What is the construction iNdustry, Really?

The construction industry is what houses our economy. The home you live in, the roads you drive on, many of the things we all take for granted are the result of a booming and growing construction industry. While it's projected to be one of the country's fastest growing sectors by 2020, there is a severe skilled labor shortage that could hold back its potential. 

The industry itself is diverse, especially when it comes to career paths, including positions like like facilities managers, site engineers, civil engineers, consultants, surveyors, electricians, ironworkers, riggers, boilermakers, pipe fitters, and carpenters. With positions ranging from those that require a degree to entry-level jobs with a clear career path and upward mobility, this is an industry with vast opportunity for you.


The military provides incredible training to advance your teamwork, problem-solving skills (particularly when those skills are needed under pressure), and even industry-equivalent hard skills for military occupations. For example, you can see construction-related Army occupations here, or Marines in the OccFld 1300 have directly translatable skills. However, even those with direct training might need additional training for high skill trades in the civilian sector.

The construction industry was one of the first and remains one of the best industries for skills gap training through apprenticeship programs. Apprenticeship is a unique, flexible training system that combines job related technical instruction with structured on-the-job learning experiences. 

Registered Apprenticeships are programs approved by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) and is a paid job that focuses on training candidates to become experts in their field. On-the-job focused training allows the best candidates to become masters of their crafts in a wide variety of careers across the country. Employers and job seekers benefit from apprenticeship because it is considered the “gold standard” for talent development. Just a couple examples of construction apprenticeships include Helmets to Hardhats and Adaptive Construction Solutions

Employers are ready to help you translate your unique skills to a career and help you find the best transition resources available. 


Featured Careers in the Construction Industry

Scroll below to learn more about just a few of the most in-demand career paths that the construction industry provides to veterans, members of the Guard and Reserve, transitioning service members and military families.



$30,998 to $82,631 annually

Bricklayers work on construction sites as part of a team of bricklayers and stonemasons (or brickmasons) as they work collaboratively or independently on a variety of structures, including floors, walls, chimneys and partitions out of brick, concrete block and other masonry materials. This is a profession that calls many entrepreneurs, as nearly a third of the bricklayers in the United States are self-employed  Wages vary significantly based on experience and geography; however, many use apprenticeships to set them up for success because they gain a national credential and credibility. 






$36,968 to $49,661 annually

Carpenters work from drawings or verbal instructions and operates a variety of carpentry hand and power tools or equipment. Remodels, repairs, installs, refinishes and alters a variety of building structures such as walls, partitions, doorways, window frames, stairways and roofs Installs ceramic and other types of tile. Performs all work in accordance with established safety procedures. Estimates time and material costs on carpentry projects and requisitions new carpentry materials and equipment.



$40,957 to $49,904 annually

Ironworkers fabricate and implement the structural framework of pre-engineered metal buildings in a safe and time-sensitive manner. Like carpenters, they also work from drawings like blueprints or verbal instructions to correctly weld and cut steel. They are highly-skilled tradesmen and tradeswomen with a specialized skillset. To attain those skills, many complete an apprenticeship program.


Civil Engineer I

$57,688 to $70,363 annually

Plans, designs and manages construction projects. Job Duties: Undertakes technical and feasibility studies. Collaborates with other professionals and discusses requirements with clients. Uses computer programs to develop detailed designs. Ensures that constructions meet legal guidelines and safety and environment requirements.


Facilities Manager 

$80,534 to $117,414 annually

Manages the facility duties of an organization. Assists with overseeing the maintenance of a facility and its equipment. Supervises the design of machinery and equipment. Ensures cost-effective, efficient utilization of space, manpower, and equipment. Leads and directs the work of other employees. Requires leadership skills, judgement, creativity, and comprehensive knowledge of the field. Typically reports to a department head.