How to Get a Job with a Roofing Contractor
Finding a clear path into any job can be a minefield, especially for the inexperienced. There are thousands of jobs out there for skilled labourers, but how exactly do you go about finding them?
In this article, we’re looking at how you might obtain a roofing job with a roofing contractor, along with the skills, qualifications and experience you will need.
What does a roofer do?
Professional roofers enjoy a varied day-to-day job which involves working on a range of domestic and commercial roofing projects. Roofers will often work alongside other tradespeople, such as construction workers, plumbers and electricians. Each project will have specific demands.
Typical tasks for a roofer include:
- Stripping existing roof tiles, slate and cladding
- Calculating the amount of materials needed
- Cutting materials
- Laying/installing materials
- Surveying the condition of a roof structure
- Making necessary repairs to the structure
Skills and qualifications
Many contractors will be on the lookout for experienced roofers – typically 3 years. Roofing labourer work, including temporary jobs, provide invaluable in-field experience though, and may help you to make contacts in the industry. You can also earn experience with a training course.
You may be able to enter the industry through an apprenticeship, however these positions are generally very competitive.
Most reputable contractors will require employees to carry a valid Construction Skills Certificate Scheme (CSCS) card before allowing you to work on site.
To get started, a roofer will need a few different skills to contribute effectively on any given project. A roofer should:
- Be able to read roofing/building plans
- Be skilled in maths and calculations
- Have a decent level of physical fitness
- Be aware of health and safety regulations and requirements
- Be comfortable working at heights
- Be able to function well in a team
- Have good communication skills
Working for a roofing contractor involves constant movement, carrying heavy equipment and climbing up and down ladders, sometimes in extreme weather conditions. On site training will provide the bulk of in-field experience, but any potential roofer will need to understand what will be required of them and be willing and able to perform their duties to a reliable standard.
Some contractors may require you to drive to and from site, so a full driving license may be listed as a requirement when applying.
Working as a roofer
The more experience you obtain as a roofer, the wider range of projects you will be able to handle. Many contractors are specialist contractors, working with one particular material or type of roof, for instance. As you train and develop, you may be able to travel further down specialist routes, focusing on certain aspects of roofing work over others. This will help you find work with more specialised contractors and will inform your knowledge and understanding of the industry.
Many contractors provide roofing services for both commercial and domestic roofs. Major projects might involve working on historical buildings or large scale developments. Naturally, these jobs will involve larger teams and more collaboration than smaller projects.
A roofing contractor takes on many different projects. As a roofer, it will be up to you to adapt to each. Experience is always the most valuable aspect of the job and much of this will be learned as you take on more projects and more responsibility. Finding a job with a contractor may be easier in the spring or summer, when more hands are needed on site.
As your skills develop and you begin to learn specialist techniques, there are clear levels of progression to aim for. Future positions might include working as a supervisor, site manager, contracts manager and various other on and off site positions.
JTC Roofing provide specialist metal roofing solutions to commercial and domestic clients throughout the UK. Whether it’s lead, zinc, copper or stainless steel, we can perform high quality metal roof installations for any size and scale of roof. To find out more about the work we do, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us today.