Land Surveyor Job Description, Skills, and Salary
Get to know about the duties, responsibilities, qualifications, and skills requirements of a land surveyor. Feel free to use our job description template to produce your own. We also provide you with information about the salary you can earn as a land surveyor.
Who is a Land Surveyor?
The technique, profession, art, and science of finding the locations of points on the earth in two or three dimensions, as well as the separations and angles between them, is known as surveying or land surveying. The art and science of creating or reestablishing corners, lines, borders, and monuments of real property (land) using historical evidence, documentation, and current norms of practice are known as land surveying. Along with other related services, land surveying also covers subdivision planning and design, legal description writing, mapping, construction layout, and accurate measurements of angle, length, area, and volume. A land surveyor is a person who specializes in land surveying. These points, which are typically on Earth’s surface, are frequently used for establishing ownership maps and boundaries, locations, such as the planned positions of building structures or the surface locations of subsurface features, or other requirements imposed by the government or civil law, such as real estate sales. Archaeology and private investigation are both an element of land surveying. Your property rights are safeguarded by this mix of independent information.
The term “geomatics surveyor” is frequently used to refer to land surveyors. A land surveyor is a highly skilled expert who measures a parcel of land to determine borders for design and construction reasons, resolve boundary disputes, or produce maps. The ability to conduct various sorts of surveys requires years of training and education. A land surveyor is a professional who collects precise data on the topography of the land by field measurements, observations, the use of various surveying tools, and data analysis to define property lines and prepare for the future. Surveyors frequently hold degrees in geomatics, civil engineering, or surveying and mapping. Due to the legal nature of surveying, a land surveyor’s job must be thorough and exact, and they must expertly employ specialized equipment to determine boundary lines and current conditions. Finding the boundaries of a person’s property is one of the land surveyor’s main responsibilities. By the legal descriptions of that boundary, a land surveyor locates the boundary on the actual land and marks it so the owner will know what land is his or hers. Geospatial data and complete, exact parcel boundaries for a property must be provided by land surveyors.
Since the dawn of history as we know it, land surveying has played a role in the growth of the human environment. It is necessary for the majority of construction-related planning and implementation. As a crucial instrument for study across a wide range of scientific disciplines, it is also utilized in transportation, communications, mapping, and the establishment of the boundaries that govern land ownership. By calculating and logging the distances between fixed sites, land surveyors play a crucial part in real estate, building, and related industries. Both at an office and on the job are where land surveyors perform their duties. Typically, a bachelor’s degree is necessary for land surveyors, and experience levels and educational background both have an impact on their earnings. There are numerous forms of land surveying, including Geodetic Survey, Cadastral Survey, Topographic Survey, ALTA Survey, Boundary Survey, Location Survey, Subdivision Survey, Site-planning Survey, and Construction Survey.
Geodetic Survey: A geodetic survey requires measuring a sizable portion of the earth while taking the planet’s curvature into account. Because they account for the actual curvature of the planet, these surveys can be very accurate.
Topographic Survey: In a topographic survey, the vertical elevation of the surface being surveyed and any man-made structures on it are measured. Topographic surveys are regularly carried out by governments and companies engaged in construction. To assess if a piece of land is suitable for a golf course, a business owner may arrange a topographic survey.
Cadastral Survey: Whether a piece of property is privately or publicly owned, the borders between it can be determined via cadastral surveys. To calculate property taxes and determine the precise quantity of land that will be transferred when a property is sold, cadastral surveys are used to establish the legal border that will be recognized for all legal purposes.
Land Surveyor Job Description
Below are the land surveyor job description examples you can use to develop your resume or write a land surveyor job description for your employee. Employers can also use it to sieve out job seekers when choosing candidates for interviews.
- Make that the survey data is accurate, including any measurements and computations made at the survey sites.
- Direct or perform surveys to determine the boundaries of properties based on legal deeds and titles.
- Prepare or oversee the preparation of all survey-related data, charts, plots, maps, records, and papers.
