Getting into the Construction Industry
The construction industry comprises hundreds of different job roles in various different areas. Though you may think of bricklaying or roof building when it comes to construction, that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Construction includes project managers, designers, engineers and more.
No matter which job you’re interested in, the construction industry offers challenging and rewarding opportunities with various entry points and huge growth potential.
It’s no wonder over 3.1 million people currently work in the construction industry in the UK.
Do you think you have what it takes to work in this constantly evolving industry? In this article, we explain everything you need to know about getting into the construction industry, including routes to get in, the skills you’ll need to succeed and how to take your career to the next level.
How can I get into the construction industry?
There are generally three main routes to getting your foot in the door of the construction industry. These are:
- Registering as an apprentice
- Taking a post-secondary training course at a university or college
- Searching for an entry-level job and developing skills and experience along the way
These options are not mutually exclusive. For example, you might take a course while also working part-time in an entry-level position.
How to get into the construction industry through education
There are various college courses available for roles within the construction industry. Depending on the role you are interested in, you might obtain Study NVQs, BTECs, A Levels or GCSEs. Some of these courses can be taken online and can be completed entirely from your own home.
The length and type of qualification will depend on the course, which in turn will depend on the type and level of role you are after. In any case, the majority of construction courses are free and provide essential knowledge for making it in the construction industry.
However, many of these courses are online only and are therefore theory only. While theory-based learning can be useful, we also recommend learning out on the job. This means working and earning money while studying for a qualification. This option gives you the best of both worlds and will prepare you for construction in a way that theory-only learning can’t.
How to get into the construction industry through apprenticeships
Apprenticeships are one of the most popular ways to get into the construction industry. This is because apprenticeships offer a combination of paid, hands-on training and learning from a real professional. As an apprentice, you’ll be on the job, learning the practical side of construction while getting help and support from a real professional.
There are many benefits to doing an apprenticeship, including:
- Gaining valuable work experience that will boost your CV
- Developing vital skills that will aid you in future roles
- Getting paid while you’re learning
- In most cases, you’ll be given the opportunity to start full-time work at the end of your apprenticeship
How to get into the construction industry via an entry level job
Another option to landing your dream role in the construction industry is to find an entry-level job requiring no previous experience and developing skills and experience as you go.
Entry-level jobs are a great way to build character and learn about the industry first hand — all while getting paid.
The best place to find entry-level construction jobs is online. You can use general job sites such as Indeed or Reed, or you can find jobs on more specialised construction job sites. The National Careers Service on the GOV.UK website is also useful for discovering the different roles within the construction industry and relevant jobs available near you.
What are the different types of roles available?
Construction covers everything from bricklayer and tiler to CAD technician and architect. Some roles require you to work on a site, others require you to visit people’s homes and some are office based. Some construction jobs are domestic, such as building houses, and others are commercial, such as building public infrastructure. When it comes to construction, there’s something for everyone.
You can find a full list of different roles on the National Careers Service on the GOV.UK website.
Here are some ideas of potential roles:
- Painter & decorator
Planning and design jobs:
- Architectural technologist
- Building technician
- CAD technician
- Acoustics consultant
- Construction contracts manager
- Construction manager
- Construction site supervisor
- Facilities manager
And there are many, many more roles available.
How to create your CV
The key to finding a job in the construction industry is to have a good CV. While there is no universal standard for how your CV should be presented, here are a few key tips to help you stand out among the crowd:
- Begin your CV with basic information, including your full name, home address, mobile number and email address.
- In no more than a few sentences, summarise who you are, what you’re offering and what you’re looking for.
- Only include skills that are relevant to the job you’re applying for. Think about skills you’ve acquired from previous roles and explain how they would be useful in construction.
- List your qualifications, including any construction courses you have completed.
- List your work experience in reverse order. Only include experience that is relevant to the role.
- Keep your CV concise, ideally no longer than two sides of A4.
- Ensure your CV is easy to read with appropriate font size and clear section headings.
- Tailor your CV to the job you are applying for.
There’s no better feeling than landing your dream job, and we’re here to support you every step of the way. As London’s leading builders merchants, we stock all the tools and equipment that construction workers need to do their job. Thanks to our large variety of stock from leading brands, you’ll receive high-quality products for the best possible results. It’s all delivered fast, by us, to you.