Working in construction
Working in Construction

Working in Construction

Working in construction

The construction sector offers a fulfilling career path in an ever-evolving industry. Careers in construction offer stability, high salaries, and an opportunity to work with innovative technologies. As non-traditional jobs, careers in construction help some avoid desk jobs. In recent years more women and minorities have chosen to work in construction, making the industry more diverse than before.

847 survey respondents in non-management roles

Lisa Broderick - Director

Lisa has worked with a diverse portfolio of clients across Ireland, the Middle East and Australia. She returned to Ireland as a Director of our Cork business (Tech, Engineering, FS, Accounting, Office Support, Commercial) in 2017. Her role now includes leadership of our HR, Office Support and Marketing recruitment teams based in Dublin. With 18 years of recruitment experience and a previous business background, Lisa has a strong focus on culture, delivery and a customer-centric attitude. Lisa helps Cpl and our customers to attract and retain the best people.

Lisa Broderick - Director

What are the best pathways to a career in construction?

Construction offers a range of intermediary and entry-level career paths, allowing candidates to gain experience at various stages in their working life. A common misconception of the industry is that it is full of builders. While this is a major part of the industry, many highly skilled roles are also available, from architects and electricians to supervisors and engineers. A degree is not needed for every role in construction. A trade school or apprenticeship will help you get started in the field.

​What are the top soft skills needed for a career in construction?

In the construction industry, soft skills are arguably more important than any hard skill you can ever learn. In fact, with a good set of soft skills, hard skills tend to fall into place once management recognises a person's abilities. Soft skills needed for a career in construction include a problem-solving mindset, organisation and time management, adaptability, and flexibility.

​What benefits can construction candidates expect to be offered?

One of the major advantages of the construction industry is the wide variety of roles. Some of which accommodate skill sets from new beginners to experienced professionals.

In recent years, there has been a general improvement in remuneration and benefits offered to those within the construction industry. The main pushing point for this is to attract and maintain talented workers in the industry. Construction candidates can now expect benefits including medical insurance, car allowances and employer pension plans.

What is the difference between SMB and enterprise benefit offerings in construction?

The main benefits of working for a small company are that you will get to know everyone, including the leadership team. The workforce is much smaller and more interconnected.

Responsibilities will often stretch beyond the initial job description. Giving new starters a good understanding of what the company does. Day-to-day life will often be quite varied as people are expected to complete a wide variety of tasks.

This exposure to diverse roles can aid development and improve knowledge of how a company works. This means there are more opportunities for training.

Small and Medium-Sized Businesses (SMB)s benefits for construction candidates will vary. Some benefits include extra annual leave and medical insurance.

Enterprise organisations may provide unique benefits for ambitious construction candidates, such as tailored career learning and development programmes. Some may also offer additional benefits such as on-site gym facilities and additional flexible working options.

1400 survey respondents

What flexible working arrangements can a construction candidate expect?

Some construction candidates may have access to flexible working arrangements. However, due to the rising demands for flexible and remote work, organisations are looking at flexibility options. While this is a particularly difficult ask, office workers can be offered remote work. And on-site staff may be able to adjust working schedules. Employers are recognising a unique opportunity to make lasting changes. These changes could increase motivation in their employees and lead to more positive change within the workplace.

How does company size affect construction salaries?

Construction salaries differ depending on company size, with smaller firms finding it difficult to match offers from larger rivals. However, factors like experience and location will impact pay rates.

How do years of experience affect construction salaries?

For construction professionals, work experience can have an immense effect on salaries. Those who meet the years of experience requirements for a particular role often find themselves at higher salary levels than those without such credentials. Candidates need to understand specific job requirements for a role when applying.

How does higher education or other learning and development affect construction salaries?

The current job market has become increasingly competitive, making higher-level degrees even more valuable for construction applicants. With a strong combination of advanced education and relevant experience, professionals can stand out among their peers. Long-term upskilling also offers the flexibility to change careers, earn a higher salary, or potentially reach an executive position.

What are the expected salary growth levels in construction?

Construction salaries have seen a steady increase in the past years. Employees in Small to Medium Sizes Businesses (SMBs) can expect to see an average growth of five percent annually. While enterprise-level organisations are looking at seven to ten percent salary increments year on year.

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