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What is a typical day in your daily life at work?

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Morgan W.’s Answer

Hi! Echoing Kiirsten's answer, each job is different but they can be similar in many ways, too. A good place to start is first, searching for jobs in the specific industry of your choice, and doing some "googling" on what the job entails. Many times, you'll find job descriptions on job sites like LinkedIn and Indeed that will give you the rundown of what the job entails and what you can expect. From there, you can search for people who've done similar jobs (you can also do this on LinkedIn) and try reaching out to them to ask about their job specifically.

The main thing to keep in mind when you're learning about work-life, new industries, or how to navigate your job search, is that it might take a few tries to find the right person to answer your questions, but persistence is key and it will pay off. Keep up the hard work!

Hi Morgan, this student is interested in construction. Do you have any recommendations on sites that would provide information on that field? Gurpreet Lally

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Nate’s Answer

Hi William,

The different titles within construction are going to result in a lot of different answers regarding a daily schedule. Not only are there vastly different roles on a job but the specific industry of construction (Residential, Commercial, Industrial, Energy) and size of company will impact different job title responsibilities significantly. A smaller company working in the residential scope will probably have significantly more overlap in responsibilities when compared to a large corporate commercial builder.

I usually group Project Engineers and Superintendents together as on-site roles and Project Managers and Project Executives as off-site roles, although frequently they will all be on-site.

For an on-site roll the daily outlook might include a opening the job,sync meeting, inspections and crew management, specifications review, material acquisition, subcontractor management, inputting schedule progress, and closing the job at the end of the day. Off-site rolls are going to include sync meetings, budget review, contract management, schedule updates and creation, and meetings with the client on a periodic basis. These rolls may also be responsible for walking the job-site with the client on a monthly basis during pay application submittals to confirm progress with the client to verify reported schedule progress has actually been attained. Obviously both the on-site and off-site personnel interact considerably for a lot of these items and will work together when issues arise on the job that may result in additional architectural or engineering requirements or for items that are going to result in a change order that will need issued to the client for approval.

Aside from these position there's a lot of background going on in the construction world that people don't see or think about such as punch list teams that specifically come in at the end of the project to complete commissioning, touch-up on any existing issues with the project, building hand-ff and possibly complete Tenant Improvement for a client which might include installation of cubicles or other specific items requested by the client. There's also a pre-construction team that will manage the interaction with architects and engineers during the design phase of the project, permit acquisition and management via the local government (City or County), acquisition of land, feasibility assessments for possible future projects, and so on.

Everyday is going to be different and no project in construction is the same, even if your company focuses specifically on building developments with the same specifications for almost every house. There will always be change orders, different municipalities, and different elevations on a job that will mix things up. No matter what, expect long, rewarding days.

I hope this helps!

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Darlene’s Answer

It really depends on the company you work for and what the needs are.
As a union carpenter, I spend most of my day building things. I do many things from wood and metal framing to finish work such as trim work and installing cabinets and countertops. The great thing about being union is good pay and benefits that travel with you from company to company.
It is heavy work and you can't be afraid to get your hands dirty, but it is really cool building stuff and you get a great sense of pride from what you do.
You do have to have tough skin for any job in the construction industry. I have seen the culture lighten up slightly over the years, especially with more harassment laws in place, but it can still be harsh. The trick is learning how to handle it and not take it personally. If you can do that, you will find a lot of satisfaction in working with your hands.

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Kiirsten’s Answer

Hello William!

I see you used the hashtag "construction" and although I am not in the construction field, I feel that every job is relatable to each other. Typically people get up, head to their jobs, work on projects or tasks for the day, and then head home. One of the most important things you can do with any job is to be professional, value-adding, and kind to others. Make sure you stay on top of deadlines (whether it's to create a report by Friday, or install doors in a new construction home by Monday), your work is a reflection of you.

Thank you so much for your response, will take into consideration your advice as an entry level William A.