Summary Report for:
47-2031.01 - Construction Carpenters
Construct, erect, install, and repair structures and fixtures of wood, plywood, and wallboard, using carpenter's hand tools and power tools.
Sample of reported job titles: Assembler, Cabinet Maker, Carpenter Foreman, Carpentry Foreman, Concrete Carpenter, Construction Superintendent, Construction Worker, Foreman, Framer, Production Worker
Tasks | Tools & Technology | Knowledge | Skills | Abilities | Work Activities | Detailed Work Activities | Work Context | Job Zone | Education | Credentials | Interests | Work Styles | Work Values | Related Occupations | Wages & Employment | Job Openings | Additional Information
- Follow established safety rules and regulations and maintain a safe and clean environment.
- Study specifications in blueprints, sketches, or building plans to prepare project layout and determine dimensions and materials required.
- Measure and mark cutting lines on materials, using a ruler, pencil, chalk, and marking gauge.
- Shape or cut materials to specified measurements, using hand tools, machines, or power saws.
- Install structures or fixtures, such as windows, frames, floorings, trim, or hardware, using carpenters' hand or power tools.
- Verify trueness of structure, using plumb bob and level.
- Select and order lumber or other required materials.
- Arrange for subcontractors to deal with special areas, such as heating or electrical wiring work.
- Maintain records, document actions, and present written progress reports.
- Build or repair cabinets, doors, frameworks, floors, or other wooden fixtures used in buildings, using woodworking machines, carpenter's hand tools, or power tools.
- Erect scaffolding or ladders for assembling structures above ground level.
- Inspect ceiling or floor tile, wall coverings, siding, glass, or woodwork to detect broken or damaged structures.
- Assemble and fasten materials to make frameworks or props, using hand tools and wood screws, nails, dowel pins, or glue.
- Remove damaged or defective parts or sections of structures and repair or replace, using hand tools.
- Finish surfaces of woodwork or wallboard in houses or buildings, using paint, hand tools, or paneling.
- Apply shock-absorbing, sound-deadening, or decorative paneling to ceilings or walls.
- Cover subfloors with building paper to keep out moisture and lay hardwood, parquet, or wood-strip-block floors by nailing floors to subfloor or cementing them to mastic or asphalt base.
- Fill cracks or other defects in plaster or plasterboard and sand patch, using patching plaster, trowel, and sanding tool.
- Perform minor plumbing, welding, or concrete mixing work.
- Prepare cost estimates for clients or employers.
- Construct forms or chutes for pouring concrete.
- Work with or remove hazardous material.
Tools & Technology
Tools used in this occupation:
- Air compressors
- Alignment jig — Baluster jigs; Level jigs
- Bandsaw wheel — Bandsaws
- Belt sander — Belt sanders
- Bevels — Sliding t-bevels
- Biscuit jointers — Biscuit joiners; Joiners
- Caulking guns
- Cheesegrater file — Wood files
- Compasses — Pencil compasses
- Conventional truck cranes — Truck cranes
- Drilling machines — Drill presses
- Drum sander — Drum sanders
- Feeder jig — Push sticks
- Forklifts — Pettibones; Rough terrain forklifts
- Gas generators — Power generators
- Guide jig — Chain saw jigs; Mortise jigs
- Hammer drills — Rotary hammers
- Hammers — Framing hammers
- Hard hats
- Impact wrenches — Electric impact wrenches
- Jacks — Beam-lifting jacks; Screw jacks; Wall-lifting jacks
- Ladders — Extension ladders; Fold-up ladders; Non-conducting ladders
- Laser measuring systems — Laser measuring tools
- Level sensors or transmitters — Transit levels
- Levels — Calibrating electronic levels; Laser levels; Torpedo levels; Visible beam laser levels (see all 15 examples)
- Metal markers or holders — Marking gauges
- Moisture meters
- Needlenose pliers
- Notebook computers
- Personal computers
- Personal digital assistant PDAs or organizers — Personal digital assistants PDA
- Planes — Rabbet planes; Shapers
- Plumb bobs — Plumb lines
- Pneumatic nail drivers — Pneumatic nail guns
- Pocket calculator — Handheld calculators
- Power drills — Cordless drills
- Power grinders — Disc grinders
- Power planes — Electric planers
- Power routers — Plunge routers; Portable routers; Trim routers
- Power sanders — Handheld rotary tools; Random orbital sanders
- Power saws — Beam saws; Circular saws; Reciprocating saws; Worm-drive saws (see all 7 examples)
- Power staple guns — Brad tackers
- Pry bars — Mini pry bars
- Pullers — Cat's paws
- Safety boots — Work boots
