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First-Line Supervisors/Managers of Construction Trades and Extraction Workers

Supervisors in this field oversee and coordinate the activities of construction and extraction workers. Responsibilities include estimating materials and ordering supplies.



By Alma Abreu
Posted 2012



Workers in this field are responsible for supervising and coordinating the activities and tasks of extraction or construction workers. They inspect and examine equipment, analyze progress as well as examine construction sites to make sure that safety precautions and work specifications are achieved. They may need to read blueprints and specifications to identify requirements for construction or to plan certain procedures. To complete jobs, they estimate materials and worker requirements, order supplies and materials, as well as locate, measure and mark sites for construction work.

They also work with management, technical staff, other departments and contractors to resolve issues or to coordinate operations and activities. Administrative duties include recording information related to production, operations data and personnel. They assign duties to employees based on the requirements of certain jobs.

Summary

  • Supervisors work at construction sites, at the field or main office.
  • Most supervisors have a high school diploma or its equivalent.
  • Previous construction experience is very important in obtaining a job as a supervisor.
  • Postsecondary education such as a bachelor’s degree can provide opportunities for advancement.
  • According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment in this field is expected to grow faster than average through 2018.

Work Environment for First-Line Supervisors/Managers of Construction Trades and Extraction Workers

First line supervisors in this field work at construction or extraction sites, field offices or main offices. Most decisions related to daily activities are carried out at work sites. These supervisors may be on call 24 hours a day and have to deal with delays associated with emergencies at the work site or bad weather. Even though the work is typically dangerous, accidents and injuries can still occur and supervisors must take safety precautions when working at construction sites.

Education, Training and Licensing

Most supervisors have a high school diploma or the equivalent. Previous construction or extraction experience is very important for entering this occupation. Experience can be obtained through internships or a job in the construction industry.

Obtaining a bachelor’s degree in construction management, construction science, construction engineering or building science can provide more opportunities for career advancement. Typical coursework in these programs include site planning, project control and development, construction methods, value analysis, contract administration, cost estimating, business and financial management, safety building codes and standards, engineering and architectural sciences and math, as well as information technology.

Employment Figures, Projections, Outlook and Earnings for First-Line Supervisors/Managers of Construction Trades and Extraction Workers

According to research published by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), construction worker supervisors held about 698,000 jobs in 2008. BLS records for May 2009 indicate that the average annual wage for first-line supervisors/managers of construction trades and extraction workers was $58,330. Employment in this field is forecasted by the BLS to grow faster than average through 2018 compared to other occupations.

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