Working in construction carries a few myths, one of which is that it’s all manual labour and hard hats. We’re here to show you there’s so much more to construction, with plenty of roles that don’t mean you are always on a construction site.
Architects and architectural consultants
Architects creatively shape our environment by designing the buildings and spaces around us. They bring new structures to life and restore or renovate existing ones.
Architects design buildings and spaces for construction projects. As well as creativity, they use technical drawings and work with other members of a team to ensure what they are designing will work. Although they may visit construction sites, they usually work from an office, or studio space.
Building services engineers
Building service engineers work on buildings to install and maintain their services, like electrics, heating, or power. That’s why many choose to specialise in one particular area, working primarily from an office, but visiting various sites as needed.
Building surveyors will work for a company or independently, visiting buildings and construction sites to advise clients on construction, maintenance or repair, (depending on what stage the building is at). They formulate reports that detail their advice.
Civil, structural, and geotechnical engineers
Similar to building service engineers, civil, structural and geotechnical engineers will work from an office but visit sites to analyse and inspect construction projects and give advice. The reports they make can change and affect the construction project in terms of materials, safety measures, and design.
Learn more about each role by clicking the links above.
Landscape architects create outdoor spaces for a variety of purposes. With this job you could be out surveying sites, carrying out environmental impact assessments, or in the office writing reports, or drawing up contracts and plans; it’s incredibly varied work.
Find out more about becoming a landscape architect
Surveyors give professional advice on a lot of different construction issues, from regulations to specifications. Many choose to specialise in a specific area (like building surveyors, see above) and they will mostly work from an office, visiting sites when necessary.
Construction design roles
Design roles in the construction industry are exciting thanks to all the new tech involved. They will often work as part of a design company, or as a freelance designer who is hired for various projects. Most of their work is done in an office, but they might visit sites to see progress or analyse their design in action to make any recommended changes.
Construction planning careers
A lot of planning goes into a construction project. From materials to coordinating teams on site, someone has to plan how the project will come together. Planners will work with budgets, oversee logistics and work with other teams to make sure everything runs smoothly. The work is often done from an office, but sometimes includes checking-in on sites, or other businesses involved with the project for meetings.
Find out more about becoming a construction planner.
Finance and HR roles
Every project requires HR and finance, and both these roles work behind the scenes to ensure a project runs smoothly. Budgets must be monitored, and workers will need support. These roles will rarely require being physically on a construction site, except when HR may be required to carry out a risk assessment to help keep people safe.
Health, safety and environmental roles
Health and safety is vital in construction, especially as high-powered tools, machinery and heavy materials are often used in projects and building work. Roles such as safety, health, environment, and quality (SHEQ) advisor work from offices, visiting sites to make sure regulations, quality control, and environmental restrictions are being followed.
Find out more about careers in construction
As you can see, you have a lot of options in the construction industry, and not all of them mean wearing a hard hat or doing physical, manual, dirty work.
Thinking of working in construction? See our why choose construction? page for everything you need to know, from what it’s really like to have a job in the industry, to discovering how much money you could make.
You can also browse every job role here.