- Safety harnesses or belts — Fall arrest systems
- Saw blades — Dado blades
- Saw guide — Saw guides
- Sawing machines — Compound miter saws; Miter saws
- Saws — Hand saws
- Scaffolding — Ladder jacks; Pump jacks
- Scaffolding stabilizers — Ladder levelers
- Screwdrivers — Multi-tip screwdrivers; Phillips head screwdrivers; Straight screwdrivers
- Sledge hammer — Sledgehammers
- Squares — Combination squares; Framing squares; Layout bars
- Staple guns — Hammer staplers
- Tape measures — Cross-curve tape measures; Measuring tapes; Story pole tape measures
- Tinners snips — Snips
- Triangles — Right triangles
- Utility knives
- Wood auger bit — Auger bits
- Wood chisels — Draw chisels; Morticers
Technology used in this occupation:
- Accounting software — Intuit QuickBooks software; Intuit Quicken software; Job costing software
- Computer aided design CAD software — Drawing and drafting software
- Information retrieval or search software — Renaissance MasterCarpenter
- Internet browser software — Web browser software
- Office suite software — Microsoft Office software
- Project management software — Bosch Punch List; Craftsman CD Estimator; Turtle Creek Software Goldenseal; VirtualBoss (see all 5 examples)
- Spreadsheet software — Microsoft Excel
- Web page creation and editing software
- Word processing software — Microsoft Word; Wilhelm Publishing Threshold
- Building and Construction — Knowledge of materials, methods, and the tools involved in the construction or repair of houses, buildings, or other structures such as highways and roads.
- Mathematics — Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
- English Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
- Mechanical — Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
- Design — Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
- Public Safety and Security — Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
- Administration and Management — Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
- Education and Training — Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
- Customer and Personal Service — Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
- Active Listening — Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
- Monitoring — Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
- Speaking — Talking to others to convey information effectively.
- Active Learning — Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
- Complex Problem Solving — Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
- Coordination — Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
- Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
- Judgment and Decision Making — Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
- Reading Comprehension — Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
- Time Management — Managing one's own time and the time of others.
- Manual Dexterity — The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
- Problem Sensitivity — The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
- Trunk Strength — The ability to use your abdominal and lower back muscles to support part of the body repeatedly or continuously over time without 'giving out' or fatiguing.
- Visualization — The ability to imagine how something will look after it is moved around or when its parts are moved or rearranged.
- Information Ordering — The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
- Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
- Arm-Hand Steadiness — The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.
- Deductive Reasoning — The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
- Multilimb Coordination — The ability to coordinate two or more limbs (for example, two arms, two legs, or one leg and one arm) while sitting, standing, or lying down. It does not involve performing the activities while the whole body is in motion.
- Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
- Oral Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
- Stamina — The ability to exert yourself physically over long periods of time without getting winded or out of breath.
- Static Strength — The ability to exert maximum muscle force to lift, push, pull, or carry objects.
- Category Flexibility — The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
- Depth Perception — The ability to judge which of several objects is closer or farther away from you, or to judge the distance between you and an object.
- Extent Flexibility — The ability to bend, stretch, twist, or reach with your body, arms, and/or legs.
- Far Vision — The ability to see details at a distance.
