Cost Estimating and Tricks of the Trade - A Practical Approach
Timothy D. Blackburn, MBA, P.E.
This is a practical
course in the area of estimating. This course covers the fundamentals of cost
estimating from a practical perspective, based on the Instructor's experience
both in the Consultant and Owner environments. In addition to the fundamentals,
the course also addresses the levels of design/scope development needed at each
phase and the associated estimate accuracy expectation. Practical explanatory
charts and tables are provided. Common pitfalls are discussed. "Tricks-of-the-trade"
are provided, which will increase the likelihood of a reliable estimate.
This course includes
a multiple choice quiz at the end, which
is designed to enhance the understanding of the course materials.
which is designed to enhance the understanding of the course materials.
Upon completion of this course, the student will be able to understand the following and apply:
The intended audiences
are engineers, architects, project managers, cost estimators, contractors, owners,
and others interested in or required to develop estimates. Primarily, those
who are not estimators but are asked to be involved in estimating will benefit
most, including management individuals that request estimates.
Benefit to Attendees
The attendee should be able to understand the essentials of estimating, expected design/scope at various levels with corresponding estimate accuracies, apply "tricks-of-the-trade," and avoid common pitfalls.
We as engineers,
consultants, owner reps, and project managers are frequently asked to provide
estimates. How do we go about this? What minimum scoping/design is needed to
achieve a stated estimate accuracy? What accuracy can we be reasonably expected
to attain at a given scope/design level? This course will answer these questions
and provide practical insights to developing meaningful estimates. The course
will also offer advice to avoid common pitfalls and exclusions from estimates.
This course is filled with practical insight from the Instructor's considerable
experience with both the Consultant and Owner's perspectives. The course discusses
estimates from the earliest stages to those with well-developed scopes.
Course Content The
course content is in a PDF file (96 KB) Cost
Estimating and Tricks of the Trade - A Practical Approach. You need
to open or download this document to study this course.
The course content is in a PDF file (96 KB) Cost Estimating and Tricks of the Trade - A Practical Approach. You need to open or download this document to study this course.
2. What is an estimate?
3. Popular Estimating Misconceptions
4. The Truth about Estimating
5. Sources of Estimating Data
6. Methods of Estimating
7. forgotten Costs
8. Contingency - what it is used for?
9. Present Value Calculations
10. More Examples
11. Estimating during the Planning and Design Phases
a. Fundamental Scope and Budget
b. Schematic Design
c. Design Development (Preliminary Engineering)
d. Construction Documents ( Final Design) - Control Estimate
13. Tricks of the Trade/Lessons Learned
14. Typical Costs Realized - Categories as a Percent of Total
15. Course Summary
In this course we have learned practical estimating approaches and theory. Remember to develop scope necessary for the required estimate accuracy, and include all the costs associated with the project. Avoid misconceptions and pitfalls. Apply the tricks-of-the trade. Think "total cost" - Owners typically don't want elements of a project cost with gaps remaining, but need the total required. Don't forget those things often left out!
Once you finish studying the above course content, you need to take a quiz to obtain the PDH credits.