How to become a Concrete Finisher

How to become a Concrete Finisher
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by Jessica Tabinor on

With continuous investment in infrastructure, there are good opportunities in the UK road construction industry for workers at all levels.

Read on to find out more about the skills you’ll need and discover whether concrete finisher jobs are the right fit for you.
               
RATES
£16-40k dependent on experience

HOT SPOTS
Hinkley Point C / HS2

QUALIFICATIONS
Driving Licence, NVQ, City & Guilds

 

What do concrete finisher jobs involve?

If you can handle physically demanding work in all weathers, a career as a concrete finisher might be for you. The work can involve periods away from home, staying in sites all over the country. On busy carriageways, a lot of work is carried out overnight and at weekends to minimise disruption. You’ll be operating heavy machinery and will need a good eye for interpreting technical plans and drawings.

Typical day-to-day tasks for concrete finisher jobs:

  • Building, widening and resurfacing roads, including repairing cracks and potholes
  • Laying pavements, maintaining roadside verges and central reservations
  • Painting road markings, and erecting crash barriers, road signs, traffic lights and street lamps
  • Digging trenches for cables and pipes
  • Gritting roads and clearing snow in winter

 

What is a concrete finisher’s salary?

Average salaries vary according to location and the scale and nature of projects. Entry-level pay is in the region of £16,000 – £20,000 per year. This can rise to between £30,000 and £40,000 with training and experience, for those in supervisory roles.

These figures are intended as a guideline only.

 

What skills do I need?

A driving licence is usually essential, plus the following additional skills and expertise:

  • Qualifications to operate plant and machinery including backhoe excavators, dumper trucks, bulldozers and tracked vehicles.
  • Physical resilience to cope with the demands of heavy outdoor work in all weathers and throughout the year.
  • Practical skills to operate power tools and lighter machinery.
  • The ability to read and interpret technical drawings and plans.


What qualifications do I need?

You’ll need a driving licence and if you’re operating heavy plant and machinery, you’ll need a Level 2 NVQ Certificate and Diploma in Plant Operations (6561).

Many of the core skills are covered by City & Guilds 6157 ‘Streetworks Excavation and Reinstatement”. The course covers essential topics such as location and avoidance of underground apparatus, safety signage, lighting and guarding, with two “key certificates” in the above for supervisors.

Completing an apprenticeship in construction and the built environment or construction civil engineering opens up wider opportunities in specialist road construction for bridges and tunnels.

 

What are the hours and conditions?

Concrete finishers usually work around 37 hours a week, starting early in the morning. In addition, you may have to work overtime during evenings, nights and weekends, although this creates an opportunity to boost your earnings.

Road construction work goes on in all weathers. It can be noisy, dirty and physically demanding. As well wearing ear protectors, a hard-hat and safety boots, you’ll need to wear hi-vis clothing, especially if you’re working close to open carriageways where traffic is still passing.

It’s not uncommon for road builders to travel the country to different sites, staying overnight close to the work location.

 

Career progression

With the right training and experience, you could become a roadworks team supervisor, known as a ‘ganger’.

In addition, there may be opportunities for the right candidates to progress into roles in planning and engineering, working for larger contractors, government agencies and local authorities.

 

Areas of specialism 

There are good prospects for progression into specialist fields like bridge building, tunnelling and motorway construction and maintenance, especially for those with the right training and qualifications, including apprenticeships in aspects of civil engineering and the built environment.
 


To search for opportunities across the sector click here. Or, browse our dedicated HS2 and Hinkley Point C pages for more information.


Cx Jobs

Site Manager

Are you an experienced Site Manager? Do you want to work for a company that is demonstrating sustained periods of growth, as well as having a solid order book of more work to come? Do you want to work for a company that offers autonomy, along with the freedom to develop in your career? Then Vital want to speak to you.Vital resources are currently working with a reputable and well established multi-disciplined contractor to assist them in their search for a new Site Manager. Our client is looking for someone who can demonstrate a background in Rail, Water, Civils, or Infrastructure projectsAs an experienced Manager your responsibilities will include but are not limited to:Daily management of groundworks packages in the central Belt of ScotlandOrganise and Purchase on Site Labour, Materials, and PlantLiaise with the commercial teams and other operational teams to ensure projects are delivered in a timely, and cost effective manner.Organise and Chair meetings with clients and senior management.The successful applicant for this role will be able to demonstrate:Background in a similar positionPrevious experience working within groundworks, deep drainage and, cut & fill works.Experience working as a subcontractor is preferred, but not essentialSMSTS CertifiedFull UK Licence as travel to sites will be requiredAbility to work alone with minimal supervisionFor this our client is willing to offer a competitve salary, along with a comprehensive package.For more information, please contact Jamie Nicholson using the details provided, or click the apply now link.

