How to Become a Construction Manager in Australia


Wondering how to become a construction manager in Australia?

To work in construction management, you need a solid combination of education and experience. To help wrap your head around the steps involved, let’s look at what a construction manager does, how to begin your journey, what roles you can pursue, and how much you can expect to earn.

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What do construction managers do?

Construction managers play a crucial role in the building and construction industry. Put simply, you’ll be responsible for managing construction projects from the start to finish. This involves overseeing the construction process of building projects, ensuring that they are completed on time, within budget, and to a high standard of quality.

Before you learn how to become a construction manager, it’s important to understand the position.  To break it down, here are some of the common duties:

  • Setting calendars
  • Coordinating workflow
  • Reading blueprints.
  • Supervising and advising staff
  • Ensuring health and safety regulations are up to code
  • Ensuring materials and machinery are delivered on time
  • Handling subcontractors
  • Liaising with homeowners and investors

qualities of a good construction manager

What qualities make a good construction manager?

As you might have guessed, construction managers are leaders. This means to be successful, you’ll not only need the right level of education and experience, but also the qualities to manage other people. This includes the following:

  • The ability to keep your cool under pressure
  • Superior communication and problem-solving skills
  • Time management and organisational skills.
  • Negotiation skills

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What should I do to become work in construction management?

Where does it all start? Like many professionals working in the building and construction industry in Australia, your first step will likely be an apprenticeship – e.g. plumbing, carpentry, bricklaying, or electrical. This is where you’ll learn the basics, hone your skills, build up your experience, and discover what you love about the industry.

Once you’ve completed your apprenticeship, you can become a qualified tradie. From here, your next move into becoming a construction manager is to look into higher-level building and construction courses.

That’s where we come in. For example, our CPC40120 Certificate IV in Building and Construction (Building) is an ideal next step. This course will give you the skills and knowledge needed to get your building license with the Victorian Building Authority. With more experience, you’ll be able to work as a construction manager on residential sites, or even start your own business.

If you want to take it up a notch, then it’s worth considering a course such as the CPC50220 Diploma of Building and Construction (Building). Armed with this qualification, you can pursue construction manager roles in both residential and commercial settings – across a range of fields.

While employers look upon university-level qualifications favourably, you can move into a construction manager role through a Certificate IV or Diploma. If you’ve got the relevant experience, a good work ethic, and an even better attitude – you’ll have more opportunities to rise up.

How Much More Could I Earn as a Registered Builder?

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What is the highest-paid construction manager?

Construction managers are some of the most sought-after professionals in the industry, not to mention one of the highest-paid. This means you can expect to find work across many fields. There are also many specialised construction manager roles, such as quantity surveyor, civil engineer, or building surveyor.

To dig a little deeper, you might find yourself working on projects in:

  • Civil engineering: roads, bridges, tunnels, airports.
  • Commercial: shopping centres, banks, hotels, resorts, warehouses.
  • Residential: housing, apartments, studios.
  • Agriculture: drains, fencing, water supplies.
  • Institutional: schools, hospitals, museums, police stations, town halls.
  • Industrial: manufacturing plants, production warehouses, storage facilities.

If you’re hoping for a career that’s both varied and rewarding, it’s safe to say that construction management is worth it.

According to PayScale, the average salary of construction managers in Australia is currently around $111,565 per year. However, the most experienced construction managers can earn upwards of $190,000 per year.

If starting a business is more your thing, then there’s no real limit on what you can earn – as long as you’ve got the drive, you know what you’re doing, and you have a solid team behind you.

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Start your journey in the building and construction industry with Builders Academy Australia

For those looking to get ahead in this industry, construction management is a great career choice. If you would like to know more about our building and construction courses, or the steps you need to take to become a construction manager – just get in touch and we’ll walk you through the details.

At BAA, we understand you might be a busy tradie by day. That’s why we offer our construction courses online too, so you can get ahead in your career – without falling behind in your life. For more information, just jump onto our website.

Find out how much more you could be earning as a registered builder through BAA.

This article has been updated and republished on 18th May 2023.