Focus on….Managing Quantity Surveyor

Celebrating the breadth of jobs available in the construction industry we will be publishing a series of articles, each focusing on a different role. Today’s focus is on the role of a Managing Quantity Surveyor.

Since gathering the information for this article Trevor Morgan has been promoted to Commercial Manager but this feature focuses on his previous role as a Managing Quantity Surveyor.  Trevor has been with Beard since November 2015.

I asked him some questions about his career within construction.

How long have you been in the industry?

33 years

How did you get into construction?

I was interested in gaining a vocational qualification and job experience when leaving school rather than going to university. I answered advertisements for trainee positions in the local paper from construction companies that offered continued learning and a salary!

What sort of things does your job entail?

Whilst there are some key monthly activities that must be undertaken such as financial and board reporting, project team meetings and internal management meetings, generally the days are varied.

A typical day might involve any combination of the following:

  • Advising/discussing key items of project risk/opportunity with relevant team members
  • Providing a commentary on tender contract conditions
  • Checking financial suitability on potential subcontractors
  • Agreeing contract and subcontract documentation
  • Reviewing significant areas of project variations
  • Attending project meetings with the client and/or subcontractors
  • Reviewing and sending emails relating to the latest challenges

What training has your job entailed?

Training on the principles of construction contract law, methods of procurement, construction technology and measurement, together with some training on the management of others.

What do you like most about your job?

Every day presents new challenge and a new learning experience. There is also a great camaraderie that exists within a team environment.

I have really enjoyed being an integral part of setting up the new Bristol Office; this has been very exciting as alongside the day job I have been part of assembling a new team. In this time, I have also progressed from Senior Quantity Surveyor to Managing Quantity Surveyor.

Are there any projects that have stood out in your career so far?

I worked on some large offices at Temple Quay for the Royal Bank of Scotland which involved a significant amount of traditional construction skills such as brickwork, stonework and leadwork. I was also involved in the installation of specialist operating theatres at Frenchay Hospital which required detailed coordination of services within an existing building.

More recently I have been involved in the upgrading of a listed building for the University of Bristol and am currently involved in the construction of the Being Brunel Museum which is being constructed on the quayside in Bristol, alongside the ss Great Britain. This project will, for the first time, bring a significant amount of information about Isambard Kingdom Brunel together in one place.

Do you think that construction has changed/is changing? What do you think will be of most significance in the coming years?

Health and Safety now plays a much more significant role in the construction of projects than when I first started in the industry, working conditions have improved tremendously and remuneration is much better.

Skill shortages are the biggest challenge that faces the industry going forward and this needs to be addressed.

Do you have any thoughts about how these shortages could/should be addressed?

I believe the solution should continue to be a joint initiative between the established building contractors and the UK Government. Together they should ensure that more sponsored apprenticeship places are available leading to greater numbers acquiring traditional building skills. Similarly increased opportunities and support should be made available for those who wish study a construction based degree on a part time basis or for those who wish to undertake a year out while on a full time degree course.

Do you feel working for Beard differs from elsewhere you have worked, and if so how?

Yes, Beard are very open and friendly with very helpful staff. They do not overly rely on written procedures and give individuals the ability to work under their own initiative.

I would absolutely recommend working for Beard.

What would you say to anyone considering a career in construction?

If you want an interesting career join up!


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