Quantity surveyors have been involved with the construction process for at least 350 years, providing the financial management of contracts and advising clients on value for money for proposed works. It is therefore rather surprising that the role of the profession has not been particularly widely recognised by the general public. This can be explained to an extent by contrasting the roles of architects and civil engineers with those of quantity surveyors. The design professions are much more publicly recognised because their creations are long-lasting, visible memorials to their endeavours, whereas the essential financial planning and management of these same projects as undertaken by quantity surveyors are not at all obvious. Over the last two decades, however, the profile of the quantity surveying profession has been raised within the public domain, partly due to the changing roles adopted by the profession, as described by Ivor H. Seeley in Quantity Surveying Practice (Macmillan, second edition, 1997), and the increased demand by clients for sound financial advice and management of projects. Consultant quantity surveyors are now sometimes the lead consultants for large developments, providing all professional services from inception to occupation.
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