Construction and building technology

Architectural Stonemasonry

 

An architectural stonemason generally works in the commercial sector, cutting to shape all natural stones (granite, limestone, sandstone and marble) by hand or with Computer Numerically Controlled (CNC) machines.

The architectural stonemason works on heritage sites and in workshops. The work will range from basic places of worship to massive Gothic cathedrals, from simple but significant buildings to the grand architectural and secular commercial and municipal buildings that define a country’s heritage. He or she will produce stonemasonry components, and undertake letter cutting and carving. Work organization and self-management, communication and interpersonal skills, problem solving, innovation and creativity, working safely and accurately are the universal attributes of the outstanding architectural stonemason.

Restoring, conserving, renovating and maintaining cultural and architectural heritage is highly valued for structures that are locally, regionally, nationally and internationally significant.

 

 

Bricklaying

 

A bricklayer generally works on commercial and residential projects. Bricklaying is closely associated with other parts of the construction industry, and with the many products that support it, normally for commercial purposes. The bricklayer works internally and externally, including the homes of customers and on building sites, in all weather conditions on small and major projects. He or she will interpret drawings, set out and measure, construct and finish to a high standard. Work organization and self-management, communication and interpersonal skills, problem solving, innovation and creativity, working accurately are the universal attributes of the outstanding bricklayer.

Whether the bricklayer is working alone or in a team the individual takes on a high level of personal responsibility and autonomy. From working safely and tidily with resilience and endurance through to exceptional planning and scheduling, concentration, precision, accuracy and attention to detail to achieve an excellent finish every step in the process matters and mistakes are largely irreversible and very costly. With the international mobility of people the bricklayer faces rapidly expanding opportunities and challenges.

For the talented bricklayer there are many commercial and international opportunities; however these carry with them the need to understand and work with diverse cultures and trends

 

Cabinetmaking

 

Cabinetmaking covers the manufacture of free-standing and built-in furniture and units, using wood at the sole or main material. It may include the design of furniture, but normally comprises the creation of furniture and units from designs prepared by others. Cabinetmaking differs from joinery through the quality of the wood and associated materials used, and the intricacy and aesthetic quality of the finished items. There is, however, some overlap between cabinetmaking and joinery.

The cabinetmaker will produce furniture and fittings in a workshop, at least until installing fitted items. However, in order to meet clients’ needs, including for the items to add to the aesthetic qualities of their environment they will be placed in, he or she will know intimately where bespoke items are intended to be placed. For items produced speculatively rather than for known clients, the cabinetmaker will have a clear view of the types of location and setting that will show the items at their best. The cabinetmaker will produce, interpret and/or adapt drawings, set out and measure, cut, form joints, assemble, install if need be, and finish to a high standard.

 

 

Electrical Installations

 

An electrician works on commercial, residential, agricultural and industrial projects. There is a direct relationship between the nature and quality of the product required and the payment made by the customer. Therefore the electrician has a continuing responsibility to work professionally in order to meet the requirements of the customer and thus maintain and grow the business.

Electrical installation is closely associated with other parts of the construction industry, and with the many products that support it, normally for commercial purposes. The electrician works internally, including the homes of customers and on small and major projects. He or she will plan and design, select and install, commission, test, report, maintain, fault find and repair systems to a high standard. Work organization and self-management, communication and interpersonal skills, problem solving, flexibility and a deep body of knowledge are the universal attributes of the outstanding electrician.

Whether the electrician is working alone or in a team the individual takes on a high level of personal responsibility and autonomy. From working to provide a safe and reliable electrical installation and maintenance service, in accordance with relevant standards, through to diagnosing malfunctions, programming and commissioning home and building automation systems, concentration, precision, accuracy and attention to detail every step in the process matters and mistakes are largely irreversible, costly and potentially life threatening.

 

 

Floor Laying

 

Floor layers lay a wide range of floors for the interior of buildings. The range includes parquet flooring, resilient flooring such as linoleum, vinyl, cork or rubber, carpet and laminate flooring, panels and textile flooring such as woven or tufted floorings or needlepunch. They draw laying plans, prepare the underfloor, lay screeds and dry underfloors, and apply insulating layers

In addition to laying new floors, the Floor Layer is likely to make repairs to existing screed underfloors and surface coverings. They will also be called upon to advice on purpose, price, colour, limitations, care and maintenance.

