300+ [REAL TIME] Estimator Interview Questions

  1. 1. What Is Performance Review?
    This is the use of variance analysis, trend analysis and earned value analysis to determine the cost and schedule performance over time and the estimated funds required to complete work in progress.


  1. 2. Explain What Is Forecasting?
    This is done by making estimates about the future performance of a project based on the current performance of the project.


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  1. 3. What Is Earned Value Management?
    This is the use of scope, schedule and resource measurement to determine the state and performance of the project.


  1. 4. What Is Management Reserve?
    This is a planned amount of money (or time) set aside to address unforeseen risks in a project. The management reserve is not within the usual budget of the project manager and the project manager would need the permission of the senior management, and sometimes the sponsor, to access it.


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  1. 5. What Is Triple Constraint Triangle In Project Management?
    Project cost, schedule and scope are depicted as a project management triangle. The triangle is formed by customer as the center point and the three aspects form the sides of triangle. In order to gain customer satisfaction, the project management team should deliver scope in propose schedule and cost. In case any leg is gets disturbed, the other two legs gets affected. For example, if the customer increases the scope, then the other two legs-schedule and cost- get affected a lot.


Civil Engineering Interview Questions

  1. 6. Do You Know How Many Square Feet Of Pizza Are Eaten In The United States Each Month?
    This is a classic guesstimate question where you need to think aloud. And so first off you round the U.S.population to 300 million people (it’s actually about 315 million but rounding will be much easier and your interviewer will not score you lower for rounding). Then estimate how many people eat pizza. A decent educated guess is two out of every three people, or 200 million. Now let’s say the average pizza-eating person eats pizza twice a month, and eats two slices at a time. That’s four slices a month.If the average slice of pizza is perhaps six inches at the base and 10 inches long, then the slice is 30 square inches of pizza. So, four pizza slices would be 120 square inches (30 times 4). Since one square foot equals 144 square inches (12 times 12), let’s assume that each person who eats pizza eats one square foot per month.

    Since there are 200 million pizza-eating Americans, 200 million square feet of pizza are consumed in the U.S.

    each month. To summarize: 300 million people in America, 200 million eat pizza, average slice of pizza is six inches at the base and 10 inches long or 30 square inches, average American eats four slices of pizza a month, four pieces times 30 square inches equals 120 square inches (one square foot is 144 square inches), so let’s assume one square foot per person, and thus one square foot times 200 million people equals 200 million square feet of pizza a month.


  1. 7. Explain Me As A Cost Estimator You Must Pay Attention To The Smallest Detail. What Would Your Previous Manager Have To Say About Your Attention To Detail?
    My rule is to check the results with design and inspect the outcome of resources. Verify with previous factors and common mistakes. Justify and improve.


  1. 8. Explain Me What Was The Most Difficult Estimating Assignment You Have Faced? How Did You Get Through?
    Cost Controlling a running projects for more than a one year, Revised the Book of quantity, Studied the contract and the agreements.


  1. 9. Please Explain What Do You Like And Dislike About The Sales Process?
    Use this question to know the candidate’s self-awareness and motivation. Know your strengths in the sales process as these will translate into what you like. The interviewer will give priority to you when your “likes” and strengths fix the sales position.For example, if you are discussing your strengths with the interviewer, demonstrate and describe how you enjoy this aspect of sales and your pleasure at coming up with win-win solutions. You need to emphasize that this will be ensured to satisfy customers and increase sales for the company.You note that you should take careful when responding to the “dislikes”. During negotiation on sales solutions, you should choose a characteristic of your current or precious company, for example you done poor delivery on the sales or lack of flexibility. It is positive manner to answer this question. You give your “dislikes” to get the solutions for the sort of problems. For example, there is obstruction in the delivery of company products and this makes customers unsatisfied. So you will discuss how set up a follow-up process to speed up the delivery of products.


