Surveyors are experts at measurement and use mathematics and specialised equipment to measure, analyse and present information about the land, and structures on it. Surveyors are capable of measuring just about anything whether it is on land, in the sky or the ocean.
Surveyors use their skills to carry out work such as determining property boundaries, preparing contour maps or setting out the location of roads, tunnels and buildings. Generally, surveyors are the first to commence fieldwork on a project, be it land development or construction. They will use their measurements to prepare plans and maps for other professionals, like architects and engineers. Once the design phase is completed the surveyor will then return to the site to determine the exact and correct location of boundaries, where buildings and roads are to be located, and where the water, electricity and other hidden services will be located.
The practice of surveying in Australia involves the following activities, which may occur above or below the surface of the land, or the sea, and may be carried out in association with other professionals. In doing these activities, surveyors take into account the relevant ethical, legal, financial, environmental and social aspects affecting each project.
Surveying activities include:
- Determining, locating and defining the boundaries of public and private land (including national and state boundaries)
- Maintaining an effective cadastre (land boundary system) to provide an efficient land tenure system that meets the needs of the community and real estate market requirements.
- Collecting, analysing and managing data for geographic information systems.
- Measuring, controlling and monitoring the shape, size and location of physical features or structures.
- Measuring and mapping seabeds, lakes and waterways.
- Measuring tidal movements and current flows and providing information for navigation and maritime developments.
- Providing information and advice, to assist in determining the best sustainable land use and development.
- Contributing to the development and management of urban and rural properties.
- Producing plans, maps, files, data bases, models, charts and reports for clients.
- Planning, estimating, designing, measuring, and implementing projects such as construction works, mineral exploration and mining.
The Surveyors Board of Queensland deals specifically with three speciality areas of surveying: