Quantity Surveyor Definition

When Costs Count…

In a nutshell, a quantity surveyor (QS) is responsible for estimating and monitoring costs for a construction project. They read and interpret architectural and engineering plans, designs and specifications and apply their existing knowledge of the industry and materials to estimate and monitor costs from start to finish.

In Australia, the Australian Institute of Quantity Surveyors (AIQS) is the peak professional standards body for quantity surveyors and other built environment cost professionals.

Why Do You Need a QS?

Provides Certainty

Your AIQS Quantity Surveyor will minimise uncertainties in project costs and delivery by:

  • Providing certainty of costs based on current tendered market pricing
  • Benchmarking against other projects and providing known metrics for comparison and decision making
  • Advising on strategies to avoid cost and time overruns throughout the entire project
  • Providing operational, ongoing, and whole of life
  • Drawing on experience in gateway and milestone reporting for business cases and / or economic appraisal

Minimises Risk

  • Your AIQS Quantity Surveyor will minimise and manage the risk exposure on your project by:
  • Providing due diligence reporting to assist with strategic decision making
  • Providing procurement advice best suited to your project
  • Delivering independent, impartial and expert advice
  • Identifying and minimising risks associated with time, cost, quality, environment and safety
  • Advising on potential risks and opportunities arising from:
  • Design variation
  • Construction program planning
  • Subcontracting competency
  • Government approval process
  • Price inflation of materials

Controls Cost

Your AIQS Quantity Surveyor will protect your financial interests from the earliest point of involvement through to the conclusion of the project by:

  • Establishing robust initial budgets and advising on ongoing and future operational costs
  • Monitoring and providing advice on cost and quality for each design component as the design develops
  • Correctly certifying progress payments to enable you to maintain cashflows
  • Value managing to ensure you get the best value for money from the design, construction and operation of your assets
  • Advising on the best funding and delivery model

Your AIQS Quantity Surveyor

Your AIQS Quantity Surveyor is a Professional who provides you with Power and Protection to maximise the efficiency and effectiveness of your project, reduce risk, save on costs, and find a point of difference. Your AIQS Quantity Surveyor:


  • Is a qualified professional with significant market experience, committed to excellence and currency of knowledge through Continuing Professional Development (CPD)
  • Demonstrates outstanding competence and commitment to professionalism, which has been formally assessed by the AIQS and tested by industry peers
  • Commands ultimate respect from design professionals in regards to cost and risk management
  • Is committed to the AIQS Code of Professional Conduct


  • Provides certainty and assurance, empowering you to make informed decisions for the completion of your project
  • Takes a holistic approach to service delivery by understanding your project requirements and desired outcomes


  • Delivers expertise to minimise project costs, achieve best value for money, reduce risks, and achieve your required outcomes
  • Provides claims and dispute resolution assistance should the circumstance arise

Australian Institute of Quantity Surveyors

The Australian Institute of Quantity Surveyors (AIQS) is a professional standards body with over 4,000 members. Through its leadership, standards, and Code of Professional Conduct, it ensures that AIQS Quantity Surveyors are dedicated to maintaining the highest standards of professional excellence.

With branches across Australia and internationally, the AIQS actively engages with all levels of Government, Financial Institutions, ATO, major corporate institutions, and the building, infrastructure, utility and mining sectors.

The Institute promotes AIQS Quantity Surveyors in providing impartial, independent and expert advice which benefits your construction and infrastructure projects, by ensuring that design and construction costs are managed as efficiently and effectively as possible.