The construction industry offers a multitude of career growth opportunities. There are plenty of roles that may suit your skillset, and it’s an industry where hands-on experience matters most. When you’re fresh out of graduation, you have an opportunity to explore different positions, building your resumé over time to create additional, more senior opportunities down the line.
If you’re not convinced the construction industry is for you, we’ve compiled the top reasons you should reconsider and some of the best construction companies to keep on your radar.
Top Reasons To Explore Jobs In Construction
1. Labor Shortages
The construction industry faces significant labor shortages. According to The HBI Construction Labor Market Report from 2020, the lack of skilled labor is a crucial limiting factor, particularly when it comes to home construction. As it stands, sales have outpaced home construction, causing a severe backlog. Coupled with the supply-chain bottlenecks caused by COVID-19, the construction industry is in dire need of resources. This presents an exciting opportunity for new graduates. The construction industry is ready and waiting for you, with approximately 740,000 job openings to account for the current demand.
Compared to other careers that require similar levels of education, construction jobs are financially rewarding. Many construction jobs require no formal education, instead favoring industry experience. They can pay between $900 and $940 per week, which is well above the usual average for high school graduates.
Again, there’s an opportunity to specialize your skillset, which will help you to move into a new wage bracket over time. Some top-paying jobs include brick masons, plumbers, electricians, tapers, building inspectors, and boilermakers. If you work your way up the ranks into roles like first-line supervisor, you can boost your hourly rate to $55 or more.
3. You Can Start Small
In the construction business, experience is gold. You can start your career by pursuing an apprenticeship and spending time with skilled laborers. Better yet, it allows you to build a network of contacts in the industry, a fundamental element to continue learning and perfecting your skills.
4. Life-long Growth
In some industries, it’s easy to reach your ceiling. Construction doesn’t work like that. You can steadily climb the ladder, learning and working in various roles before you get to the top. And, once you get there, you’re a master of the trade who’s built up a steady reputation making it easy to land jobs. The construction industry offers continued growth and career evolution, creating an abundance of opportunity that doesn’t exist in other sectors.
5. Job Satisfaction
You’ll always be working on a new project in the construction industry. Yes, some may span over a few years, but you’ll consistently create something physical. In what other industry do you get to appreciate the results of your hard work in such a tangible way? You’ll walk past the buildings you’ve completed, feeling that sense of accomplishment and pride for the rest of your life. Not many jobs give you such satisfaction.
General Contractors In The U.S.
As you enter the construction world, it helps to identify the key players in the sector. Working for a top general contractor certainly has its advantages, and it’s worth prioritizing as a fresh graduate.
The best general contractors usually have access to some of the most exciting technologies, exposing you to software or platforms to which you may not have access in a smaller construction firm. Of course, top general contractors also work on large-scale projects, often enticing mega projects that will do wonders for your resumé. Instead of working on a home-building project, you get your hands dirty with a new football stadium.
In a larger construction company, it’s easier to move around, experimenting with other positions. You may not experience sideways growth in a smaller firm. Large general contractors offer job security and stability. They’re here to stay with projects lined up for extended periods. As a bonus, you’ll also have travel opportunities - a huge plus when you’re starting your career.
Construction Companies To Keep Your Eye On
Here are some of the best construction companies to consider if you are seeking a career in the industry.
Bechtel is one of the world’s most respected general contractor companies. They specialize in engineering, construction, and project management. Founded in 1898, they’ve completed more than 25 000 projects across every continent, including megaprojects like The Hoover Dam in 1931. Today, Bechtel boasts state-of-the-art facilities and project delivery worldwide.
2. Whiting-Turner Contracting
Whiting-Turner is one of the fastest-growing construction firms in the U.S. Their unwavering dedication to the finished product continues to build outstanding reputability. Whiting-Turner prides itself in keeping up with the latest trends, building systems, and construction methods. The construction company works on projects in sectors that range from hospitals and data centers to universities and lifestyle centers.
3. Turner Construction
Turner Construction was founded in 1902 in New York City. It offers an inclusive environment, prioritizing teamwork and developing connections between team members. They’ve committed to sustaining a diverse, equitable workplace where colleagues genuinely care for each other. Their mentorship programs offer continued development and growth while tackling ambitious construction projects like the Emirates Towers in Dubai and the WaveRock in India.
4. Fluor Corporation
Fluor tackles complex and challenging capital projects globally as an industry leader in engineering and construction. In 2021, they were ranked No. 5 on the Engineering News-Record list of Top 200 Environmental Firms. They take on mega projects in some of the most inhospitable places, facing every challenge head-on with industry-leading technology. Their builds include the North West Redwater Sturgeon Refinery and the Cerro Verde Production Unit Expansion.
5. STO Building Group
The STO Building Group is a family of 12 companies with over 4,000 employees located across the U.S, Canada, the U.K, and Ireland. They offer a complete range of services from site selection and analysis to design, new building construction, and infrastructure project upgrades. They focus on sustainable growth and approach every project with creativity, striving for excellence.
Start Working in Construction Today!
Looking for a job at a construction company as a fresh graduate offers unlimited growth opportunities. In an industry where experience is king, there are many ways to grow and advance all while earning a substantial paycheck as a construction professional. If you can get started at one of the top five general contractor firms in the U.S, you’ll be set for a bright career.