The construction industry is a fairly substantial source of Canadian jobs: In 2017, almost 1.4 million people were employed in the field. That is one in every 13 workers employed in Canada!
Construction and staffing firms go hand-in-hand, largely because the industry frequently functions on a project-by-project basis, but also because–regardless of a position’s permanence or lack thereof–it will often require a lot of know-how on the fly. That means candidates who have already been screened and evaluated come in handy.
But understanding exactly what construction workers do and which are employed on particular projects, knowing what exactly are the different types of construction jobs one can think of building a career in, calls for a deeper knowledge of the construction sector. Let’s look at a few:
1. Construction Carpenter
We’ll start with one of the most well-known and ancient construction jobs, one that’s still as reliable a source of work and income today as it ever was. Carpentry typically deals with cutting, shaping, and installing materials during the construction phase; it’s the primary hammer-and-nail, drilling-and-sawing part of the job. While most still associate the word with woodworking, nowadays it tends to encompass a much wider variety of materials. Some sources put the average salary for a construction carpenter in Canada at $24 an hour.
2. Construction Electrician
Electricians have a lot of crossover amongst various industries, but their role in the field of construction shouldn’t be understated. While we may think of electricians as the people who come in to fix the wiring or circuitry in a house or building, it’s also an electrician that installs that wiring or circuitry in the first place. Construction electricians are also responsible for total remodels of electrical systems. They’re needed in the building and/or rebuilding of literally any structure that features lighting. Their salary can vary greatly, and also depends on the province.
Masons are responsible for the building blocks of a construction–literally. They’re responsible for the part of projects that involves individual, separate pieces (which are themselves often referred to as “masonry”). These pieces are then glued together, generally by a substance such as mortar. Masons work with materials such as brick, marble, and concrete blocks. Their salary varies considerably, averaging around $38.43 an hour in Calgary, $33 an hour in Toronto, $29.79 in Winnipeg, and $23.25 in New Brunswick.
Much like electricians, we often think of plumbers as the people who come in to fix the plumbing in a building, and may neglect to consider who placed it there in the first place. Construction plumbers are in charge of installing and/or reworking the systems used for drinking water, sewage, and draining.
Welders are familiar in the world of construction, using machines c
alled welding power supplies–which blast a superheated electrical current–to fuse materials together. They work especially frequently with metals, but also with plastics, and usually need to wear an array of specially designed articles of clothing and equipment for safety purposes. An average welder may make around $22.86 per hour in Canada, though like other construction jobs, the number can fluctuate greatly.
Glaziers cut and install glass, making their work in the construction industry invaluable when it comes to windows, skylights, display cases, and increasingly, the entire exterior surface of towering office buildings and condos. They usually use cutting boards, special blades, glazing knives, and a variety of glass-safe adhesive materials in their work.
A plasterer, as the name suggests, works with plaster—the protective coating on walls and ceilings. They often need to use fewer tools than many of their construction brethren.