Steel erector

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A steel erector assembles the metal framework of new buildings, and structures like bridges and tunnels.

Salary Range: £14,000 to £35,000

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How to become a steel erector

You can get into this job through:

  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • applying directly
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College

You could take a construction or engineering qualification at college. This could help you to find a trainee job with a company when you finish.

Courses include:

  • Level 1 Certificate in Construction Skills
  • Level 2 Award in Skills for Engineering

Entry requirements

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

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Apprenticeship

You can get into this job through a structural steelwork erector intermediate apprenticeship.

You could also do an engineering construction erector-rigger advanced apprenticeship.

Entry requirements

You’ll usually need:

  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths, for an advanced apprenticeship
  • some GCSEs, usually including English and maths, or equivalent, for an intermediate apprenticeship

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Direct application

You can apply directly for jobs if you have relevant experience and qualifications in construction or engineering.

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Registration

Career tips

You’ll have an advantage if you’ve got a powered access licence to work with mobile elevated platforms.

Further information

You can get more details about working and training as a steel erector from Go Construct and the Engineering Construction Industry Training Board.

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What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You’ll need:

  • 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
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What you’ll do

Day-to-day tasks

Your day-to-day tasks may include:

  • guiding steel loads into position, following engineering instructions
  • making sure steel sections are level
  • bolting or welding steelwork together
  • fixing hand rails and other safety features
  • working from mobile high access platforms as the structure goes up
  • dismantling steelwork on demolition jobs

Working environment

You could work on a construction site.

Your working environment may be cramped, dirty, at height, physically demanding, outdoors in all weathers and noisy.

You may need to wear safety clothing and use safety equipment.

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Career path and progression

With experience, you could become a site supervisor or engineering technician, or move into related areas like welding, site health and safety or training.