Construction managers oversee the planning and supervising of construction projects of all kinds. Within that framework, there are many different types of experts who handle particular aspects of a project, each with varied specialties and job titles. They utilize their skills, education, and tools like construction management software to coordinate the many moving parts of a construction project.
Interested in pursuing work in construction management? Here's information about seven different career paths in the field.
1. Construction Project Manager
Average Annual Salary: $150K - $200K+
Assistant PMs typically start at $90K-$125K, but Senior PMs can make well over $200K depending on experience and location. PMs in states like California and New York tend to make about $20K-$50K more than PMs in other states.
Job Description: Construction Project Managers organize and oversee entire construction projects to make sure they are completed on time and within budget. They manage the budget and define the scope of the project to determine the project timeline. They choose subcontractors to hire, delegate specific responsibilities to them, and supervise as needed. They are also in charge of coordinating equipment and materials. They're ultimately responsible for reporting progress on the project to the client. Unlike many other construction roles, Project Managers typically work in an office vs. in the field.
Similar titles/also known as: Assistant PM, Senior PM, Operations Manager
Search for Construction Project Manager jobs here.
A common starting point for a Project Manager career path is a Project Engineer.
Average Annual Salary: Project Engineers typically make $70K-$95K depending on their location, firm, and types of projects they work on.
Job Description: As on-site technicians, Field Engineers are responsible for helping to carry out the blueprint designs at real-life locations. They may oversee installation, inspection, maintenance, troubleshooting, and repair of technical equipment, supervise work crews on the job, and/or conduct research studies during the project. They're also frequently called upon to explain any complex engineering issues relevant to the project to others. This is an entry-level Construction role people get right out of college. If you eventually want to become a Project Manager, you will typically start as a Project Engineer.
Similar titles/also known as: Field Service Technician, Equipment Engineer, Project Engineer
Common Career Path: Project Engineer > Sr. Project Engineer > Associate Project Manager > Project Manager > Senior Project Manager
Search for Field Engineer jobs here.
2. Construction Superintendent
Average Annual Salary: $70K - $200K+
The salaries for Construction Superintendents can range greatly depending on years of experience and location. Junior-level Superintendents make typically make around $70K, but Senior-level Superintendents can make more than $200K. Firm size and project type can also contribute to salary.
Job Description: Construction Superintendents oversee and coordinate all the activities that occur at a construction site. They are in the field managing workers and directing different subcontractors. They oversee scheduling, keeping track of what gets done at construction sites, and updating Project Managers on changes to a project’s timeline. They typically start in the trade as a subcontractor getting experience and then move to a general contractor to work as Assistant Superintendent before becoming a Superintendent.
Similar titles/also known as: Construction Site Manager, Construction Managers, General Superintendents, Field Supervisor, Foreman, Field Manager, Field Operations Manager
Assistant Superintendent > Superintendent > Lead Superintendent > Senior Superintendent
Search for Construction Superintendent jobs here.
3. Construction Estimator
Average Annual Salary:
Entry-level Construction Estimators make about $80K, but this depends on the location and the type of firm you work for.
Job Description: Construction Estimators are tasked with creating cost estimates for the labor, equipment, materials, and other resources that will be needed in order to carry out a project. They may also consult with subcontractors and suppliers to gather quotes, draft project proposals and formal bids, and/or advise stakeholders regarding payment procedures for the project.
Similar titles/also known as: Cost Planner, Project Estimator, Pre-Construction Manager, Project Controller
Search for Construction Estimator jobs here.
4. Service Manager / Sub Contractor / Electrician Engineering / Mechanical Engineering
Average Annual Salary: $55K - $150K
Job Description: Facilities Managers make sure that the buildings and equipment they take care of are properly maintained for the people who work there. They make sure cleaning, maintenance, safety, inspections, security, emergency planning, and other related tasks are carried out at the facility. They may also handle other tasks relevant to the specific site, like storage management, upkeep of communications infrastructure, or renovation projects.
Similar titles/also known as: Maintenance Manager, Facilities Administrator, Facilities Supervisor, Facilities Director, Building Maintenance Manager, Building and Grounds Supervisor
Search for Facilities Manager jobs here.
5. Renewable Project Manager / EPC Project Manager
Average Annual Salary: $90-160K depending on location
Job Description: Renewables Project Managers often drive the production of and manage the engineering initiatives of renewable energy projects. They often supervise the work of contractors and ensure everything is running on time and within budget.
Similar titles/also known as: Clean Energy Project Manager, Renewable Energy Project Manager
Search for Renewable Project Manager jobs here.
6. Sustainability Consultant
Average Annual Salary: $65k - $85K
Job Description: As experts in eco-friendly practices and environmental policy, Sustainability Consultants are brought on to help construction groups evaluate the environmental impact of their projects and come up with ways to make them more environmentally friendly and sustainable.
Similar titles/also known as: Green Consultant, Eco Consultant, Environmental Management Consultant
Search for Sustainability Consultant jobs here.
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