1. Home: Explore careers
  2. Construction labourer

Construction labourer

Alternative titles for this job include Construction operative, groundworker

Construction labourers work on practical tasks on construction sites from the start to the end of building projects.

Average salary (a year)

£17,000 Starter


£32,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

42 to 44 a week

You could work

evenings / weekends away from home

How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become Construction labourer

You can get into this job through:

  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • applying directly


You could start by taking a college course like:

  • Level 1 Certificate in Construction Skills
  • Level 2 Certificate in Construction Operations

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

More Information


Intermediate apprenticeships relevant to this role include:

  • groundworker
  • road surfacing operative 
  • piling attendant

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • some GCSEs, usually including English and maths, or equivalent, for an intermediate apprenticeship

More Information

Direct Application

You can apply directly for jobs. There are no set requirements but it may help if you have:

  • construction site experience
  • knowledge of building materials
  • worked at a builder's merchants or yard

More Information


Further information

You can find out more about working in construction from:

What it takes

Find out what skills you’ll use in this role.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • knowledge of building and construction
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • the ability to use, repair and maintain machines and tools
  • the ability to work well with your hands
  • the ability to work well with others
  • physical skills like movement, coordination, dexterity and grace
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • physical fitness and endurance
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device

Restrictions and Requirements

You'll need to:

  • have a good level of fitness

Some jobs involve using plant machinery, like excavators or dumper trucks. To do this, you'll need to be 18 or over and have a driving licence.

What you’ll do

Discover the day to day tasks you’ll do in this role.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

Your exact duties will depend on your area of work, for example you might:

  • do groundwork like marking out and digging trenches for foundations and drains
  • put up formwork panels to hold concrete in place as it sets
  • bend and fix bars to reinforce concrete structures
  • join steel sheets to form retaining walls for excavations - steel piling
  • lay concrete for foundations, floors and beams
  • set up roadworks, resurface highways and lay kerbs and paving 
  • keep tradespeople on site supplied with materials, like bricks, mortar and timber

Working environment

You could work on a construction site.

Your working environment may be at height and outdoors in all weathers.

You may need to wear protective clothing.

Career path and progression

Look at progression in this role and similar opportunities.

Career path and progression

You could train on the job to be a qualified tradesperson or plant operator. You could also work in demolition.

With experience, you could become a site supervisor.

Current opportunities

Find apprenticeships, courses and jobs available near you.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

Apprentice Groundworker

  • Wage: £16,640 a year Annually
  • Location: Bluebridge Industrial Estate, Halstead

Groundworker Apprentice

  • Wage: £13,300 a year Annually

Courses In England

Construction Skills (Construction Operations) L1 Certificate

  • Start date: 05 September 2024
  • Location: Minehead

Diploma in Construction Multi-Skills - Maintenance Operations - Level 2

  • Provider: NCG
  • Start date: 02 September 2024
  • Location: Kidderminster

Jobs In the United Kingdom

The Find a job service can help you with your search for jobs and send alerts when new jobs become available.

Skills assessment

Take an assessment to learn more about your skills and the careers that might suit you.

Is this page useful?

Yes No

Thank you for your feedback.

Thank you for your feedback. Click here if you'd like to let us know how we can improve the service.