So last week I got myself back to University and hit the ground running after a huge push the week before to finish some of work before both University and a new high end residential job began.
Starting with contract law on a Monday morning isn’t always the most exciting way to start the day, but ending Tuesday with QS practice is a good way to ease myself back into the working week, and after arguing the toss with my lecturer on how to price up work as a PQS I returned to work to start the new project; not of course after getting to a pre start meeting in Silverstone for a job which I did some take off work on previously.
The new project then… A refurb and extension to a lovely building in London, creating a building with around 2000 square meters of space for its residents, of course including a pool! Now taking off has always been a fairly strong point for me, however a very complicated take of sheet meant I was back to looking at individual wall lengths and plotting these, instead of the usual full perimeter measure. I soon found that doing this was much easier with a scale rule and physical copy of a drawing and after 3 days solid of measurements, including a few other bits and bobs in-between, I managed to get the first 3 floors scheduled out into areas and perimeters for floor, wall and ceiling finishes. A new skill in using the schedule was learnt and I am sure on my return tomorrow the next stages will begin!
I hear you rolling your eyes and saying “usual QS trainee just measuring”, fear not I have had other responsibilities too! At the pre start meeting I was plunged into the contract and the preliminaries. Looking at the different aspects that needed to be updated or changed in order to give accuracy to the contract already drawn up. Looking into waste disposal and site access we planned a new route into the site and new service access for water and electricity. A challenge needed overcoming in a water pipe that had been unearthed and was required to be redirected before work started, more prices to be calculated there!
Further to this I have been working on a project in Tanzania. A challenge is an understatement! Issues have arisen in when documents have to be issued and changes in drawings being left unmarked meant myself and a colleague have had a last minute rush with the PM to label and identify the cost issues related to the new drawings issued by the architect! Now I don’t like to ‘bash’ anyone but it seems to me last minute decisions by designers of all disciplines seems to make the job of a QS considerably more difficult, or alternative;y the arguments between designers do too!
Finally on Friday I had my annual review! It appears to me I have managed to keep my head above the water and my only failings were down to a lack of experience. Ridge seem to be happy with my pace and quality of work but special note was put on the kinds of checks I can do and how I can use drawings to check my measurements without physically remeasuring all the items again. I am happy with this and feel I am cementing , excuse the pun,my place a apart of the QS team in the Oxford office.
What do the coming months hold? I foresee a busy few weeks as I work on the tender and estimate for the new project, for which the deadline has already been set for the end of October! I am looking forward to following this job, in detail, from start to finish and I have been lucky to get a senior QS who is ken to let me have some say and ask questions! The preliminaries will be written as a team to include myself so this is rather an exciting prospect for myself, despite the extra pressure it brings.
I hope to post again soon once everything gets into a routine with University and Work but I can’t foresee any issues as of yet!