4 Steps to Become a Construction Estimator

Ready to start your career as a construction estimator? We’ve got the down and dirty on how to get there in four simple steps.


#1 Determine Career Fit


There are so many career paths in the construction industry. So, before you jump right in, make sure estimating is the right career fit for you, your interests, leadership style, and long-term goals.


Put simply, estimators calculate the time, money, materials, and labor required for a construction project.


Estimators use software and financial data regularly, so you’ll want to have a knack for tech and data analysis. If you love to work with numbers, you’re on your way!


There’s also an emphasis on leadership. Estimators collaborate across teams, working with architects, engineers, and contractors to monitor and adjust project costs. Collaboration and taking initiative are critical for success.


The California construction industry has a steady demand for estimators in the next five years. Even better, they make great money with junior estimators earning $26/hr on average and senior estimators earning $47. Learn more about salary by region here.



#2 Get Your Degree

While not all construction careers require a college degree, the estimator path often does due to its heavy focus on data and finance.


While getting your bachelor’s degree, consider a degree in engineering, physical sciences, mathematics, or statistics.


Some companies prefer degrees that are business-focused, such as those in accounting, finance, business, or economics.


There are many types of project estimators, so choose the degree you’re most passionate about.



#3 Secure an Internship


A classroom education isn’t all you’ll need, though. Management paths in construction often require internship experience, where you’ll learn about your specialty and the industry with hands-on experience.


Experienced industry members will show you the ropes, ultimately preparing you to enter the workforce.


During this time, you may determine the specific type of construction estimating you’re most interested in. That’s the beauty of our industry — you have the flexibility to grow into new positions, specialties, and more!



#4 Find Job Placement


Once you’ve completed an internship, it’s time for job placement! Some interns grow into full-time career positions with the same company they interned for.


While exploring potential jobs, consider a few things. Where would I like to be located? Would I like to work for a smaller or a larger company? And what kind of projects would I like to work on?


We’ve got a job board to help you! Find estimator jobs in one convenient place here.


We wish you luck on your path to becoming an estimator, and we have resources for you as you aim to #BuildCalifornia.


Want to know more? Check out a day in the life of Nick Nugent, an estimator with Royal Electric here.



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