Voices: Field Notes

Come Up With Better Cost Estimates

Understand where significant errors can arise and how to combat them

By Dirk Willard, Contributing Editor
May 15, 2019

My estimate wasn’t even close. That surprised me because some accounting knowledge from my bookkeeper mother had rubbed off on me. So, I asked for a full breakdown from the bidder, something I had learned to do when managing projects in the Air Force. This revealed higher material costs than those I had used, which were based on old projects. However, that only accounted for part of the deficiency.

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