Catherine Storer, Executive Director at ESS, says you don't need to go to university to get big money landing in your pocket. She says industries such as construction can give you a high wage, without sitting behind a desk.
The expert explained: “We know that a good pay check doesn’t have to mean a degree hanging on the wall. In fact, the construction field is full of opportunities and our aim is to give people the training and tools they need to land jobs that put real money in their pockets.
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“Construction has strict industry standards and legislation that can put people off. Through our courses, we make this information more accessible and set people up for a full and successful construction career.”
Below, Catherine has shared five roles which can land you that money in your bank before you know it.
1. Equipment Operator
“Specialised Equipment Operators are often in high demand and low supply,” Catherine explains. “This means they can leverage their skills for salaries that often exceed the £40,000 mark.
Catherine says these roles are all about precision, safety awareness, and technical knowledge of machinery and says all of this can be gained through vocational training and certification programmes - so there's no need for a four-year stint at university.
Catherine explains the lack of knowledge about these opportunities is, in part, due to the misconceptions of working in construction. “It can be easy for people to have the misconception that construction jobs are low paying - this is simply not the case," she says. "For example, a bricklayer with a CSCS card can earn up to £42,000 per year."
3. General Labourer
“While specific trade qualifications can help you specialise and earn more, that’s not the only way to a healthy paycheck," says Catherine. She says general labourers with a CSCS card have a clear path to earning more money. Salaries for this role often start at roughly £25,000 and climb to around £35,000.
Catherine says it can be easy to forget that construction is an entire industry, with fully fledged career paths. She says: "If progression is what you’re looking for, there are a host of options available. Going down the route of a Construction Manager could leave you earning between £40,000 and £70,000 per year."
Catherine says this role requires a keen eye for detail, strong leadership skills, and the ability to deliver projects on time and within budget. "With the right mix of on-site experience and industry certifications, a degree isn't needed to climb the ladder to this high-paying position," she adds.
Site Supervisors also play a pivotal role in construction, overseeing daily operations while making sure all work is carried out safely and effectively, says the expert. She says: "In the UK, the average salary for this role can reach up to £38,000. Plus, if management is your go-to, it’s a great stepping stone for those higher positions.”
Concluding her message, Catherine adds: “In construction, it’s your skills that pay the bills - you don’t need a degree to earn a solid wage. So often, it is thought of as just bricks and mortar, but it’s actually a viable career path. Whether you’re just starting out or looking to switch careers, there’s a spot in construction for you."