What does a career in construction management involve?

What does a career in construction management involve?

 

What is a construction manager?

A construction manager is responsible for all aspects of the planning, coordinating and supervising of construction projects. As a construction manager, you’d be in charge of the initial project administration through to the daily supervision of the labour force. From residential construction projects, to large industrial builds, this is a job that offers plenty of variety. 

Construction management involves a lot of teamwork and communication. Within this career, you’d be required to work closely with architects, designers and surveyors to ensure that every stage of the construction process goes smoothly and safely, and stays within budget. 

 

What does a construction manager do on a daily basis?

As a construction manager, you could be tasked with overseeing a whole construction site, or just one part of a bigger project. Some of the typical tasks and responsibilities of a construction manager include:

  • Preparing timetables and schedules
  • Estimating costs and confirming budgets 
  • Setting targets and objectives
  • Overseeing the purchase of materials 
  • Hiring and managing a labour force and subcontractors 
  • Overseeing construction activities on site and maintaining high safety levels 
  • Reporting on progress and costs to clients
  • Ensuring that all legal requirements and regulations are followed
  • Meeting with architects and surveyors to check design documents
  • Solving any unexpected issues that may arise

In this role, your work will generally be split between time in an office and time on the construction site. This will allow you to have a balance between administrative and practical work, as both are equally important. Of course, the nature of this job requires travelling to various sites to both supervise and meet with contractors or clients. You’ll need to be prepared to work long days and potentially spend time away from home. 

 

What is the typical salary of a construction manager?

The typical salary for a construction manager can vary significantly, based on the area and scale of the specific project that you’re working on. On average, starting salaries tend to range between £23,000 to £33,000 and this can rise to £33,000 to £55,000 for more experienced managers. For senior managers at the very peak of their career, the salary can increase even further to around £55,000 to £85,000.

It’s also becoming increasingly common for more experienced construction managers to switch to self-employment. This allows for more flexibility around working hours, the type of projects you work on and the fees you charge. Understandably, choosing to work self-employed does mean that you’ll have less job security, but it can come with great advantages too!

 

What skills are needed to be a construction manager?

This is a job that naturally comes with a lot of responsibility. For this reason, it requires commitment, focus and confidence. As a construction manager, you’ll be the main point of contact for subcontractors, clients and also the general public. Being in charge of such large projects can be quite a lot to take on, so you’d definitely require some key skills. These include:

  • Excellent communication skills
  • Leadership skills 
  • Ability to work in a team and as an individual
  • Great organisational and planning skills
  • Ability to work under pressure
  • Problem-solving skills 
  • Time management skills
  • Mathematical and computing experience
  • In-depth knowledge of construction/building methods

 

Why become a construction manager?

Construction management is certainly not a dying trade. In fact, demand for this role is expected to further increase as the years go on. If you’re looking for a fast-paced, rewarding job full of variety, then this could be the career for you.

If you’re interested in undertaking a construction management degree or a top-up construction management degree, feel free to get in touch.

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