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Career and Education Opportunities for Cost Analysts in Charleston, West Virginia

There are many career and education opportunities for cost analysts in the Charleston, West Virginia area. There are currently 630 working cost analysts in West Virginia; this should grow 11% to 690 working cost analysts in the state by 2016. This is not quite as good as the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for cost analysts are expected to grow by about 25.3%. Cost analysts generally prepare cost estimates for product manufacturing, construction projects, or services to aid management in bidding on or determining price of product or service.

Cost analysts earn approximately $21 per hour or $44,010 per year on average in West Virginia. Nationally they average about $27 hourly or $56,510 annually. Earnings for cost analysts are not quite as good as earnings in the general category of Adjustment and Analysis in West Virginia and better than general Adjustment and Analysis category earnings nationally. Cost analysts work in a variety of jobs, including: design consultant, quantity surveyor, and cost estimator.

There are seventeen schools of higher education in the Charleston area, including six within twenty-five miles of Charleston where you can get a degree to start your career as a cost analyst. Given that the most common education level for cost analysts is a Bachelor's degree, you can expect to spend about four years studying to be a cost analyst if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Cost Analyst

Cost Analyst video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, cost analysts prepare cost estimates for product manufacturing, construction projects, or services to aid management in bidding on or determining price of product or service. They also may specialize according to particular service performed or type of product manufactured.

Cost analysts confer with clients, vendors, personnel in other departments or construction foremen to consider and formulate estimates and resolve issues. They also talk with engineers, architects, owners, and contractors on changes and adjustments to cost estimates. Equally important, cost analysts have to analyze blueprints and other documentation to ready time and labor estimates. They are often called upon to ready estimates for use in selecting vendors or subcontractors. They are expected to ready estimates used by management for purposes such as planning, organizing, and scheduling work. Finally, cost analysts ready cost and expenditure statements and other needed documentation at regular intervals for the duration of projects.

Every day, cost analysts are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to deal with basic arithmetic problems. It is also important that they listen to and understand others in meetings.

It is important for cost analysts to ready and maintain a directory of suppliers, contractors and subcontractors. They are often called upon to establish and maintain tendering process, and conduct negotiations. Somewhat less frequently, cost analysts are also expected to visit site and record data related to access, drainage and topography, and availability of services such as water and electricity.

Cost analysts sometimes are asked to visit site and record data related to access, drainage and topography, and availability of services such as water and electricity. And finally, they sometimes have to prepare cost monitoring and reporting systems and procedures.

Like many other jobs, cost analysts must be thorough and dependable and be able to absorb the factors involved and a problem and provide a well thought out solution.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Charleston include:

  • Accountant. Analyze financial information and prepare financial reports to determine or maintain records of assets, liabilities, profit and loss, tax liability, or other financial activities within an organization.
  • Budget Analyst. Examine budget estimates for completeness, accuracy, and conformance with procedures and regulations. Analyze budgeting and accounting reports for the purpose of maintaining expenditure controls.
  • Business Management Analyst. Conduct organizational studies and evaluations, design systems and procedures, conduct work simplifications and measurement studies, and prepare operations and procedures manuals to assist management in operating more efficiently and effectively. Includes program analysts and management consultants.
  • Credit Analyst. Analyze current credit data and financial statements of individuals or firms to determine the degree of risk involved in extending credit or lending money. Prepare reports with this credit information for use in decision-making.
  • Emergency Management Coordinator. Coordinate disaster response or crisis management activities, provide disaster preparedness training, and prepare emergency plans and procedures for natural, wartime, or technological disasters or hostage situations.
  • Income Tax Advisor. Prepare tax returns for individuals or small businesses but do not have the background or responsibilities of an accredited or certified public accountant.
  • Personal Financial Planner. Advise clients on financial plans utilizing knowledge of tax and investment strategies, securities, and real estate. Duties include assessing clients' assets, liabilities, and financial objectives to establish investment strategies.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Cost Analyst Training

University of Charleston - Charleston, WV

University of Charleston, 2300 MacCorkle Avenue, SE, Charleston, WV 25304. University of Charleston is a small university located in Charleston, West Virginia. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 1,431 students and an admission rate of 66%. University of Charleston has associate's degree, bachelor's degree, and master's degree programs in Business Administration and Management which graduated zero, twenty-four, and forty-two students respectively in 2008.

