The differentiator between long-term success or failure often involves the integration of a cost management firm early in the project’s lifecycle. With a cost estimating lens, these professionals can set an accurate foundation for design and construction, minimizing delays, change orders, and unnecessary expenses. Plus, this approach keeps project integrity top of mind. It is important to keep in mind, though, that a statement of probable cost provides an estimate not an “exactimate,” since it is rare for a design to remain the same from inception through completion.
While a strong accuracy rate is often something stakeholders look for in a cost estimating firm, perhaps a more reliable measure of competence is how estimators use data to do their due diligence and support their findings. Creating an accurate statement of probable cost can be tricky due to the sheer number of variables involved. This is where experience matters. The more experienced a cost estimator is the more prepared they will be to accurately interpret the information they are given and identify potential trouble spots that could result in delays or change orders. The process is both science and art.
Strong relationships between architects, engineers, and cost managers are often based upon upfront involvement in projects, combined with clear and consistent communication. This enables an effective team dynamic and increases the chances of an award-winning project outcome, which is more likely to be followed by years of repeat business with project owners.