Which Construction Trade is Right for You?


There are so many great trades in the building and construction industry, each requiring their own set of skills and knowledge.

So then, what are the best trades to learn? It’s a tough question, you’ll want to consider questions such as:

  • Does one trade appeal to your interests more than another?
  • Would you rather build cabinets or fix drainage systems?
  • Would you rather install solar panels or paint houses?
  • How important is the money side of things?

It’s best to choose a trade that suits your skills, interests and personality, as well as the building and construction courses you might want to study. To help you make a decision, let’s look at four of best trades to learn in Australia.

How do you decide what trade to choose?

1. Carpentry

When it comes to construction trades, few are more versatile and rewarding than carpentry.

The best part about being a carpenter?

You get to work with your hands, spend time in the great outdoors and build structures that make a real impact on people’s lives.

Career opportunities

If you want to become a joiner or framework carpenter, or even a green carpenter, you’ll find there are many opportunities to build your career—whether this means starting your own business, or working with a specialist firm on different kinds of projects.

How to become a qualified carpenter

Doing an apprenticeship and getting trained up in a carpentry trade will lay the foundations for the rest of your working life. Once you’re qualified, not only will you earn decent money, you’ll also have the option to take your education further.

For example, you could enrol in our CPC40120 Certificate IV in Building and Construction (Building). This qualification will help you pursue more supervisory roles in industry, as well as prepare you to go for your builder’s license.

From here, you could step it up a notch and move into our CPC50220 Diploma of Building and Construction (Building). Higher level building and construction courses equal higher-level carpentry trades. With this qualification, you could pursue a career as a project supervisor, construction manager, or site supervisor on residential and commercial builds.

How Much More Could You Be Earning?

2. Plumbing

There’s more to plumbing than you might think.

The best part about being a plumber?

In fact, it’s one of the most varied construction trades in the industry, with opportunities to find work across a number of different classes.

Career opportunities

Plumbers are in high demand in Australia. And the more experience and education you have, the better your job prospects are.

As a plumber, no two days are the same, and at the higher end of the spectrum, it’s one of the best-paid careers in Australia.

How to become a qualified plumber

This means you’ll need to get registered or licensed in particular classes. From drainage, fire protection and mechanical service, to gasfitting, irrigation and roofing, there are so many ways into the industry—and just as many ways to build a rewarding career.

3. Electrician

The best part about being an electrician?

Electricians are some the highest paid tradies in the building and construction industry.

In terms of earning potential, it’s one of the best trades to learn in Australia. But money aside, it’s also one of the most interesting and varied paths you can choose.

Career opportunities

You might find yourself specialising in installation or maintenance, or in a specific area such as solar panels. Whatever path you go down, an electrician needs to be a logical thinker and a problem solver.

How to become a qualified electrician

Like most construction trades, electricians start off with an apprenticeship or traineeship before working their way up. There are also additional requirements and qualifications for more complex and hazardous roles.

best trades to learn

4. Brickwork

The best part about brickwork?

Bricklaying and stone masonry are solid career choices, with opportunities to find work all over the world and on all kinds of construction projects. Depending on your skills and interests, you can choose to get qualified in one or both of these areas.

Career opportunities

Bricklaying and stone masonry are solid career choices, with opportunities to find work all over the world and on all kinds of construction projects.

These are two of the best trades to learn, and both are ancient professions. As a stonemason, you’ll create and restore stonework on structures such as buildings, walls, piers, curb stones and more, and you might specialise in curving, laying or fixing.

How to become a qualified bricklayer

Both career pathways require modern training, apprenticeships and qualifications. As a bricklayer, you’ll work on varying projects. You’ll trim, shape and lay bricks, apply mortar, and make sure courses are straight.

What trade is the best?

Hopefully you’ll have a better idea of the best trades to learn for your own professional development. Keep in mind these are just four of many within the building and construction industry. The possibilities and opportunities are endless when you put your mind to it.

With extra research, you might find yourself leaning more towards becoming a roof tiler, glazier or painter. The point is, there are many ways to carve out a rewarding career.

If you’re after more information about construction trades, or what building and construction courses are out there, get in touch and we’ll walk you through the details.

How Much More Could You Be Earning?


This blog post was revised and republished on 30 May 2022.