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The Competency Requirements for Quantity Surveyors: Enhancing Continuous Professional Development

Authors:

MW Mohd Shafiei ,

School of Housing, Building and Planning, Universiti Sains Malaysia, 11800 Minden, Pulau Pinang, MY
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I Said

School of Housing, Building and Planning, Universiti Sains Malaysia, 11800 Minden, Pulau Pinang, MY
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Abstract

Quantity surveyors are construction economists who fulfill varied and comprehensive duties to support cost-effective construction and property development projects. The core competencies of quantity surveyors include determining project budgets, measuring project quantities, preparing contract documentation (such as Bills of Quantities and Cost Control Documents), administering contracts, and preparing final accounts. Despite being recognised as a professional discipline distinct from architecture and civil engineering since 1836, quantity surveyors are not immune to the threats and changes in their operating environment. Some parties in the construction industry have been critical about the quality of works and services provided by quantity surveyors. Some even question the importance of appointing quantity surveyors as project consultants. Because of these challenges, the profession needs to regroup and take stock of the whole situation so that they will not become extinct in the future. All parties who have vested interest in the development of the profession, be it the students, educators, registered as well as unregistered quantity surveyors must find an answer to arguably, the declining roles of quantity surveyors and the lack of recognition they receive in construction projects. Two pertinent issues that had been discussed by these people are: the competency level of practicing quantity surveyors who offer their services to the clients; and the amalgamation of a set of competency standards into professional quantity surveyors’ training, formally named as ‘continuous professional development’ (CPD) by the profession. Competence, in any sphere of work, can be a difficult concept to pin down. It is particularly difficult when it relates to professional occupations where roles can be complex and the knowledge and skills involved many and varied. Recognising the importance of professional competence, a research looking into issues relating to quantity surveyors’ competency had been conducted by the Universiti Sains Malaysia, Malaysia. The on-going research looks into the national competency standards, industry needs, job profile charts, and delivery of learning materials to quantity surveying students. The research findings reveal that, quantity surveying educators and practices alike, are still deeply entrenched in the ‘traditional’ core competencies rather than the newer and more novel services and skills. The research respondents however, recognised that university educators in the field of quantity surveying need to develop a comprehensive course syllabuses that cover the whole spectrum of knowledge/cognitive, functional, and behavioural competencies in order to produce competent and employable quantity surveyors for the nation. Lastly, the respondents are generally supportive of having a Malaysian version of competency standards for the quantity surveyors. They are also confident that these standards can become the lynchpin for a comprehensive continuous professional development programme.

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.4038/sljhrm.v2i1.5102

Sri Lankan Journal of Human Resource Management Vol.2(1) 2008 pp.17-27

How to Cite: Shafiei, M.M. & Said, I., (2013). The Competency Requirements for Quantity Surveyors: Enhancing Continuous Professional Development. Sri Lankan Journal of Human Resource Management. 2(1), pp.17–27. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/sljhrm.v2i1.5102
Published on 06 Jan 2013.
Peer Reviewed

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