- Prepare and maintain sketches, maps, reports, and legal descriptions of surveys to describe, certify, and accept responsibility for work accomplished.
- Describe property boundary surveys for use in deeds, leases, or other legal documents.
- ook for legal documents, survey records, and land titles to find out about property borders in survey areas.
- Coordinating findings with engineering and architectural staff, clients, and other project stakeholders are necessary.
- Establish permanent locations for use in mapping using geodetic and engineering tools.
- Calculate the terrain’s heights, depths, relative positions, property lines, and other features.
- Make adjustments to keep surveying equipment accurate,
- Train helpers and assistants, and oversee their work on tasks like conducting surveys or creating maps.
- Record survey findings, including the dimensions, location, elevation, and shape of the land or other land characteristics.
- Compute geodetic measurements and analyze survey data to ascertain the locations, forms, and elevations of geomorphic and topographic features.
- Determine the longitudes and latitudes of significant features and boundaries in the survey areas (GPS) using theodolites, transits, levels, and satellite-based global positioning systems.
- Analyze survey objectives and requirements to create survey proposals or give instructions to those creating survey proposals.
- Testify as an expert witness in court matters involving land survey concerns, such as property boundaries.
- Plan and carry out ground surveys to establish baselines, elevations, and other geodetic measures.
- Create standards for survey techniques and procedures.
- Survey water bodies to identify navigable channels and gather information for building piers, breakwaters, and other marine constructions.
- Direct aerial scans over a range of terrain
- Conduct research on surveying and mapping techniques utilizing expertise in the creation of photogrammetric maps and electronic data processing.
- A surveying degree.
- Education in civil engineering or a related field
- Good mathematical abilities and the capacity to perform statistical calculations
- Prior work experience as a surveyor or in a related position
- Tech-savvy, including familiarity with CAD tools and working knowledge of GPS and GIS.
- Mathematics and problem-solving skills
- Ability to pay close attention.
- Ability to make analyses.
- Strong attention to detail
- Organizing abilities.
- A strong memory
- Excellent leadership and organizational skills.
- Communication skills: Both written and vocal communication abilities are needed for this. Surveyors must provide their team members with specific instructions. Additionally, they must be able to take direction from architects and construction managers and communicate the status of the project to developers, attorneys, financiers, and government officials. Customer service and client management are facilitated by communication abilities.
- Detail-oriented: Due to the legal nature of the documents they produce, surveyors must work precisely and accurately.
- Physical stamina: Physical endurance/stamina is required because surveyors typically work outside in challenging terrain. They must therefore be able to walk for several hours over great distances.
- Problem-solving and analyzing skills: Surveyors must determine why there are differences between the conditions on the ground and the paperwork that shows the property lines. They need to determine the cause of any changes from prior years if there were any to redraw the boundaries of properties. Thinking critically and logically is required for problem-solving.
- Technical expertise: To gather information for land surveys, surveyors employ cutting-edge technology like GPS units and “total stations” for measuring distance and slope.
- Time management abilities: Surveyors need to be able to organize their own and their team members’ schedules while working. When there are tight deadlines or when working outdoors in the winter when the sunshine hours are limited, this is essential.
- Ability to visualize: Surveyors must have the ability to visualize new structures and distances.
- Numerical skills and the capacity for mathematical computation
- The capacity to comprehend and analyze facts
- Modern IT abilities and comfort with new technology
- Paying close attention
- Organizational Skills
- The capacity to function both individually and in a group
How to Become a Land Surveyor
Step 1: Apprenticeships and High School Courses
If surveying is something you’re interested in, high school classes like algebra, trigonometry, geometry, drafting, and computers might help you get ready for this line of employment. In most cases, a bachelor’s degree is necessary, but certain employers may hire high school graduates as apprentices even if they have no post-secondary education.
