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Construction manager

Site manager

Construction managers are responsible for the practical management and planning of every stage of a construction project. They ensure building projects are completed safely, within budget and on time. As a construction manager, you’d oversee schedules of work and delegate tasks to your team to ensure that each phase of a build goes to plan.

Average salary*




Typical hours per week

41 - 43

How to become a construction manager

There are several routes to becoming a construction manager. You can gain the qualifications you need to start you on your career path by doing a university course or an apprenticeship. 

You should explore these routes to becoming a construction manager, to find out which is the right one for you. Although some of these options have certain qualification requirements, many employers are more interested in people who are enthusiastic, willing to learn and can follow instructions.

You may need a Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) card to work on a construction site. 


You could do a foundation degree, Higher National Diploma (HND) or undergraduate degree accredited by the Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB). Relevant subjects include building studies, surveying, estimating, construction or civil engineering, or construction site management.

You’ll generally need: 

  • 1 - 2 A levels, or equivalent (foundation degree or HND)
  • 2 - 3 A levels, or equivalent (undergraduate degree).

> Equivalent entry requirements explained

> Find a university course

> Funding advice


An apprenticeship with a construction firm is a good way into the industry.  

You could do a higher or degree apprenticeship in construction management, or design and construction management. For this, you’ll usually need 4 - 5 GCSEs (or equivalent) at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels (or equivalent).

Apprenticeships are open to anyone over the age of 16. As an apprentice, you will be fully employed by your company and expected to work a minimum of 30 hours a week. Your time will be split between on-the-job experience and a college or training provider. 

> Find an apprenticeship near you

> Guide to apprenticeships


If you’ve already worked as an estimator, building technician, surveyor or site supervisor for several years and have proven management experience or qualifications, you may be able to apply directly to an employer for a role as a construction manager.

Work experience

Work experience is essential to gaining employment within the construction industry. You could gain this at school, or by working weekends and holidays with a company or relative who works as a construction manager. Potential employers will always be pleased to see work experience listed on your CV.

> Find out more about work experience


Additional skills which may benefit anyone considering a job as a construction manager include: 

  • Knowledge of building and construction
  • Leadership qualities
  • Time management skills
  • Excellent verbal communication skills
  • Ability to problem-solve and use your initiative.

What does a construction manager do?

As a construction manager, you will be responsible for overseeing all the logistics of a construction project. Duties may include creating work schedules for your team, and allocating responsibilities. You might also be required to conduct site visits and report to senior managers on project progress.

The role of a construction manager involves the following duties: 

  • Overseeing the logistical requirements of a project
  • Delegating work to colleagues within your team
  • Meeting regularly with clients, third parties and other managers to report on progress
  • Setting targets, objectives and responsibilities for all supervised staff
  • Regularly reviewing timings, budget, labour, risk and project plans to ensure work stays on track
  • Setting and agreeing budgets
  • Conducting site visits to inspect work, check materials and ensure staff are following health and safety guidelines
  • Dealing with contracts and mitigating the impact of any issues
  • Ensuring the delivery of high-quality work within contract timescales
  • Working in an office and on a construction site.

How much could you earn as a construction manager?

The expected salary for a construction manager varies as you become more experienced.

  • Newly trained construction managers can earn £25,000 - £35,000
  • Trained construction managers with some experience can earn £35,000 - £48,000
  • Senior, chartered or master construction managers can earn £48,000 - £60,000*
  • Self-employed construction managers set their own pay rates.

Hours and salary depend on location, employer and any overtime you may do.

* Salaries have been collected from multiple industry sources and have been updated as of 2019


Check out the latest construction manager vacancies: 

As these are external websites, the number of vacancies related to your preferred role may vary. New opportunities will be posted as they come up.

Career path and progression

As a construction manager, you could progress to become a senior or project manager, or a construction director.

You could specialise and oversee a particular area of construction, such as contracts or planning. Alternatively, you might set up as a self-employed consultant.

Progression Opportunities

Explore the progression opportunities below

  • Current role Construction manager Construction managers are required to handle the practical side of managing & pl...
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  • Current role Contracts manager During a construction project, the contracts manager overseas the contracts proc...
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  • Current role Senior manager Senior managers and heads of department are responsible for leading teams of peo...
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  • Current role Project manager Oversee construction projects from start to finish in order to achieve successfu...
    Read more
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