Write the Estimator Work Experience Section
The estimator resume samples in this set demonstrate the variety of formats that job seekers can use to highlight their previous positions and relevant experience. As mentioned above, you can chose to present your work history using the classic chronological format or the efficient functional format, which highlights specific skill sets rather than the specifics and dates of previous positions.
If you choose to rely on the chronological version, you’ll create a separate entry for each of your past jobs, from the most to the least recent. Within each entry, you’ll share the title of your role name of your employer, location of your employer and dates of employment, followed by a short bulleted list of your major responsibilities during that time. You’ll end each entry with a brief description of your most important accomplishments within each of these past positions.
If you choose the functional format instead, your work experience section will be a much briefer summary of your past positions with no attached dates, specific responsibilities, or on-the-job accomplishments. This format will allow you to get right to the point and highlight your specific experiences, not the employers you worked for or the nuts and bolts of each tenure. But beware: some employers resent this format since it allows candidates to gloss over specific details that hiring managers may prefer to see.
Then, you’ll create a longer, more expanded skills and accomplishments section that details your most important responsibilities and assets.
Action Verbs to Include in Your Estimator Work Experience Section
How to Write the Estimator Resume Skills Section
A strong, effective estimator resume needs a strong effective skills section, since hiring managers in this field are often more interested in what candidates can do in the future than what they’ve done in the past. You’ll use this section to highlight your specific areas of expertise, including your software skills, project management skills, budgeting and budget resource allocation, presentation, and coordination expertise.
If you know how to conduct complex cost assessments based on a huge number of divergent factors, and you’re skilled in presenting this information to an audience of laypeople with no specific industry knowledge, your reviewers will want to know this. They’ll also want to know about your executive management skills, analytical skills, and specific communication skills.
Should I Include References in my Estimator Resume
Some employers in search of estimators specifically request a list of references with the initial application submission, and if the post for your target position asks for this list, go ahead and attach it as a separate document when you send your resume and cover letter.
But more likely, your employers will request this list at a later point in the process ‘ so you don’t need to include references in your resume. Once you’ve made it past the first few rounds of resume review, and possibly after your first interview session, your employers will ask for the names and contact information for previous employers or others who can describe your skill sets. Have this list ready so you can send it immediately upon request.
As you select your references, choose people who know you well and can speak directly about your work ethic, the accuracy of your estimates, or your detail orientation. Choose people who you can trust, and be sure to let them know in advance that you’ll be using their names for this purpose.
Estimator Resume Fails: Mistakes to Avoid
As you review the estimator resume samples and start creating a resume of your own, watch out for these common mistakes:
- Irrelevant information: Too often, candidates emphasize background details that don’t apply or don’t make sense to the employers they’re trying to attract. Make sure your credentials clearly apply to the job at hand.
- Exaggerations: Some estimator and project management candidates start inflating their accomplishments as their job searches drag on. A 50,000 dollar project becomes a million dollar project over time, and savvy employers get skeptical. Don’t let this happen. Just be honest.
- Missed opportunities: Don’t miss a single opportunity to grab the attention of your reviewers. Gather your notes and review your background and accomplishments carefully before you start to write.
Job Prospects in the Cost Estimator Industry
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employers offered about 202,200 new jobs in this field in 2012. And between 2012 and 2022, these numbers are expected to rise by about 26 percent, which is far above the average expected growth across all industries.
Median salaries in this field level off at about 58,860 USD per year, or 28.30 per hour. At this point, entry-level candidates in this field typically need a bachelor’s degree and shouldn’t expect their employers to provide on-the-job training.