A good estimator will always work at performance improvement. This means keeping current on better wiring methods, labor saving components, and estimating technique. An employee that will invest in themselves will usually have an employer that will invest in them as well.
The following are some suggestions for estimators in keeping current in electrical estimating:
- If estimating software is used, read help topics of tasks and commands that you are weak in. Also, most software companies have free training videos online that will help with basic functions of their programs.
- Read articles in current trade magazines related to estimating and project management.
- Review new products released that provide labor savings.
- If local suppliers and vendors offer “Lunch & Learn,” attend as many as possible. Lighting controls are popular with contractors. The lighting industry is in constant motion.
- Seek the experience of seasoned estimators with whom is a co-worker. Just don’t learn the bad habits.
- Follow changes in the National Electric Code when the newest code book is released.
If you have not been trained in the fundamentals of electrical estimating, find a good estimating course and sign up.
Being a good electrician doesn’t make someone a good estimator any more than a good football player makes a good football coach.
To be an estimator you must understand the fundamentals of electrical estimating, if you don’t, you are nothing more than a symbol counter. And symbol counters can put electrical contractors out of business!
Remember, estimating is expensive, poor estimating is costly, but quality estimating is profitable.