ASTM E2516 - 11

    Standard Classification for Cost Estimate Classification System

    Active Standard ASTM E2516 | Developed by Subcommittee: E06.81

    Book of Standards Volume: 04.12


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    Significance and Use

    Use of this classification will improve communication among all the stakeholders involved with preparing, evaluating, and using cost estimates.

    The various parties that use cost estimates often misinterpret the quality and value of the information available to prepare cost estimates, the various methods employed during the estimating process, the accuracy level expected from estimates, and the level of risk associated with estimates.

    This classification applies the degree of project definition as the primary characteristic for determining an estimates classification.

    Using this classification will help those involved with project estimates to avoid misinterpretation of the various classes of cost estimates and to avoid their misapplication and misrepresentation. Improving communications about estimate classifications reduces business costs and project cycle times by avoiding inappropriate business and financial decisions, actions, delays, or disputes caused by misunderstandings of cost estimates and what they are expected to represent.

    This classification is intended to be generic and so provide a system for the classification of cost estimates in any industry. There are also references to specific industries, for cost estimate classification as applied in: AACE International, Process Industry 18R-97, and AACE International, Building/General Construction Industry 56R-08.

    Estimate classifications provide valuable additional reporting information when used as an adjunct to Practice E1804.

    1. Scope

    1.1 This classification provides a generic classification system for cost estimates and provides guidelines for applying the classification to cost estimates.

    1.2 This classification maps the phases and stages of cost estimating to a generic maturity and quality matrix, keyed to a degre of project definition, that can be applied across a wide variety of industries.

    1.3 The Cost Estimate Classification System has been developed in a way that:

    1.3.1 provides a common understanding of the concepts involved with classifying cost estimates;

    1.3.2 defines and correlates the major characteristics used in classifying cost estimates, and;

    1.3.3 uses the degree of project definition as the primary characteristic used to categorize estimate classes.


    2. Referenced Documents (purchase separately) The documents listed below are referenced within the subject standard but are not provided as part of the standard.

    ASTM Standards

    E631 Terminology of Building Constructions

    E833 Terminology of Building Economics

    E1804 Practice for Performing and Reporting Cost Analysis During the Design Phase of a Project

    Other Standards

    AACEInternational Recommended Practice No 56R-08: Cost Estimate Classification System - As Applied in Building and General Construction Industries


    ICS Code

    ICS Number Code 03.100.60 (Accountancy)

    UNSPSC Code

    UNSPSC Code


    DOI: 10.1520/E2516-11

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    ASTM E2516

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