October is Careers in Construction Month, a Great Time to Explore the Many Opportunities Available in the Residential Construction Industry

October is the official Careers in Construction Month, which is a campaign to increase awareness and inspire the next generation of construction craft professionals. There is huge demand, growth and potential in this field.  The US Bureau of Labor Statistics states the overall employment of construction laborers and helpers is projected to grow 5 percent from 2019 to 2029, faster than the average for all occupations. 

We wanted to take this opportunity to explore the many opportunities available specifically in the residential construction industry. While carpentry work is the most obvious option in this field, a wide range of skills and talents are needed in an established home construction firm. If you haven't considered the construction industry as a career option, you may want to read on to learn more about the exciting opportunities available in residential home construction field.

Carpentry Work -

If you enjoy working with your hands, using hand tools and seeing the project you worked on come to fruition, this may be a great option for you. Carpenters spend their time working in the field at the various job sites. They may find themselves working outdoors on a beautiful day or working indoors on the interior of the home. Carpentry work is a skilled trade with room for advancement in the field. Most positions are learned through on the job training, some may be learned through an apprenticeship program or through a trade school. 

Here are a few of the types of carpenters we hire at PortSide Builders:

Framing Carpenter
Measures and cuts lumber according to home plan and specifications.  Assembles and nails framework. Installs windows, doors, insulation and venting. 

Roofing Carpenter
Roofing crew applies the shingles. Measures and cuts materials according to specifications.

Siding / Decks
We have specific carpenter crews that specialize in applying siding and building decks. 

Finish Carpenters
Specializes in hanging doors, installing all the trim work around the windows, doors, and baseboard.

Service Personnel
Knowledge in all types of construction so that they are able to go into any home and fix any type of service work required.

 Project Management - 

If you are organized, enjoy managing projects at a higher level, enjoy working with people and leading teams, you may be a good fit for one of the following roles. People in these roles spend some of their time in the office and some of their time at the job sites, often juggling many projects at once. 

Construction Supervisor
Representative for the field crews, and is responsible for scheduling the carpenters.

Construction Operations Manager
Oversees the construction of each job and is in charge of personnel responsible for coordinating the jobs.

Site Coordinator
Responsible for preparing the site for construction and staking out the location of the home or business.

Creates a materials list and submits it to subcontractors for bids.

Home Drafting and Design -

A keen eye, attention to detail, critical thinking, math and technical skills as well as spatial awareness, and creativity are some of the skills that would be needed in these types of roles. 

Uses the CAD program to develop a complete and detailed set of drawings and specifications for a building. Knowledge of structural engineering and building codes is also helpful. 

Home Product Selection Designer - Works directly with customers on the home selection process. This includes the exterior finishes, such as siding style and color, window trim, roofing selections, stonework and more. They will also coordinate with the customer regarding the interior finishes such as cabinet styles, countertops, flooring, lighting and more. 

Sales / Marketing / Customer Service -

If you enjoy working with people, have good interpersonal skills, are a good listener and communicator you may be a good fit for one of these more customer facing roles. Depending on the role, these jobs may have you out in the field at the job sites or working in a traditional office setting. 

Custom Designer/Salesperson
Meets with clients to discuss their ideas and requirements in order to create a preliminary set of home plans with specifications and to sell the job.

Construction Coordinator
Coordinates all construction activities and acts as a liaison between builder, owner and subcontractor.

Produces all advertising and promotional materials used to promote the company. 

Customer Service Representative
Meets with clients to discuss service needs, and schedules work to be completed.

Operations and Administration - 

As with any successful business, management and operations are an integral part of what makes that business successful. Depending on the role, having an understanding of budgeting, projections and planning would be essential. There are also important administrative roles in this field that require specific office skills, including familiarity with word-processing, spreadsheets, and publishing software, having excellent phone etiquette, and good organizational and communication skills. These rolls are typically spent in a traditional office setting.

Team of managers responsible for overseeing all departments and personnel. Work to obtain jobs and to ensure the company’s growth.

Receptionist/Secretary/Office Manager
Handles incoming calls, directs walk-in clients, types contracts, letters and other communications.

Keeps accurate accounting of all payables and receivables.  Handles all daily banking needs and maintains accurate reporting of all income and expenses.

Training and Education

For some, their introduction to carpentry begins in high school through a technical education courses. Here they gain a variety of experience working with construction tools, equipment and materials. Many companies will hire an individual with the qualities they are looking for, such as being responsible, hard-working, a team-player and offer on the job training and apprenticeship programs. Some positions, such as accounting, operations, administration and marketing may require an associates or four year degree, or significant experience in the respective area. 

For more information, take a look at these resources:

NWTC Construction Apprenticeship Programs

NWTC Construction Management-Carpentry Associate Degree

Scholarship opportunity - Door County Home Builders Association Education Awards

Build Your Future - Construction Career Training