Senior Quantity Surveyor

Are you an experienced Quantity Surveyor with a background in Civil projects? Do you want to work for a company that is demonstrating sustained periods of growth, as well as having a solid order book of more work to come? Do you want to work for a company that offers autonomy, along with the freedom to develop in your career? Then Vital want to speak to you.Vital resources are currently working with a reputable and well established Groundworks and Civils contractor to assist them in their search for an experienced Senior Quantity Surveyor to assist in the delivery of several high profile projects.As the Quantity Surveyor your responsibilities will include but are not limited to:Working with various forms of Contract (JCT, NEC, FIDIC)Liaising with operational departments to oversee costs on projectsManage diary to ensure site visits are performed in a timely and safe mannerPerform CVR's and Final accounts to chase for paymentAttend client meetings to provide updates on projectsReporting commercial progress to Senior Managers and DirectorsThe successful applicant for this role will be able to demonstrate:Background in a similar positionPrevious experience working in a Sub-Contractor environmentDegree Educated (or equivalent)Full UK Licence as travel to sites will be requiredAbility to work alone with minimal supervisionFor this, our client is willing to offer a competitive salary, along with a comprehensive package.For more information or to apply, please click the link or contact Jamie Nicholson

Quantity Surveyor

Are you an experienced Quantity Surveyor with a background in Civil projects? Do you want to work for a company that is demonstrating sustained periods of growth, as well as having a solid order book of more work to come? Do you want to work for a company that offers autonomy, along with the freedom to develop in your career? Then Vital want to speak to you.Vital resources are currently working with a reputable and well established Groundworks and Civils contractor to assist them in their search for an experienced Senior Quantity Surveyor to assist in the delivery of several high profile projects.As the Quantity Surveyor your responsibilities will include but are not limited to:Working with various forms of Contract (JCT, NEC, FIDIC)Liaising with operational departments to oversee costs on projectsManage diary to ensure site visits are performed in a timely and safe mannerPerform CVR's and Final accounts to chase for paymentAttend client meetings to provide updates on projectsReporting commercial progress to Senior Managers and DirectorsThe successful applicant for this role will be able to demonstrate:Background in a similar positionPrevious experience working in a Sub-Contractor environmentDegree Educated (or equivalent)Full UK Licence as travel to sites will be requiredAbility to work alone with minimal supervisionFor this our client is willing to offer a competitve salary along with a comprehensive package.For more information, please click the apply now link or contact Jamie Nicholson

SharePoint Consultant

We are looking for a Digital Workplace Contractor to join our central Digital Workplace team. This role requires involvement in a variety of projects including intranets, collaboration sites, information architecture, document management, apps, forms, workflows and migration. The ideal candidate will be able to assess, design, implement, handover, review, document and support SharePoint and Office 365 no/low code solutions. RESPONSIBILITIES * SharePoint solution delivery from initial customer contact through to delivery including support * Implement solutions using SharePoint functionality including search, content types, sites, lists, web parts, forms, page layouts, etc. * Automate business processes using Nintex workflows and forms * Migrate sites and content between SharePoint farms using both out of the box and 3rd party migration tools * Ensure delivered solutions are completed as planned and to an agreed budget * Update DevOps and report on progress to stakeholders and management * Work with 3rd party suppliers to ensure a continuous service * You will be a subject matter expert in SharePoint and Office 365 solutions providing guidance across the enterprise to ensure all applications deliver business value * Be aware of any costs that are incurred and ensure the budget holder has agreed to this cost * Conduct requirements gathering, solution design and progress updates with customers * Ensure development work is completed and tested within agreed timescales and to agreed standards * Ensure project scopes and requirements do not deviate from the agreed strategy * Identify and suggest existing or new emerging standards and technologies * Manage your time and priorities to deliver activities to agreed timescales * Ensure all relevant documentation is produced to approved standards * Complete assigned support issues for the Web Services team to agreed SLAs * The above list of job duties is not exclusive or exhaustive and the post holder will be required to undertake such tasks as may reasonably be expected within the post. * Migrating large SharePoint environments QUALIFICATIONS AND REQUIREMENTS Essential * Experience of delivering no/low code SharePoint solutions for the business using enterprise content management, document management, SharePoint, Nintex workflow and forms, O365 power platform and reporting * Excellent understanding of SharePoint on-premises and online * Good experience of understanding and writing business requirements, specification writing and delivery of business focussed technical solutions to an agreed and tested standard * Experience delivering solutions using Agile and Waterfall methodologies * Ability to work both in teams and autonomously, is self-motivated and keeps up to date with trends in technology * Proven experience working in a small team delivering technical solutions to business requirements * Experience of working with internal and external suppliers to ensure specified SLAs are met * Ability to build successful business relationships across a range of stakeholder groups * Responding to and resolution of SharePoint issues and incidents * Experience supporting complex SharePoint and web application solutions across multiple environments and versions * Experience of migrating large SharePoint environments Desirable * Knowledge of the full Office 365 suite of applications including Power Apps, Power Automate and Power BI * Experience with Project Server 2013/2019/Project Online * Knowledge of SharePoint farm server architecture and installations * Experience with JavaScript, HTML, CSS, PnP, PowerShell * Experience with DevOps and Agile development * Information systems related Degree * Microsoft technology qualifications * PRINCE 2 Foundation, ITIL Foundation, BCS Solutions Development Foundation PERSON SPECIFICATION * Demonstrate 100% commitment to excellence in everything you do, a real desire to deliver a quality service to customers at all times * Be flexible, hard-working and thorough * Work collaboratively across IT and non IT departments * Ability to effectively communicate, present and influence others * Understanding of Agile project management * Experience of working in technical teams with large enterprise class systems * Must be able to follow agreed processes and make suggestions for improvements * Good creative thinking, problem solving and analytical skills * Willingness to undertake reasonable travel for work Desirable * Proven ability to build trust with stakeholders * Security cleared SECURITY Must have or be able to gain SC clearance

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