To lay the floor, Floor Layers prepare the floor with a screed made from a screed mixture of sand, cement, water and additives. These screeds may either be immediately walked on or act as an underfloor for other types of floor covering. Floor Layers then lay the surface covering for the intended use. Floor Layers may be employed by organizations of any size, or be self-employed. Often depending on company type and size, and the client base, the role may be specialized or broad. For larger work assignments Floor Layers will work in teams of two or more.

As part of the broad construction sector the Floor Layer can expect to remain in demand. However, products, materials and work processes will change as a result of consumer choice, fashion, new technologies and new regulations.

 

Joinery

 

A joiner generally works on commercial and residential projects. There is a direct relationship between the nature and quality of the product required and the payment made by the customer. Therefore the joiner has a continuing responsibility to work professionally in order to meet the requirements of the customer and thus maintain and grow the business.

Joinery is closely associated with cabinet making and carpentry plus other parts of the construction industry and with the many products that support it, normally for commercial purposes. The joiner is usually based in a workshop because the formation of various joints requires specialist machinery, but sometimes undertakes installations in the homes of customers and on building sites. He or she will produce and interpret drawings, set out and measure, cut, form joints, assemble, install and finish to a high standard.

The joiner usually produces items such as interior and exterior doors, windows, stairs, tables and bookshelves. Work organization and self-management, communication and interpersonal skills, problem solving, innovation and creativity, working precisely and accurately are the universal attributes of the outstanding joiner.

 

Landscape Gardening

 

The key role for a landscape gardener is to design, install and maintain gardens and landscaped areas. The landscape gardener will need to meet with clients to discuss their proposed projects, provide advice and guidance on the practicalities of the project and carefully interpret the client's wishes. Projects can be varied and incorporate private and public gardens, parks, public open spaces, sports and recreation venues, playgrounds and other landscaped areas.

The landscape gardener must be able to develop innovative schemes that meet the needs of clients and comply with planning regulations, while retaining a vision of how the finished project will fit into the overall area and how garden spaces interact with urban environments. The landscape gardener may be involved at all stages of a project from the initial consultation and design, throughout the installation process, project managing and supervising the installation team, to providing advice and guidance on on-going maintenance and development as the garden grows and matures.

A detailed knowledge of both hard and soft landscaping is required, including knowledge of plants and trees in order to produce and implement a balanced plan that takes account of the area’s advantages and limitations relating to soil type and structure, geography, climatic conditions and planned use. Knowledge and skills relating to hard landscaping and construction are also essential. Related skills such as electrical installation, plumbing and irrigation systems are also needed to produce an overall project that is sustainable and has longevity.

A wide range of natural stones and materials will be used by the landscape gardener. They must therefore be aware of the impact of such materials on the environment, both in terms of sustainability of limited natural resources and also the impact of landscaping a natural environment and its wildlife.

 

Metal Roofing

 

Metal roofers produce sheet metal parts for roofs and façades of buildings and assemble them. These include drainpipes, windowsills, as well as balcony, façade and roof claddings. Following the specifications of architects and building contractors, they produce construction units of sheet metal e.g. by bending, seaming, cutting and soldering and turn prefabricated sheet metal parts into the appropriate shape. They also produce sheet metal cladding for insulated pipes and containers and install ventilation and air-conditioning systems, solar panels, snow guard and bird control systems, as well as lightning protection systems.

When the details of the structure have been determined, metal roofers produce the required construction units in their workshop. They cut and punch sheet metals, shape them by bending, creasing and compressing them, join them by compressing and welding them, thereby bringing the parts into the desired shape. Where they need several copies of certain workpieces, metal roofers produce stencils that enable them to produce identical forms. They examine the finished construction units and treat the surfaces, e.g. by applying anti-corrosion agents..

Many preparatory activities need to be carried out before metal roofers are able to assemble the parts they have prepared in the workshop on or in the building. After transporting the finished parts to the construction site, work and safety scaffolding needs to be set up, personal fall protection systems installed on buildings and wire ropes and winches set up.

 

Painting and Decorating

 

A painter and decorator works in the commercial and public sectors and is responsible for the external and internal appearance of a building and its protection from water, rust, mould and insects. The painter and decorator works internally and externally in very diverse environments, for example in companies, factories, schools, hotels, the homes of clients and on building sites in all weather conditions. He or she may offer a range of services, including interpreting client requirements/drawings, advising on designs/colours, painting, spraying, decorative coatings, wallpapering, gilding and sign writing to a high standard.