Step 2: Earn a Bachelor’s Degree
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) states that a bachelor’s degree is required for employment as a surveyor (www.bls.gov). You’ll find several colleges offer bachelor’s degree programs in mapping, surveying, and geography. Engineering and computer science degrees are also helpful for this job. Your practical skills, theoretical knowledge, and foundational concepts will all be covered in a surveying bachelor’s degree program. Remote sensing and satellite surveying, land information systems, survey research, statistical techniques, and real estate law are among the topics covered in the courses. If you’re interested in a 2-year degree, technical institutions and community colleges offer surveying degrees.
Step 3: Acquire Experience and Internship
You could become an expert in fields like geodetic surveying, geophysical prospector surveying, or marine surveying after gaining experience. For land surveying and aerial mapping, a geodetic surveyor would employ high-quality data. Locating possible locations to harvest subsurface minerals, petroleum, or other resources would be your duty if you worked as a geophysical prospecting surveyor. The shoreline, depth, and terrain of rivers, lakes, harbours, and other bodies of water are mapped by marine surveyors. A land surveying internship is not only a great way to apply what you learn in class to real-world situations, but in many states, it is also necessary to obtain a license. Students frequently have the option to select an internship that focuses on the particular subfield or specialty they wish to pursue because surveying is a large topic. In general, surveying students can get internships through their university, which is likely to have links with regional businesses and governmental organizations that are interested in surveying. Students can individually make these interactions if this is not the case. Because there aren’t many internships available, especially in smaller locations, applicants should start making plans a year before their preferred start date. The professional land surveyor needs a lot of help from interns to collect data in the field, compile that data, and produce the project’s final product.
Step 4: Obtain a Surveyor’s License
Surveyors must obtain a license in every state. The National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying administers two tests, and the results are recognized by the majority of states (www.ncees.org). You can firstly acquire the Fundamentals of Surveying (FS), after earning your undergraduate degree. You can become a surveying intern if you receive a passing grade. After four years of supervised experience as a surveyor, you are qualified to sit for the Principles and Practices of Surveying (PS) exam, which is the second exam.
Step 5: Seek Employment
Government agencies, the architectural, engineering, highway, street, and bridge construction businesses, as well as the nonresidential building construction sectors, are where you’ll discover surveying positions the most frequently. According to the BLS, surveyor employment was estimated to be 46,000 in 2020. Between 2020 and 2030, the BLS predicts that employment will grow by 2%. These positions will be created as a result of an increase in the need for surveyors, particularly on infrastructure projects, as well as retirement and turnover among present employees.
Step 6: Develop Your Career by Earning Certifications and Specializations
The National Society of Professional (NSPS) Certified Survey Technician (CST) certification is a voluntary credential that many employers prefer to promote workers with (NSPS). At various points during your first six years of work as a surveyor, you can obtain this four-tier certification.
Where to Work as a Land Surveyor
Land surveyors carry out both office and fieldwork. In the field, they map an area using the most recent equipment, including high-order GPS, Robotic Total Stations (Theodolites), aerial and terrestrial scanners, and completing calculations and collecting pictures as proof. Then, in the office, Surveyors create blueprints and map the onsite measurements using advanced software like Auto-cad. No two days are ever the same for surveyors because they work on such a wide range of tasks, from land subdivision and mining exploration to tunnel building and large-scale construction. They are professionals at estimating and measuring land. They also supply information and suggestions to direct the work of engineers, architects, and developers. Geodesy, geometry, trigonometry, regression analysis, physics, engineering, metrology, computer programming, and the law are all topics that surveyors deal with daily. The government, the construction industry, self-employed individuals, mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction firms were the top five employers of surveyors.
Land Surveyor Salary Scale
In the UK, starting salaries are typically between £20,000 and £25,000; but, with experience, they could increase to between £30,000 and £50,000. The average salary for a highly skilled land surveyor is around £70,000. Between $52, 174 and $74,760 is the typical yearly salary range for a land surveyor in the US. Based on factors like experience, skill level, gender, or region, compensation might vary greatly. The typical monthly salary for a land surveyor in Nigeria is 135,000 NGN. 66,100 to 211,000 NGN is the range of salaries.