What is a construction craft worker?

Construction craft workers are vital in various trades, forming the backbone of construction sites. This article demystifies their role, exploring responsibilities, skills, and contributions to projects. Appreciate their expertise and crucial role in shaping the built environment.

What is a construction craft worker?

Construction craft workers handle a variety of specialized tasks on job sites. Keep reading to learn more about what they do and how the term “construction craft worker” is used throughout North America.

Construction craft labor definition

Construction craft labor includes tasks and trades such as:

  • preparing and cleaning job sites
  • masonry
  • working with materials like concrete and steel
  • site security
  • operating equipment
  • monitoring safety

This is just the tip of the iceberg, however. There are hundreds of trades associated with construction craft labor.

This wide range means workers classified under the umbrella are often trained in various disciplines. Many, however, specialize in just one.

In North America, the term “construction craft worker” also refers to apprenticeships like The Interprovincial Standards Red Seal Program. These educational programs teach participants the disciplines required to become craft laborers.

Construction craft labor job market statistics

Salary expectations for construction craft laborers vary wildly. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics pegs the entire category’s median salary at $36,000. However, craft workers such as masons earn upwards of $46,500 per year.

Concerningly, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics also reports that craft workers endure some of the economy’s highest injury rates. This is a testament to the grueling nature of their essential work.

What are a construction craft laborer’s educational requirements?

Construction craft workers generally hone their skills through apprenticeship programs, ranging from a few months to several years.

Subjects explored during these training programs include:

  • STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics)
  • communication
  • organization and management
  • hands-on training applicable to specific types of equipment and processes

Training environments range from classrooms to job sites.

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A closer look at construction craft workers

Next, let’s look at the roles construction craft workers fulfill on job sites.

Preparing and cleaning construction sites

Cleanliness promotes organization and safety on job sites. Craft laborers responsible for this service oversee tasks such as:

  • keeping passageways clear of debris
  • collecting and disposing of scrap material
  • securing and disposing of waste (including hazardous compounds)
  • keeping amenities like toilets accessible and clean

These tasks are essential for keeping a job site up to code before, during, and after a project.


Masons work with brick, stone, and adobe, arranging them into structures. In addition to high school diplomas, masons are typically required to complete apprenticeships.

Concrete and steel workers

These two roles should be pretty self-explanatory. They serve, quite literally, as the foundation of many large building projects. It’s not uncommon for workers – and even entire contracting businesses – to specialize in concrete or steel.


As discussed in this article, security is essential in any construction project manager’s arsenal. It keeps assets ranging from data to physical materials and construction equipment safe from vandals and thieves.

Equipment operators

Construction equipment can greatly improve job site efficiency. This type of construction craft laborer’s training often involves acquiring the certifications required to operate specific machinery legally.

Skills required to become a construction craft worker

As you can imagine, the hard skills required to be a successful construction craft laborer number in the hundreds and vary depending on the particular trade in question.

However, construction craft workers have many multidisciplinary skills, including the following.


Dexterity – the ability to use one’s hands – is essential in construction. People who lack this skill are often clumsy, which is a major liability on job sites, given the size and scale of objects being moved around.


Construction workers face many challenges daily. Whether related to conflicts between personnel or a project’s complexities, these issues must be solved – often sooner rather than later.

Professionals with excellent problem-solving skills typically thrive as construction project managers.


From invoicing to accurately measuring materials, many aspects of a construction craft laborer’s work involve math. Having a firm grasp of the necessary calculations comes in handy and is often intuitive.

Spatial awareness

Construction job sites are filled with people, equipment, and materials. Everyone present—including craft laborers—needs strong spatial awareness to avoid injuries and property damage, among other risks.

Physical endurance

Construction can be back-breaking work. Craft workers need stamina to thrive, especially considering they often work in extreme weather conditions.


Every construction project is a collaborative effort. Workforce management professionals do their best to keep everyone on the same page, but individual craft laborers also need team spirit.

The ability to follow instructions

Construction craft laborers don’t work in a vacuum. The finished product must meet certain standards and specifications even when clients trust their expertise. Workers incapable of following these instructions will have difficulty thriving as construction craft laborers.

Technological aptitude

Construction craft workers need good organizational skills to stay on top of tasks. Construction management software greatly assists in this regard but workers still need to be capable of learning these programs and integrating them into their workflow.

How Bridgit Bench helps construction craft workers

Bridgit Bench is the resource management software of choice for construction craft professionals. It helps companies effectively manage tasks such as the following.

Enable timely remote planning

Following COVID-19, remote planning has become a staple of construction management. Bridgit Bench keeps operational staff firing on all cylinders, whether in the office or working from home.

Workforce forecasting to match demand

Construction craft workers possess valuable human capital that must be managed and secured like any other resource. Bridgit Bench’s forecasting functionality helps specialty contractors plan for future workforce demands.

Maintain a project database

Craft laborers often work on numerous projects simultaneously. Bridgit Bench’s project database functionality helps companies manage their obligations.

Mobile application for info on the go

For craft laborers who are on the go, Bridgit Bench’s mobile application is handy. From anywhere worldwide, you can see your tasks and resource allocations.

Life before & after Bridgit Bench

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We hope this article has illuminated the work of construction craft workers. Learn more about how Bridgit Bench helps subcontractors.

To learn more about various aspects of construction management, visit our blog.

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Michel Richer

Michel Richer is the Manager of Content and Product Marketing at Bridgit. He started in the construction industry early on with a local restoration company. Michel is driven to propel the construction industry forward by helping to eliminate outdated, ineffective processes.

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