- Finger Dexterity — The ability to make precisely coordinated movements of the fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble very small objects.
- Inductive Reasoning — The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
- Speech Recognition — The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
- Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
- Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material — Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
- Performing General Physical Activities — Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.
- Handling and Moving Objects — Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.
- Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work — Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
- Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment — Running, maneuvering, navigating, or driving vehicles or mechanized equipment, such as forklifts, passenger vehicles, aircraft, or water craft.
- Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates — Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
- Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
- Coordinating the Work and Activities of Others — Getting members of a group to work together to accomplish tasks.
- Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings — Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
- Controlling Machines and Processes — Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).
- Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
- Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge — Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
- Estimating the Quantifiable Characteristics of Products, Events, or Information — Estimating sizes, distances, and quantities; or determining time, costs, resources, or materials needed to perform a work activity.
- Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards — Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
- Scheduling Work and Activities — Scheduling events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others.
- Guiding, Directing, and Motivating Subordinates — Providing guidance and direction to subordinates, including setting performance standards and monitoring performance.
- Drafting, Laying Out, and Specifying Technical Devices, Parts, and Equipment — Providing documentation, detailed instructions, drawings, or specifications to tell others about how devices, parts, equipment, or structures are to be fabricated, constructed, assembled, modified, maintained, or used.
- Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships — Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
- Communicating with Persons Outside Organization — Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.
- Developing and Building Teams — Encouraging and building mutual trust, respect, and cooperation among team members.
- Processing Information — Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
- Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People — Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.
- Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others — Handling complaints, settling disputes, and resolving grievances and conflicts, or otherwise negotiating with others.
- Developing Objectives and Strategies — Establishing long-range objectives and specifying the strategies and actions to achieve them.
- Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others — Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.
Detailed Work Activities
- Prepare operational reports.
- Inspect work sites to determine condition or necessary repairs.
- Measure materials or objects for installation or assembly.
- Mix substances or compounds needed for work activities.
- Mark reference points on construction materials.
- Review blueprints or specifications to determine work requirements.
- Apply decorative or textured finishes or coverings.
- Install carpet or flooring.
- Clean work sites.
- Remove worn, damaged or outdated materials from work areas.
- Assemble temporary equipment or structures.
- Prepare hazardous waste for processing or disposal.
- Weld metal components.
- Estimate construction project costs.
- Verify alignment of structures or equipment.
- Cut wood components for installation.
- Select construction materials.
- Install wooden structural components.
- Install building fixtures.
- Install doors or windows.
- Coordinate construction project activities.
- Apply material to fill gaps in surfaces.
- Order construction or extraction materials or equipment.
- Build construction forms or molds.
- Install trim or paneling.
- Face-to-Face Discussions — 86% responded “Every day.”
- Wear Common Protective or Safety Equipment such as Safety Shoes, Glasses, Gloves, Hearing Protection, Hard Hats, or Life Jackets — 81% responded “Every day.”
- Spend Time Standing — 68% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
- Work With Work Group or Team — 67% responded “Extremely important.”
- Frequency of Decision Making — 78% responded “Every day.”
- Telephone — 81% responded “Every day.”
- Exposed to Hazardous Equipment — 68% responded “Every day.”
- Coordinate or Lead Others — 56% responded “Extremely important.”
- Freedom to Make Decisions — 59% responded “A lot of freedom.”
- Contact With Others — 59% responded “Constant contact with others.”
- Spend Time Using Your Hands to Handle, Control, or Feel Objects, Tools, or Controls — 63% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
- Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — 61% responded “Very important.”
- Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results — 52% responded “Important results.”
- Outdoors, Exposed to Weather — 49% responded “Every day.”
- Physical Proximity — 58% responded “Moderately close (at arm's length).”
- Responsible for Others' Health and Safety — 49% responded “Very high responsibility.”
- Structured versus Unstructured Work — 51% responded “A lot of freedom.”
- Sounds, Noise Levels Are Distracting or Uncomfortable — 51% responded “Every day.”
