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Construction is an incredibly important sector- as Greater Manchester grows, people who work in construction help to make that growth a physical reality. The construction sector can offer someone a chance to grow and flexibly work across several different agencies and companies. There’s opportunity to become your own boss, specialise as a specific contractor, and really make your mark on the industry as a tradesperson. 

Because there’s so many avenues within the sphere of construction, and with so many options available to you, you can really carve your own path. A career in construction offers competitive pay, with trade roles paying well, and specialist skills being rewarded well. This career can also offer a level of job satisfaction- as you work, you will literally see the difference you are making, knowing that you’re a key part of building your city.


Here are some of the typical job opportunities within Construction, and how you can make your first steps within the sector.

Architects develop and design building plans, to create buildings and the areas around them. Some architects also work to restore older buildings. An Architect will be knowledgeable about building laws and budgets, and will work to manage the construction of the buildings they design.

Learn more here.

Bricklayers build houses, can repair walls and chimneys, and also refurbish and repair decorative stonework. Bricklayers can also work on restorative projects. With bricklaying like in many areas in construction, there is the opportunity to specialise in the skill, and even become self-employed and set up your own business.

Learn more here.

Labourers work on practical tasks on construction sites from the start to the end of building projects. For some, this is the first step on the ladder, as it can give you an idea of how to work on site and to practice proper health and safety protocol. 

Learn more here.

As a building surveyor, you'll complete detailed reports, known as building surveys; within which you'll identify defects and advise on repair, maintenance and restoration options.

Projects can include existing buildings, buildings of architectural or historic importance and the development of new ones. You may implement preventative measures to keep buildings in good condition and look for ways to make buildings sustainable.

Learn more here.

Demolition Operatives dismantle buildings and are also able to remove hazardous waste materials and identify usable materials. These operatives will prepare sites for demolition, and will operate under heavy health and safety guidance to make sure that sites are safe before they’re destroyed.

Learn more here.

Qualifications and Training

There are a wide range of Construction qualifications and accreditations available to the residents of Greater Manchester. Read on to learn more about what options are open to you.

As mentioned above, you must be actively invested and interested in the satisfaction of building or repairing things, and being confident about working with your hands. A large part of the job satisfaction within the construction sector is in “a job well done” and seeing the direct result of your expert work resulting in a repaired wall or a paved floor, or correctly fitted and working pipe system.

In terms of transitional skills, people skills are a must. People service skills learned through retail or customer service roles can be very helpful, as a lot of construction roles will have you working with a number of other individuals- team mates or clients- who you will need to communicate effectively with.

Qualifications that are available to you include:

  • Bricklaying 
  • Carpentry and Joinery
  • Construction management 
  • Construction Skills
  • Electrical installation
  • Painting and decorating
  • Plastering
  • Plumbing

An apprenticeship allows you to “learn while you earn” and can work best for people wanting to try a new career or who feel they are practical learners. A common misconception about apprenticeships is that they are mainly for school leavers- apprenticeships are for people of all ages and are a great way to restart your career, change your career, or progress in your current career.

Learn more.

There are a wide range of adult courses available across Greater Manchester. Many of these  courses are fully funded, which means there is no cost to you, or your employer if you are currently employed. These courses have a range of levels, meaning you can boost your skill set, or go for a full qualification in an area that interests you.

Learn more.

If you would like to study for a university-level degree but don’t have the traditional qualifications, Access to Higher Education courses could help you to achieve your goal. There are a variety of resources available to you to help you achieve. 

Learn more.

Considering university, or a degree-level course? Higher education is the route you’d be going down- whether you’d be looking to study full-time, or if a more flexible approach would work for you, there are plenty of options available. If you’re looking to increase your skill set, there are a wide variety of options open to you- to learn more about how you can achieve in Greater Manchester.

Learn more.

If you work on a construction site you will be required to apply for a Construction Skills Certificate Scheme (CSCS) card, this card provides proof that you have the appropriate training and qualifications for the job.

For more information, click here.

Progressing in your career

Whether you are looking to develop in your current role, or looking to take the next steps in your career there is a variety of training and pathways you can consider.

Skills Bootcamps are flexible courses of up to 16 weeks, giving people the opportunity to build up sector-specific skills and fast-track to a guaranteed interview with a local employer.

Developed by the Government as part of the Lifetime Skills Guarantee, Skills Bootcamps are being delivered in partnership with employers, providers and local authorities, to help people gain skills for life, help support skills demands in their local area, and ultimately – to help people get a better job.

Learn more about Skills Bootcamps here.

There are a wide range of adult courses available across Greater Manchester. Many of these 
courses are fully funded, which means there is no cost to you, or your employer if you are 
currently employed. These courses have a range of levels, meaning you can boost your skill set, 
or go for a full qualification in an area that interests you.

Learn more.

To get started in a career in Construction, enthusiasm and drive will be important. Working in construction can be a physically demanding job, so you will need to take that into consideration when looking for work in construction, too.

The initial roles that would get you the experience you’d need would be as a Bricklayer or Construction Labourer- however, to work on site, you’ll need proper accreditation first. Consider looking into apprenticeships in the construction field (remembering that these roles are open to people of all ages). These roles will give you valuable experience in the field, while also helping you to brush up on your people skills.

Learn more about apprenticeships here.

Getting started

  • Training
  • Apprenticeship
  • Construction Labourer

Enhancing your skills

  • Bricklayer
  • Demolition Operative

Managing others

  • Construction Site Manager
  • Architect

Core functions

Want to work in Construction, but the traditional avenues aren’t for you? There are also a wide range of roles that utilise different skill sets to support you into the industry.

There are many exciting options in the accounting profession as you can work in a variety of industries. Accounting pays well, offers prospects for advancement, and allows you to assist organisations such as hotels, bars or restaurants to thrive into the next decade and beyond. 

Business administration is a fast-paced job with opportunities to advance and work in a range of sectors and businesses. It’s also a professional route with many transferable skills that may lead to lots of options if you decide to move into another business sector later in life.

HR professionals’ day-to-day responsibilities are to ensure employee wellbeing and happiness. A well-trained and organised HR department is at the heart of any hospitality establishment hiring many employees and is essential for maintaining a motivated and productive workforce.

As technology advances, so too do the possibilities for more effective marketing. There’s a variety of professional options to select from, whether you want to get into management, analytics, product design, or brand management to name but a few. With this role, your skills become transferable, allowing you more flexible career options.

As an IT professional, you will develop the skills to support internal and external customers, helping them to be productive by problem-solving and troubleshooting non-routine issues.

Next steps

The world of construction is broad and rife with opportunity. If this is a career you want to build for yourself, there’s a lot of options open to you. A career in this sector could 
stick with you for your entire life, if you’re willing to keep learning and growing with it. If this is 
a career path you’re interested in, there’s a lot of support out there available for you in Greater 
Manchester- find local vacancies here.

If you're interested in learning more about the construction sector, click here to find out about Greater Manchester's industry careers.

Want to stay updated on the latest in Construction, and join a community of people who work within the sector? On The Tools offers up-to-date news- click here to learn more.

Interested in working in Construction in Greater Manchester? Register your interest today by filling out the online form, found here.

For more information about gaining these qualifications and get your career started in the sector, visit the National Careers Service website at: or call 0800 100 900