Quantifying your Construction Project to International Standards

A major task for the Quantity Surveyor is the preparation of the Bills of Quantities, or BoQ. The BoQ provides the measured quantities of the items of work identified by the drawings and specifications in the tender documents for a project. The BoQ is prepared by reference to standard methods of measurement and provides a standard document for all tenderers to refer to when pricing the works therefore allowing tenders to be submitted in the same format which assists the tender analysis.

BoQ’s are primarily a tendering document allowing each contractor tendering for the project to price the work from the basis of the same information. The BoQ is also the basis for preparation of interim payment applications/certificates and as the first reference point for pricing of variations.

The BoQ includes a preliminaries and preambles section which defines the scope of the works, specific elements on the nature of the works, information on the contract conditions, special instructions to the contractor and measurement preambles to aid pricing. Separate sections are then provided for the measured works grouped by trade section or elementally and combined under headings i.e. structure, architectural, interior decoration, MEP and external works. A further section often used in BoQ’s is for Provisional Sums which are allowances estimated by the Quantity Surveyor for specific elements of the work that are not defined in sufficient detail to permit accurate pricing.