- Responsibility for Outcomes and Results — 47% responded “High responsibility.”
- Spend Time Walking and Running — 39% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
- Exposed to Contaminants — 35% responded “Every day.”
- Time Pressure — 32% responded “Every day.”
- Very Hot or Cold Temperatures — 35% responded “Every day.”
- Spend Time Bending or Twisting the Body — 41% responded “More than half the time.”
- Indoors, Not Environmentally Controlled — 37% responded “Once a month or more but not every week.”
- Spend Time Making Repetitive Motions — 36% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
- Cramped Work Space, Awkward Positions — 42% responded “Once a month or more but not every week.”
- Outdoors, Under Cover — 30% responded “Every day.”
- Deal With External Customers — 35% responded “Extremely important.”
- Exposed to Minor Burns, Cuts, Bites, or Stings — 40% responded “Once a year or more but not every month.”
- In an Enclosed Vehicle or Equipment — 48% responded “Every day.”
- Duration of Typical Work Week — 63% responded “40 hours.”
- Exposed to High Places — 44% responded “Once a month or more but not every week.”
- Extremely Bright or Inadequate Lighting — 38% responded “Once a month or more but not every week.”
- In an Open Vehicle or Equipment — 33% responded “Once a year or more but not every month.”
- Level of Competition — 58% responded “Moderately competitive.”
- Spend Time Kneeling, Crouching, Stooping, or Crawling — 53% responded “About half the time.”
- Frequency of Conflict Situations — 27% responded “Once a month or more but not every week.”
|Title||Job Zone Two: Some Preparation Needed|
|Education||These occupations usually require a high school diploma.|
|Related Experience||Some previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is usually needed. For example, a teller would benefit from experience working directly with the public.|
|Job Training||Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.|
|Job Zone Examples||These occupations often involve using your knowledge and skills to help others. Examples include sheet metal workers, forest fire fighters, customer service representatives, physical therapist aides, salespersons (retail), and tellers.|
|SVP Range||(4.0 to < 6.0)|
Percentage of Respondents
|Education Level Required|
|54||High school diploma or equivalent|
|18||Less than high school diploma|
Interest code: RCI
- Realistic — Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
- Conventional — Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
- Investigative — Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
- Attention to Detail — Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
- Dependability — Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
- Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical.
- Cooperation — Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
- Self Control — Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
- Independence — Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
- Adaptability/Flexibility — Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
- Concern for Others — Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
- Leadership — Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction.
- Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
- Stress Tolerance — Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
- Innovation — Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.
- Analytical Thinking — Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
- Persistence — Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
- Achievement/Effort — Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
- Social Orientation — Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job.
- Support — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical.
- Independence — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
- Achievement — Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
Wages & Employment Trends
Median wages data collected from Carpenters.
Employment data collected from Carpenters.
Industry data collected from Carpenters.
|Median wages (2014)||$19.63 hourly, $40,820 annual|
|Employment (2012)||901,000 employees|
|Projected growth (2012-2022)||Much faster than average (22% or higher)|
|Projected job openings (2012-2022)||329,200|
|Top industries (2012)|
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2014 wage data and 2012-2022 employment projections . "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2012-2022). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.
Job Openings on the Web
Sources of Additional Information
Disclaimer: Sources are listed to provide additional information on related jobs, specialties, and/or industries. Links to non-DOL Internet sites are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement.
- Carpenters . Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor. Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition.
- Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) , 2300 Wilson Blvd., Suite 400, Arlington, VA 22201. Phone: (703) 548-3118. Fax: (703) 548-3119.
- Home Builders Institute (HBI) , 1201 15th St. NW, Sixth Floor, Washington, DC 20005. Phone: (800) 795-7955. Fax: (202) 266-8999.
- National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) , 1201 15th St. NW, Washington, DC 20005. Phone: (800) 368-5242.
- United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America (UBC) , 50 F St. NW, Washington, DC 20001.