Question Description: explain the uses of estimates in civil engineering projects.
Course Hero Answer & Explanation:
Estimating in construction is important because almost everyone has a budget they have to meet for a project. Almost everyone wants to know how much it wil cost before they are willing to start. Estimates are also used to narrow down a choice in a contractor.
The contractor and customer relationship usually starts with a phone call and a scheduled time to meet and discuss the project. This is essentially a job interview for the contractor. The scope of work is discussed and this interview process is continued in the estimating phase of the project. Providing a detailed estimate shows the customer that the contractor is familiar with the type of project being planned and that the budget will work. Wether the project is a new factory, school, office, house, or just painting a bedroom the process is the same in my experience. Once the customer has the estimate they decide how much if any work they would like to schedule and the estimate is used as a starting point for billing later.
If you are hitting a contractor one thing that is really important to know is wether the estimate may be treated as an actual quote or if it is just an estimate. If it can be treated as a quote then the price should not increase just because the contractor priced something wrong. Also, before you ask for an estimate make sure you know what you want. In my experience most estimates are quotes for exactly the scope of work discussed. As soon as you start to make changes later the price can start going up. Once you start a project every change will have a minimum additional cost and often the cost of changes will be used to cover any mistakes the contractor made in his original price.
Only meet with a contractor who comes highly recommend, knows how to stay on budget, and who you feel is 100% trustworthy.
Estimate is prepared for planning of a particular construction.
To segregate the money required for different materials, procedures and labours.
To get an idea how much the construction will cost.
To manage the cash flows evenly and properly as per time and requirement.
To check the financial feasibility of the particular construction.
To arrange finances time to time.
In mathematics, approximation describes the process of finding estimates in the form of upper or lower bounds for a quantity that cannot readily be evaluated precisely, and approximation theory deals with finding simpler functions that are close to some complicated function and that can provide useful estimates. In statistics, an estimator is the formal name for the rule by which an estimate is calculated from data, and estimation theory deals with finding estimates with good properties. This process is used in signal processing, for approximating an unobserved signal on the basis of an observed signal containing noise. For estimation of yet-to-be observed quantities, forecasting and prediction are applied. A Fermi problem, in physics, is one concerning estimation in problems which typically involve making justified guesses about quantities that seem impossible to compute given limited available information.
Estimation is important in business and economics, because too many variables exist to figure out how large-scale activities will develop. Estimation in project planning can be particularly significant, because plans for the distribution of labor and for purchases of raw materials must be made, despite the inability to know every possible problem that may come up. A certain amount of resources will be available for carrying out a particular project, making it important to obtain or generate a cost estimate as one of the vital elements of entering into the project. The U.S. Government Accountability Office defines a cost estimate as, “the summation of individual cost elements, using established methods and valid data, to estimate the future costs of a program, based on what is known today”, and reports that “realistic cost estimating was imperative when making wise decisions in acquiring new systems”. Furthermore, project plans must not underestimate the needs of the project, which can result in delays while unmet needs are fulfilled, nor must they greatly overestimate the needs of the project, or else the unneeded resources may go to waste.