Work organization and self-management, communication and interpersonal skills, problem solving, innovation, creativity, and the ability to prepare surfaces thoroughly with meticulous care and work accurately are the universal attributes of the outstanding painter and decorator. In a mobile labour market, the painter and decorator may work in teams, or alone, or in both from time to time. Whatever the structure of the work, the trained and experienced painter and decorator takes on a high level of personal responsibility and autonomy. From carefully determining the requirements of the client, working safely and tidily, exceptional planning and scheduling, precision and attention to detail to the fine gilding of objects and finishing of furniture, every process matters and mistakes are largely irreversible and costly.

 

Plastering and Dry Wall Systems

 

The skilled plasterer may work on both internal and external plastering and rendering work. Much modern internal work is completed using drywall systems which involve the plasterer creating metal frames and installing plasterboard before the application on the final surface. These constructions can be complex and include curves and openings for doors and windows.

Traditional plastering involves the preparation of the background prior to application of the plaster surface. The plasterer will prepare materials for use and be fully aware of legislation and official guidance relating to the preparation and use of materials. In addition to plastering flat surfaces, the skilled plasterer will create and install decorative mouldings. Plasterers will also be required to make repairs.

The plasterer may work on large construction sites for domestic, commercial or industrial use, in single domestic and commercial premises or on historic buildings and heritage sites..

A range of materials can be used depending on the site and the planned use of the finished building. Some materials can be harmful, so care must always be taken by the plasterer to prevent injury or damage in use or disposal of waste. Plasterers often form part of a team, working efficiently and effectively with other skilled craftsmen in a logical and well planned manner.

 

Plumbing and Heating

 

A plumbing and heating technician works on commercial, residential, agricultural and industrial projects.

Plumbing and heating is closely associated with other parts of the construction industry, and with the many products that support it, normally for commercial purposes. The plumbing and heating technician works internally, including the homes of customers and on small and major projects. He or she will plan and design, select and install, commission, test, report, maintain, fault find and repair systems to a high standard. Whether the plumbing and heating technician is working alone or in a team the individual takes on a high level of personal responsibility and autonomy. From working to provide a safe and reliable plumbing and heating service, in accordance with relevant standards, through to diagnosing malfunctions, programming and commissioning home and building automation systems, concentration, precision, accuracy and attention to detail every step in the process matters and mistakes are largely irreversible, costly and potentially life threatening.

 

 

Refrigeration and Air Conditioning

 

A refrigeration and air conditioning engineer works on commercial, residential, public and industrial projects, including transportation and storage. There is a direct relationship between the nature and quality of the product and service required and the resulting cost and price; therefore this branch of engineering covers a wide range of products and services. It is also essential for the refrigeration and air conditioning engineer to meet high and growing standards of service in order to comply with the requirements of the customer and maintain and grow the business.

Refrigeration and air conditioning is closely associated with other parts of the construction and transportation industries at all stages, and is equally affected by rapid change in these sectors, including growing environmental trends and requirements. The refrigeration and air conditioning engineer generally works inside domestic, commercial or public buildings during and after construction and production, and on projects of all sizes and types.

He or she will plan and design, install, test, commission, report, maintain, fault find and repair systems to a high standard. From ensuring a safe and reliable installation and maintenance service, in accordance with relevant standards, through to diagnosing malfunctions, upgrading and commissioning, and fault finding and correction, the skills of concentration, precision, accuracy and attention to detail at every step in the process are crucial.

 

 

Wall and Floor Tiling

 

A tiler generally works on commercial and residential projects

Tiling is closely associated with other parts of the construction industry, and with the many products that support it, normally for commercial purposes. The tiler works internally and externally, including in the homes of customers and on building sites, in all weather conditions and on small and major projects. The work includes the laying of tiles of ceramics, mosaic and natural stone on walls, floors and staircases in houses, commercial, industrial and public buildings, churches, swimming pools, outside installations and façades to provide protective and decorative finishes. It also includes the construction of small walls and steps from bricks or blocks.

The tiler will interpret drawings, set out and measure, remove any existing covering, prepare surfaces, lay the tiles in the desired pattern, grout and finish to a high standard. Experienced tilers may also specialize in one area of work such as mosaics and they can work for specialist tiling firms specializing for example in artistic work or competition swimming pools.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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