You might hear people say Quantity Surveying is a well-paid occupation. But how much does a QS actually earn? In this article we will explore the potential salary expectations at each level of Quantity Surveying.
Disclaimer: The figures in this article are based on national averages in the UK. Pay can vary substantially based on a number of different factors, with the most influential being location.
1. Apprentice or Trainee (£17,500): If you’re fortunate enough to secure a position with an employer who is willing to fund your education, it is likely you will join as an Apprentice or Trainee QS. You might think this is a low salary – but unlike people who are studying full-time at university, you’ll be gaining valuable on-the-job experience while receiving a free education! We believe this is an outstanding opportunity for anyone aiming to get their career started in Quantity Surveying.
2. Assistant or Graduate (£27,500): This role is for people who’ve just completed a degree in Quantity Surveying or received a promotion from Trainee/Apprentice. At this level, you will likely start to obtain responsibility for managing your own project or work packages. You will have a mentor/line manager who will be either a QS/ Senior QS who will ensure you’re on the right track to progress into an experienced Quantity Surveyor.
3. Quantity Surveyor (£39,000): You’ve made it! A fully qualified, experienced all-singing all-dancing Quantity Surveyor. And better yet! You still have more room for progression. At this stage you’ll likely have had at least 5-10 years’ experience in the industry, here you can enjoy the fruits of your hard work, or even embark on obtaining chartership. Obtaining chartership can give you the edge you need to obtain that QS role with a prestigious company or position you’ve had your eyes on overseas.
4. Senior QS (£54,000): At this stage you will be a fountain of knowledge in the world of Quantity Surveying. Aspiring Quantity Surveyors will travel far and wide across the lands to hear your wisdom. Okay – maybe they won’t travel across the lands, but you will certainly be able to give solid commercial advise and use your experience to mentor junior surveyors. At this stage you may opt to be a freelance Senior QS. As a freelance senior you can look to charge a day rate of around £400!
5. Managing QS (£65,500): If you think you’ve got the leadership skills to manage a team of Quantity Surveyors, this will be the role for you. You don’t necessarily need any more experience than a Senior QS to reach this level. However, you will need to know how to successfully manage people, delegate work and create management processes to ensure a streamlined commercial process.
6. Commercial Manager (£71,000): The salary expectations for Commercial Manager can vary greatly depending on the level of responsibility which is held. At this level you will be responsible for the commercial aspect of a business sector. This can be anything from a large framework to multiple construction projects. You’ll need to ensure the correct people, procedures and contracts are in place to ensure the business is profitable and there is a sufficient level of work in the pipeline to ensure future commercial success. You will need to have good risk management and financial reporting abilities.
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