Fenestration fabricator, window manufacturer, window maker
Window fabricators make glazed windows, doors, glass panels and curtain walls for homes and businesses.
Salary range: £16,000 to £25,000
How to become a window fabricator
You can get into this job through:
- an apprenticeship
- working towards this role
- applying directly
You may be able to do an intermediate apprenticeship in window manufacturing or fenestration fabrication.
You could find an apprenticeship with a company that makes glazed items for homeowners or for business and industrial customers.
Employers will set their own entry requirements but are likely to expect that you have an understanding of maths for working from plans and doing simple calculations.
To get onto an apprenticeship, you’ll find it useful to have:
- some GCSEs, usually including English and maths, or equivalent, for an intermediate apprenticeship
You could begin as a general production operative or labourer with a window manufacturer and work your way up. There are courses you can do while working to help you get into more skilled fabrication jobs.
You could also start as a window fitter and move into fabrication work.
You can apply directly for jobs. Employers set their own entry requirements, though you’ll need maths skills for measuring along with good practical skills.
Experience of general manufacturing and trades like window fitting or joinery may also be useful.
Professional and industry bodies
You can get more information on careers in window fabrication and fenestration from Building Our Skills.
What it takes
Skills and knowledge
- knowledge of maths
- the ability to use, repair and maintain machines and tools
- knowledge of building and construction
- to be thorough and pay attention to detail
- the ability to use your initiative
- physical skills like movement, coordination and dexterity
- knowledge of manufacturing production and processes
- the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
- to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device
What you’ll do
You’ll make and glaze frames for items like:
- curtain walling
You may specialise in manufacturing, using different types of materials like UPVC, aluminium, steel, timber, or wood and aluminium composite. Your work could involve:
- reading and interpreting computer-aided drawings and plans
- measuring and marking out
- setting up machinery and equipment
- using hand, power and machine tools to drill, cut and assemble frames
- installing glass into frames and adding fittings like handles and locks
- cleaning, inspecting and packaging finished products
- loading and unloading delivery vehicles
- completing paperwork, including job sheets and quality assurance documents
You’ll work to production schedules and targets to meet customer demand. There may be opportunities to go on site to do surveys, assist with fitting or do quality control jobs.
You could work in a factory, in a workshop, at a client’s business or at a client’s home.
Your working environment may be physically active.
You may need to wear protective clothing.
Career path and progression
With experience, you could move into supervisory, quality control or management positions. You could work in other types of manufacturing or go into product sales.
You could move into jobs where you might go on site to help fix problems with fenestration products, or do surveys for customers looking to buy new ones, like conservatories.