Trades - Carpentry School Leaver Jobs - Careers Guide

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Carpenters and joiners work with wood to build beautiful pieces of furniture, vital fittings on building sites and joists and components of all sorts of structures. This is the perfect industry from someone with creative design skills but also an eye for the functional.Carpentry

You will use traditional woodworking tools as well as specialised power tools to cut, shape, smooth and finish woodwork.

What’s it all about?TOP ^

Carpenters and joiners are skilled, in demand members of the construction industry. There are typically four types of carpenter:

  • Bench joiners
  • Site carpenters
  • Shopfitters
  • Formwork carpenters

Where you opt to work depends on your specific skills. Carpenters are used to working in all environments, whether indoors or outdoors, on site or privately. You can supplement your school leaver experience with professional qualifications.

What will I earn? TOP ^

Newly qualified carpenters can earn around £15,000 a year, but this can rise quickly with experience to around £25,000.
Highly experienced carpenters and joiners can easily earn over £40,000.  

Where can I work? TOP ^

There are a variety of apprenticeships available in the carpentry industry - check them out at www.apprenticeships.org.uk. However, many employers will be happy to take you on straight from school and train you up.

Carpenters are generally self-employed, so it might benefit you to start out as an apprentice or trainee with a local carpenter.
You should also be able to find shift work through recruitment agencies. You will often be employed on a job by job basis. You should also be aware that onsite carpentry work is easier to find during the summer months.

What skills will I need in as a carpenter? TOP ^

Carpentry and joinery is a skilled occupation that will require you to have excellent design, creative, planning skills, as well as attention to detail. You should continue to grow your skills throughout your employment by taking professional qualifications.
As you will often work on your own, you will need excellent self-motivation and leadership skills too.

Some skills you’ll need to work in carpentry and joinery include:

What entry level jobs can I do in carpentry? TOP ^

School leavers can straight into the carpentry industry from school, without qualifications. To progress and gain higher wages, you will need to get professional qualifications. Consider an apprenticeship with a local craftsman.

Some entry level building jobs include:

  • Carpenter
  • Joiner
  • Shopfitter
  • Formwork carpenter
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