ADVICE

Construction careers: 5 companies to kickstart your career in the UK

SOURCE: JOSEPH PREZIOSO / AFP
The UK will need over 200,000 new construction workers by 2025.


By U2B Staff 

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If you’re someone who enjoys working outdoors and with your hands, construction careers are an area worth exploring. The Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) projects that by 2025, the industry will need to recruit 217,000 new workers to meet demand, making it a promising area to work in.

There are plenty of apprenticeships in the UK for those who enjoy working on building sites. Some roles and specialisations include carpentry, plasterer, bricklayer, construction project manager to quantity surveyor. 

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You don’t necessarily need a formal education to get your foot in the door — many learn through apprenticeships or on-the-job training. Apprenticeships in the UK consist of four levels and require different levels of qualification.

This includes intermediate (Level 2, or equivalent to GCSE), advanced (Level 3, or equivalent to A Level), higher (Levels 4-7, or equivalent to a foundation degree or above) and degree (Levels 6 and 7, or equivalent to a bachelors and masters respectively). 

A debt-free education

The best thing about apprenticeships in the UK is that you don’t have to pay tuition fees as it will be covered by your employer and the government. UCAS notes that a full-time apprenticeship is essentially a full-time job with a study or training element.

Apprentices can expect to work approximately 30 hours a week with their employer, in addition to a day of study either at their workplace, university, college or online. Every apprenticeship will vary as the requirements will be stipulated in one’s contract.

“But the common draw for apprentices is always the same: The reward for delicately balancing your lifestyle around work and study, is that your tuition fees are covered by your employer and the government,” notes UCAS.

Construction careers at 5 companies

So, how can you kick off your construction career? A variety of UK employers offer apprenticeship programmes at various levels. Here are some UK companies that provide construction-related apprenticeships:

Amey

Amey offers apprenticeships at the intermediate, advanced, higher and degree level. Their website notes that their apprentices work across every area of their diverse business, from rail design and civil engineering to project management, among others.

Skanska

Skanska offers a level 2 or level 3 apprenticeships. You can expect to spend 20% of your time on the job learning and 80% applying that learning in your chosen profession.

Their apprentice roles include but are not limited to: engineering, civil engineer, mechanical and electrical engineer, operations, plumbing, piling, welder and mechanical fitter.

Arup

Arup recruits around 70 apprentices across their UK offices annually.

They offer apprenticeships at the intermediate to degree level. Their apprentices study a wide range of professional disciplines: civil engineering, building services, structural engineering, rail design, business and admin, project management, transport planning, quantity surveying, environmental consulting and more.

Their locations include Belfast, Cardiff, Edinburgh and Glasgow in Scotland, and Bristol, Leeds, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Newcastle, Nottingham, Sheffield, Solihull, Winchester and York in England.

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Mott Macdonald

Mott Macdonald is a global engineering, management and development consultancy. 

They offer advanced and degree apprenticeships in civil engineering, transport planning, building services engineering and quantity surveying, among others.

Balfour Beatty

Balfour Beatty offers apprenticeships all around the UK, in all kinds of professional fields. Their apprenticeships include civil and mechanical engineering, quantity surveying, electrician, highways maintenance and construction management.

Their apprenticeships are offered at the intermediate, advanced, higher and degree levels.