Scaffolders put up and take down scaffolding on buildings that allows workers to work safely at height.
Salary Range: £14,000 to £30,000
How to become a scaffolder
You can get into this job through:
- a college course
- an apprenticeship
- working towards this role
You could do a Level 1 or 2 Certificate in Construction Operations. This will teach you some of the skills needed for this job.
You’ll usually need:
- 2 or fewer GCSEs at grades 3 to 1 (D to G), or equivalent, for a level 1 course
- 2 or more GCSEs at grades 9 to 3 (A* to D), or equivalent, for a level 2 course
You can train through a scaffolder intermediate apprenticeship.
This will usually take 18 months to complete. You’ll do on-the-job training and spend time at a college or training provider.
You’ll usually need:
- some GCSEs, usually including English and maths, or equivalent, for an intermediate apprenticeship
You could join a company as a trainee scaffolder or scaffolding labourer, and get qualifications on the job. Employers would look for a good general standard of education. GCSEs in maths, English, and design and technology could be useful, although not always essential.
- you’ll need a Construction Industry Scaffolders Record Scheme (CISRS) safety card or equivalent to train and work on a construction site
Previous experience as a construction site labourer may be helpful when looking for work.
You can find out more about becoming a scaffolder from Go Construct.
What it takes
Skills and knowledge
- knowledge of building and construction
- to be thorough and pay attention to detail
- patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
- the ability to work well with others
- the ability to use your initiative
- physical skills like movement, coordination, dexterity and grace
- sensitivity and understanding
- the ability to work well with your hands
- to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device
Restrictions and requirements
You’ll need to:
- be able to cope with working at height
- have a good level of fitness
What you’ll do
Your day-to-day tasks may include:
- unloading scaffolding from a lorry
- creating a stable base on the ground
- putting up scaffolding poles and attaching horizontal tubes to them
- fixing scaffolding to a building
- laying planks across scaffolding for workers to walk on
- fixing guard rails and safety nets
- taking down scaffolding after a job
You could work on a demolition site, at a client’s business or on a construction site.
Your working environment may be at height, dirty, outdoors in all weathers, physically demanding and you’ll travel often.
You may need to wear safety clothing and use safety equipment.
Career path and progression
With experience, you could become a scaffolding gang supervisor. You could also become a scaffolding designer or construction manager, or set up your own business.