Cost Estimators

Architecture & Construction > Design/Pre-Construction

Projected Growth: Faster than average

Projected Job Openings

Considerable Preparation Needed

Job Description

Your job is to Prepare cost estimates for product manufacturing, construction projects, or services to aid management in bidding on or determining price of product or service. May specialize according to particular service performed or type of product manufactured.

Common job titles of Cost Estimators include:

Experience and Education

A considerable amount of work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is needed for this occupation. For example, a person in this occupation must complete four years of college and work for several years in industry to be considered qualified.

  • 63.64% said they needed a Bachelor's Degree.

  • 18.18% said they needed a Master's Degree.


    Analyze blueprints and other documentation to prepare time, cost, materials, and labor estimates.

    Establish and maintain tendering process, and conduct negotiations.

    Prepare cost and expenditure statements and other necessary documentation at regular intervals for the duration of the project.

    Prepare estimates used by management for purposes such as planning, organizing, and scheduling work.

    Confer with engineers, architects, owners, contractors, and subcontractors on changes and adjustments to cost estimates.

    Consult with clients, vendors, personnel in other departments, or construction foremen to discuss and formulate estimates and resolve issues.

    Collect historical cost data to estimate costs for current or future products.

    Visit site and record information about access, drainage and topography, and availability of services such as water and electricity.

    Conduct special studies to develop and establish standard hour and related cost data or to effect cost reduction.

    Set up cost monitoring and reporting systems and procedures.

    Prepare and maintain a directory of suppliers, contractors and subcontractors.

    Review material and labor requirements to decide whether it is more cost-effective to produce or purchase components.

    Assess cost effectiveness of products, projects or services, tracking actual costs relative to bids as the project develops.

    Prepare estimates for use in selecting vendors or subcontractors.


Tablet computers


Personal digital assistants PDA

Personal computers

Notebook computers

Desktop computers


Autodesk Revit

Computer aided design and drafting CADD software

ConEst IntelliBid Design Build

ConEst SureCount

Trimble SketchUp Pro

Apple AppleWorks

Assured Software JPP

All Technologies

Choice Job Cost

ConEst BidTrac

ConEst Electrical Formulas

ConEst Intellibid

ConEst JobTrac

ConEst Permit Trac

ConEst T&M Billing Manager

Construction Management Software ProEst

Corel QuattroPro

Cost accounting software

Cost estimation software

CPR International GeneralCOST Estimator

CPR Visual Estimator

Decisioneering Crystal Ball

EFI Hagen OA

Galorath SEER

Galorath SEER-SEM

HCSS HeavyBid

HCSS HeavyJob

IBM Costimater

IBM Lotus 1-2-3

Laserfiche Avante

Logic Software Easy Projects.NET

Microsoft Business Contact Manager

Palisade @Risk

PRICE Sytems TruePlanning

Primavera Cost Management


Resources Calculations Incorporated SoftCost

Sage 100 Contractor

Sage 300 Construction and Real Estate

SAP BusinessObjects Crystal Reports

Softstar Costar COCOMO II

Software AG

WinEstimator WinEst

Xactware Xactimate



Using mathematics to solve problems.

Reading Comprehension

Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Critical Thinking

Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.


Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Judgment and Decision Making

Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Active Listening

Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.


Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Active Learning

Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.

Complex Problem Solving

Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.

Systems Analysis

Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.

Management of Financial Resources

Determining how money will be spent to get the work done, and accounting for these expenditures.

Social Perceptiveness

Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.


Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.


Bringing others together and trying to reconcile differences.

Systems Evaluation

Identifying measures or indicators of system performance and the actions needed to improve or correct performance, relative to the goals of the system.


Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.


Persuading others to change their minds or behavior.

Time Management

Managing one's own time and the time of others.


Listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Oral Comprehension

Communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Oral Expression

Combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).

Cognitive Abilities › Idea Generation and Reasoning Abilities › Inductive Reasoning

Choose the right mathematical methods or formulas to solve a problem.

Cognitive Abilities › Quantitative Abilities › Mathematical Reasoning

Add, subtract, multiply, or divide quickly and correctly.

Cognitive Abilities › Quantitative Abilities › Number Facility

Read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Written Comprehension

Apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.

Cognitive Abilities › Idea Generation and Reasoning Abilities › Deductive Reasoning

See details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).

Sensory Abilities › Visual Abilities › Near Vision

TEST Your output This field is empty or does not exist This field is empty or does not exist

Occupation Sections


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