Nowadays everything is at a click distance; you can buy a car and get it delivered to your home. This happened before the pandemic, so gig economy was even before COVID-19 a new way to do business with Price Management.
Now you go on a freelancing platform, you can buy services from anywhere in the world, at a great price, and sometimes even grab a bargain too. Let’s start with a point. I am aware of the “grab a deal” that the freelancing platform offers. I am a frequent user of those platforms.
I produce estimates, therefore I am a price Management specialist; I proudly claim myself “Cost Consultant” to boost my ego. Back to the point. Cost management and estimation are not something that clients can buy off the shelf as a ready-made product. I produced, back in August 2021, an estimate for a railway line that required upgrading several stations to meet the criteria or disable users.
Mobility, or “Access for All”, is something that needs to be accessible to everyone. It is a basic human right. When I received the report to start my estimate, reading through the lines, I spotted number four words in a note: Grade II listed building.
The scope for that station was door widening, simple. You support the opening with adequate temporary work. Break the wall to widen the opening, reinstate the surfaces to make them smooth, and the estimate is “done and dusted”.
Simple and easy, the client pays maybe 30 bucks, or quid; they do the estimate in few hours; the client pays what he perceives as a deal, all happy apart…. the four above words: Grade II Listed Building.
Is it a detail? Indeed, it is so come on; it is a note in a footer of a 60 pages report. what might go wrong, though the freelancer was hired.
The station in question was an original design by Isambard Kingdom Brunel, with a carved stone architrave that comes from a local quarry now no longer in service.
A freelance estimate gives you a ballpark figure that is attractive to the client’s eyes, freelancer scope is to accomplish the client in the fastest time to submit the work and get approved to release the funds and carry on its activity.
The freelancer estimate comes with a final figure of £ 5,500.00, and a format that is not compliant with local standards.
My estimate comes with a final tag of £ 90,000.00, in an understandable format and compliant with the current method of measurement.
Estimates included temporary works, preliminaries, planning and permission, risk and contingencies, compliance with Heritage regulations, sourced a subcontractor capable to carve and source the required stone and capable to work on Listed Building.
In conclusion, gig economy is great, but sometimes clients should consider that not all of them can buy the services as a great deal. And, as per the above example, it is true, clients can archive great savings, but at the end, when they will go with a live project and they have a low estimated budget; they will face an unpleasant surprise that, if correctly advised in advance, the situation might have better price Management and planned with the correct provisions.
What do you think about gig economy for cost management and estimate? Is Gig’s economy a reliable solution or do you agree with my view? Leave me your thought and connect with me for other insights or hints.
1. I take your point, an estimator with a brain full of knowledge and experience can provide the best service to a client and would prove to be money well spent.
BUT, in the modern world, such service is recognised by fewer and fewer people because . . . .
2. All that is needed is a criteria list, which should include building age, encumbrances (listed building status, rights of light, etc.), and many more. The software (or even vlookup) can be set to prevent your ‘poor estimating’ example.
3. You need a better spell checker, your point is lost by bad delivery.