- Project plans
- Project activities
- Legislation and standards
- Industry context
Last edited 28 Nov 2017
Bill of quantities software
A bill of quantities (sometimes referred to as a 'BoQ' or 'BQ') is a document, typically prepared by a cost consultant (often a quantity surveyor) that provides measured quantities of the items of work identified by the drawings and specifications in the tender documentation for a project. It is issued to tenderers for them to prepare a price for carrying out the works.
Manual estimating can be an inefficient use of time, and so cost consultants often use BoQ software packages to make the process easier and to reduce errors. Databases may already exist providing design information from a building model, and specifications, and so quantities can be calculated and tender documents generated. During the design process, new measurements can be filed and included, with the result that every item, as well as the totals, are updated automatically.
Different levels of subdivision allow cost details for super- or sub-groupings to be created, which enables easy preparation of documents focusing on specific parts of the projects. Software can enable the organisation of BoQs into different work sections, grouping homogeneous categories of work. It may also be possible to re-order BoQ's from one breakdown structure to another. For more information see: Bill of quantities breakdown structures.
Typically, BoQ software uses the What You See Is What You Get (WYSIWYG) interface, allowing the user to work on screen as though they were working on a paper document. This increases the intuitive nature of the data entry. Drag and Drop actions enable users to copy data from document to document.
Many software programs also use pricing libraries, providing consistent, accurate and well-documented rate build-ups. Item description libraries can also be used to reduce the time taken for bill capture.
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
- Bill of quantities.
- Bill of quantities breakdown structures.
- Common Arrangement of Work Sections (CAWS).
- Computers in construction tendering.
- Excel and construction.
- Firm bill of quantities.
- Information and communications technology in construction.
- Taking off.
- Types of bill of quantities.
- Work package bill of quantities.
- Work section bill of quantities.
Featured articles and news
From the decorative to the utilitarian, and from the photographed to the forgotten.
New BRE book considers the progression from project-based knowledge creation to whole-life urban knowledge management.
This CIOB article explores the concept of value in building design and construction.
BREEAM and Measurabl announce integration to improve the financial performance of commercial real estate.
Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners' release new images of soon-to-open 3WTC tower in New York.
A document can be called a bond or a guarantee. Does the name matter and what is the difference between them?
New briefing note is launched focusing on increasing knowledge of housing that promotes health and wellbeing.
Arbitration is a private, contractual form of dispute resolution used in the construction industry.
The European Parliament has approved a revised Energy Performance of Buildings directive.
One in six MPs supports the ring-fencing of retentions as proposed in the 'Aldous Bill'.
A stakeholder is anyone who has an interest in the process or outcome of a construction project.