Community and Technical College at West Virginia University Institute of Technology - Montgomery, WV

Community and Technical College at West Virginia University Institute of Technology, 405 Fayette Pike, Montgomery, WV 25136. Community and Technical College at West Virginia University Institute of Technology is a small university located in Montgomery, West Virginia. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 743 students. Community and Technical College at West Virginia University Institute of Technology has a one to two year program in Business/Commerce which graduated two students in 2008.

West Virginia State University - Institute, WV

West Virginia State University, Rte 25, Institute, WV 25112-1000. West Virginia State University is a small university located in Institute, West Virginia. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 3,347 students and an admission rate of 57%. West Virginia State University has a bachelor's degree program in Business Administration and Management which graduated sixty-nine students in 2008.

West Virginia State Community and Technical College - Institute, WV

West Virginia State Community and Technical College, 103 Cole Complex, Institute, WV 25112-1000. West Virginia State Community and Technical College is a small college located in Institute, West Virginia. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 1,741 students. West Virginia State Community and Technical College has an associate's degree program in Business Administration and Management which graduated twelve students in 2008.

West Virginia University Institute of Technology - Montgomery, WV

West Virginia University Institute of Technology, 405 Fayette Pke, Montgomery, WV 25136. West Virginia University Institute of Technology is a small university located in Montgomery, West Virginia. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 1,185 students and an admission rate of 46%. West Virginia University Institute of Technology has 2 areas of study related to Cost Analyst. They are:

  • Mechanical Engineering, bachelor's degree which graduated 23 students in 2008.
  • Business/Commerce, bachelor's degree which graduated 15 students in 2008.

Roane-Jackson Technical Center - Leroy, WV

Roane-Jackson Technical Center, 4800 Spencer Rd, Leroy, WV 25252-9700. Roane-Jackson Technical Center is a small school located in Leroy, West Virginia. It is a public school with primarily less-than 2-year programs and has 49 students. Roane-Jackson Technical Center has a one to two year program in Business Administration and Management which graduated eight students in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Certified Professional Estimator: The American Society of Professional Estimators (ASPE) has been certifying construction estimators for over thirty years.

For more information, see the American Society of Professional Estimators website.

Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialist: CAMS certification is rrecognized by employers in both private industry and government.

For more information, see the Association of Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialists website.

Certified Investment Management Analyst: The CIMA offers an intense educational experience focusing on asset allocation, manager search and selection, investment policy and performance measurement.

For more information, see the Investment Management Consultants Association website.

Certified Cost Estimator/Analyst : The Society's Certified Cost Estimator/Analyst (CCE/A) program provides a professional credential to SCEA members and nonmembers who demonstrate mastery of basic concepts and methods.

For more information, see the Society of Cost Estimating and Analysis website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Charleston, West Virginia

Charleston, West Virginia
Charleston, West Virginia photo by Malepheasant

Charleston is situated in Kanawha County, West Virginia. It has a population of over 50,302, which has shrunk by 5.8% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Charleston, 84, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Charleston are priced at $268,400 on average, which is far greater than the state average. In 2008, thirty-four new homes were constructed in Charleston, up from twenty-seven the previous year.

The three most popular industries for women in Charleston are health care, educational services, and public administration. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, health care, and public administration. The average travel time to work is about 16 minutes. More than 32.6% of Charleston residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 15.0%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Charleston is 7.7%, which is the same as West Virginia's average of 7.7%. About 16.7% of Charleston's residents are below the poverty line, which is better than the state average.

The percentage of Charleston residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 34.5%, is less than both the national and state average. Starcher Baptist Church, Southeast Church of the Nazarene and South Ruffner Presbyterian Church are among the churches located in Charleston. The largest religious groups are the American Baptist Churches in the USA, the United Methodist Church and the Catholic Church.

Charleston is home to the John F Kennedy Center and the Kanawha County Courthouse as well as Watt Powell Stadium and Ruffner Memorial Park. Shopping centers in the area include Patrick Street Plaza Shopping Center, Laidley Court Shopping Center and Plaza East Shopping Center. Visitors to Charleston can choose from Days Inn Charleston East WV, Motel 6 and Fairfield Inn Charleston for temporary stays in the area.