  1. 10. Suppose If You Look At A Clock And The Time Is 3:15, What’s The Angle Between The Hour And The Minute Hands?
    Usually, if the answer to a brainteaser seems too easy, chances are the answer’s wrong. And in this case, the answer is not zero degrees. The hour hand, remember, moves as well. That is, in addition to the minute hand. And so, at 3:15, the hour hand and the minute hand are not on top of each other. In fact, the hour hand has moved a quarter of the way between the 3 and 4. This means it’s moved a quarter of 30 degrees (360 degrees divided by 12 equals 30). So the answer, to be exact, is seven and a half degrees (30 divided by four).


  1. 11. Do You Know What Makes A Product Successful?
    Basing on the monetization, these questions give you the chance to prove your personal try. Do not show extremely your optimism and pursue the unreality. Give your answers the reality. It is useful to predict a five to ten- year- scenario of expectations in order to gain your targets that you set up and it is the period of time to see how your plans and targets are performed.Therefore, the quality of the product and marketability of the mentioned industry need to be highlighted. This will help you to achieve the interviewer’s attention and insurance to you personality and you can get the honest and long- term goals.


  1. 12. Tell Me Do You Have An Estimating Assignment From The Past That You Feel You Did Not Complete Well?
    Well, never faced that worst situation, maybe once when we were in a group and project dead line was so close to submit.


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  1. 13. Suppose While A Project Is Ongoing, You Realize That An Error In Your Cost Estimate Of One Of The Primary Resources Needed To Complete Was Unaccounted For. What Would You Do?
    Once an error is noticed, you should quantify the impact on the project and report it to the senior management. This error would definitely affect the cost baseline. While we should always try to avoid mistakes, they do occur and it is our professional responsibility to report them to the management especially when it has a financial implication to the project.


  1. 14. What Is Reserve Analysis?
    This is used in monitoring the status of management and contingency reserves so that the project does not suddenly run out of budget.


  1. 15. What Is Cost Performance Index (cpi)?
    This is a measure of the cost efficiency of budgeted resources expressed as the ratio of earned value to actual cost. A CPI of 1.0 means the project is exactly on budget, that the work actually done so far is exactly the same as the cost so far. When CPI is greater than 1.0, it is under the planned cost and when it is less than 1.0, it is over the planned cost.


  1. 16. Do You Know What Is The Most Important Document When Planning Cost?
    The most important document when planning project cost is the project management plan. The project management plan is the most important document for any project and it contains all the other management plans such as the project time management plan, project scope management plan, project quality management plan, etc. All the information required to plan cost is available in the project management plan.


  1. 17. What Is Scheduled Performance Index (spi)?
    This is a measure of schedule efficiency expressed as the ratio of earned value to planned value. An SPI of 1.0 means that the work actually done so far is exactly the same as the work planned to be done so far.When it is greater than 1.0, project is ahead of schedule meaning more work than planned has been completed and when less than 1.0, it is behind schedule.


  1. 18. Suppose If You Have Seven White Socks And Nine Black Socks In A Drawer, How Many Socks Do You Have To Pull Out Blindly In Order To Ensure That You Have A Matching Pair?
    The answer is three: if the first one is one color (say, white), and the second one is the other color (black), then the third one, no matter what the color, will make a matching pair. (Sometimes you’re not supposed to think that hard.)


Civil Engineering Interview Questions

  1. 19. What Is The Project Cost Baseline?
    The cost baseline is the information that deals with the amount of money the project is estimated to cost and what time during the project the money would be spent. The cost baseline is the estimate cost of the project plus the contingency reserve. The cost baseline is however constantly reviewed, as it is possible to have several intermediate baselines based on changes that occur during a project.


  1. 20. What Is Project Management Software?
    This is often used to graphically monitor the earned value management as well as forecasting a range of possible final outcomes of the project.


  1. 21. What Is Contingency Reserve?
    This is a planned amount of money (or time) added to the project cost (or time) estimate to serve as a “project risk” buffer. Contingencies are responses to specific risks which has been pre-identified by the project.