When you are ill, you go and see a Doctor, right? A professional who has years of training and experience and has the knowledge to take care of you and help you get back on your feet. It’s the same if your car is making a funny noise. You take it to a mechanic; a professional who has years of experience fixing cars which are making funny noises. So why not go to a professional when undertaking a construction project? I’m not talking about a builder or construction company, an architect or solicitor, which are all used in abundance anyway. But what about the overlooked professional? The man or woman who has spent multiple years attaining their degree, gaining work experience and knowledge and is most of the time overlooked because people presume that they don’t need one or that their role is not needed within this current construction project.
I’m talking about a Quantity Surveyor!
Most people outside of the construction field of work won’t know what a Quantity Surveyor is. They won’t fully understand what their role is, or they may even ask what they do! However, for construction professionals, a Quantity Surveyor is a well-known role, and yet, they aren’t involved in some construction projects as much as they should be. For many Quantity Surveyors, the truth is that construction clients may only employ them when it’s too late and they’ve hit a problem and need expert help!
For those who have used the services of a Quantity Surveyor, or who are considering undertaking a construction project in the future, keep reading for the 5 reasons why employing an RICS qualified Chartered Quantity Surveyor on your project is a must!
Reason Number 1 – Qualifications
All Chartered Quantity Surveyors have the relevant training and qualifications needed to call themselves a ‘Chartered’ Surveyor. This generally starts with a 4-year full time sandwich, or part-time, degree course in Quantity Surveying, whereby they are awarded a Bachelor of Science degree and can move onto the next steps of their training. From this, the individual has to spend a minimum of 2 years, outside of their degree time, of recorded and supervised experience in their role of Quantity Surveyor before being eligible to join the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS). Once hitting this minimum 2-year time, the individual can apply to become a Member and will then attend an Assessment of Professional Competence (APC) interview with the RICS before being allowed to call themselves a Member of the RICS (MRICS). Once the individual has been a member for a minimum of 10-years, they can then apply to become a Fellow of the RICS (FRICS), the highest rank an individual can achieve. To do this, they must submit a dissertation of past roles and experiences as a Quantity Surveyor, and multiple other details before being accepted as a Fellow.
Reason Number 2 – Client comfort
Once the individual has completed their degree, the 2-year minimum work experience and passed their APC interview, they are now officially a Member of the RICS. This not only provides them with a better standing within the construction community and identifies them as a professional, but it also means they have gone through a rigorous training regime, have been tested on their professional knowledge, and have the backing of the RICS behind them.
Reason Number 3 – Mandatory insurance cover
All practicing Chartered Quantity Surveyors are required by RICS to take out specific insurance. This insurance is called Professional Indemnity Insurance (PI), and it protects professionals from potential claims for loss caused by negligence. This not only protects the professional for any legal claims or disputes but depending upon the policy taken out, it can insure the professional for up to a certain amount of money, i.e., they may be personally insured to work on projects up to the amount of £1million. For more information on this, or if you are thinking about taking out PI, head to https://www.markeluk.com/business-insurance/professional-indemnity-insurance/professional-indemnity-insurance-explained
Reason Number 4 – Up-to-date knowledge
As Members or Fellows of RICS, Chartered Quantity Surveyors are required to uphold a certain standard of practice. This means that they must keep up to date on current standards, legislation and working practices to perform their role successfully and represent the RICS and their clients to the highest standard possible. With the ever-changing and updated standards of work, every professional must adhere to, having a qualified Member or Fellow of the RICS working on your project ensures you’re getting the most up-to-date knowledge and the Quantity Surveyor you employ is working at the highest standard; for themselves, you and as a representation of the RICS.
Reason Number 5 – Proper back-up support
Being a Member or Fellow of the RICS not only holds the Chartered Quantity Surveyor in higher esteem and opens more professional doors and opportunities, it also means that if something does go wrong, you have somewhere to obtain additional support. RICS have a dedicated complaints procedure which you can use if the individual you employed is not working or upholding the standards you or the RICS have outlined they must do. Not only does this professional body enable you to complain to others who have the same practical experience as the individual, but they also follow the same rules and regulations as qualified Chartered Quantity Surveyors.
So, are you still thinking about overlooking the hiring of a Chartered Quantity Surveyor?
As we’ve mentioned in the above reasons, a Chartered Quantity Surveyor has many hoops to jump through before becoming an RICS qualified individual. And to do this, they must have years of experience and knowledge in order to pass the interview and therefore represent this professional body.
If you’re contemplating starting, or are in the middle of a construction project, or if you are just drawing up the relevant plans, and you still don’t have a Chartered Quantity Surveyor on board, why not?
After all, this is the person who will look after your money!