Steel Estimator

Steel Estimator

Structural steel estimators are like quantity surveyors for fabrication shops. They specialise in producing reliable estimates of the amounts and types of steel to be used on a project and what they will cost. They prepare schedules of quantities from measurements taken from the drawings.

There is a range of career paths available to a trade qualified estimator including supervision and inspection. You might otherwise decide to open your own business or move into a quality assurance or compliance role.


What does a steel estimator do?

Studies blueprints, drawings and specifications to determine job requirements

Produces reliable estimates and costs of the amounts and types of steel to be used

Prepares schedules of quantities from drawings and specifications produced by engineers

Orders to the specifications all the steel components needed for a project

Monitors the budget of a job, compiling progress payments and variations in payments

Attends site meetings and is involved in project management activities

What qualifications do I need?

There is a variety of courses and degrees that can help prepare you for a career as an estimator. Most of these courses require completion of Year 12, preferably with studies in maths.

Examples of courses:

  • Diploma in Quantity Surveying 
  • Diploma of Building
  • Bachelor of Construction Management 
  • Bachelor of Urban Development (Quantity Surveying)

What skills do I need?

  • Teamwork and communication 
  • Problem solving and critical thinking 
  • Enjoy working with numbers and maths 
  • An aptitude for working with computers 
  • Ability to read plans and drawings 
  • Enthusiasm, accuracy and precision

Average salary

Once you have some experience and a qualification, your earning potential will increase. A fully qualified estimator with experience can expect an average salary of around $70,000.

Why opt for a career in steel?

The steel industry has a profound impact on our daily lives. From the cars we drive, and the houses we live in, to the roads and bridges we travel across every day, the steel industry shapes our world. With a career in steel, students can play a part in this vital industry. Access our resources below to engage your students with the steel industry.