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Cost Estimator

# What Do Cost Estimator Do?

Job Description & Duties 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.

## Life As a Cost Estimator: What Do They Do?

• Visit site and record information about access, drainage and topography, and availability of services such as water and electricity.
• Collect historical cost data to estimate costs for current or future products.
• Conduct special studies to develop and establish standard hour and related cost data or to effect cost reduction.
• Establish and maintain tendering process, and conduct negotiations.
• Analyze blueprints and other documentation to prepare time, cost, materials, and labor estimates.
• Prepare cost and expenditure statements and other necessary documentation at regular intervals for the duration of the project.

## What Every Cost Estimator Should Know

When polled, Cost Estimators say the following skills are most frequently used in their jobs:

Mathematics: 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.

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.

Speaking: 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.

## Types of Cost Estimator Jobs

• Cost Engineer
• Estimator
• Procurement Technician
• Job Estimator
• Crating and Moving Estimator

## Are There Job Opportunities for Cost Estimators?

There were about 217,900 jobs for Cost Estimator in 2016 (in the United States). New jobs are being produced at a rate of 10.5% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 22,900 new jobs for Cost Estimator by 2026. The BLS estimates 24,400 yearly job openings in this field.

The states with the most job growth for Cost Estimator are Utah, Arizona, and Nevada. Watch out if you plan on working in Maine, Vermont, or Alaska. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

## What is the Average Salary of a Cost Estimator

The typical yearly salary for Cost Estimators is somewhere between \$38,060 and \$107,940.

Cost Estimators who work in District of Columbia, Hawaii, or Alaska, make the highest salaries.

### How much do Cost Estimators make in each U.S. state?

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama \$59,870
Arizona \$66,410
Arkansas \$61,500
California \$78,190
Connecticut \$74,910
Delaware \$68,690
District of Columbia \$93,880
Florida \$62,370
Georgia \$67,190
Hawaii \$82,390
Idaho \$60,400
Illinois \$66,480
Indiana \$65,790
Iowa \$62,410
Kansas \$66,500
Kentucky \$65,460
Louisiana \$67,650
Maine \$61,960
Maryland \$71,650
Massachusetts \$77,670
Michigan \$63,810
Minnesota \$65,520
Mississippi \$60,360
Missouri \$67,620
Montana \$58,960
New Hampshire \$67,610
New Jersey \$75,340
New Mexico \$59,580
New York \$75,730
North Carolina \$62,590
North Dakota \$69,010
Ohio \$64,700
Oklahoma \$64,300
Oregon \$71,490
Pennsylvania \$67,330
Rhode Island \$67,470
South Carolina \$63,520
South Dakota \$54,860
Tennessee \$63,770
Texas \$73,950
Utah \$65,940
Vermont \$65,790
Virginia \$74,160
Washington \$77,510
West Virginia \$63,890
Wisconsin \$57,990
Wyoming \$76,670

## What Tools & Technology do Cost Estimators Use?

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Cost Estimators:

• Microsoft Excel
• Microsoft Word
• Microsoft Office
• Microsoft PowerPoint
• Microsoft Outlook
• Microsoft Access
• SAP
• Microsoft Project
• Microsoft Visio
• Microsoft Dynamics
• Intuit QuickBooks
• Oracle JD Edwards EnterpriseOne
• Dassault Systemes CATIA
• Oracle Primavera Enterprise Project Portfolio Management
• Oracle Hyperion
• Sage 50 Accounting
• Autodesk Revit
• Trimble SketchUp Pro

## How to Become a Cost Estimator

Learn what Cost Estimator education requirements there are.

## Where Cost Estimators Work

The table below shows the approximate number of Cost Estimators employed by various industries.

Those thinking about becoming a Cost Estimator might also be interested in the following careers:

Are you already one of the many Cost Estimator in the United States? If you’re thinking about changing careers, these fields are worth exploring:

## References:

Image Credit: Mike Moore via public domain

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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