CONSTRUCTION is building anything from the ground up, including architectural services, building, plumbing, gas-fitting, electrical services, roofing, scaffolding and more.

Construction in Waikato/Bay of Plenty is forecast to increase to $7.6b by 2026, driven largely by the residential (or housing) sector, so anyone with skills in this sector – and anyone keen to enter these trades – will be in high demand.

There are more than 7000 businesses in the Construction Sector across the Waikato, and just over 30,000 jobs. The sector is forecast to be the third top growth industry for the Waikato, with 11.2% growth in the workforce forecast from 2021 to 2026. This sector also has a high self-employment rate of 24.4%, compared to the 17.5% average for Waikato. Many people with skills in a construction trade – people who start off on the tools – go on to start their own businesses. (MBIE and Infometrics Ltd. 2022)

Did you know…?

There is a strong construction pipeline in the Waikato with building consents, roading infrastructure developments and housing projects on the rise.

Investment in the construction sector increases demand for construction-related occupations and apprenticeship programmes.

INFRASTUCTURE is planning, designing, building and laying utilities for the community, including:

>> Essential services below ground
e.g. drainage, sewerage, dams, broadband

>> Services above ground
e.g. roads, tunnels, bridges, ports, pavements, electricity generation

According to Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, infrastructure activity is forecast to continue to increase to $10.1 billion in 2025 and Waikato is one of the regions which will contribute the most to this.

Civil Engineers are heavily involved in the infrastructure industry, find out more about Engineering in the Manufacturing and Technology Sector »

Is a job in Construction and Infrastructure right for you?

Find out!

Do you like…

  • Working with your hands
  • Working with tools
  • Using or driving heavy equipment or machinery
  • Working in a team?

Are you interested in…

  • Following and developing plans
  • Problem solving
  • Making calculations
  • Preparing estimates and quotes?

Do you have these skills?

      • Technical ability
      • Willingness to learn
      • Safety awareness
      • Team work
      • Quality focus
      • Adaptability
      • Reliability
      • Motivation

Sound like you? Consider becoming part of the sector building, maintaining and repairing Aotearoa from below the ground up!

Job examples and pay in the construction and infrastructure sector

Architect$60K to $140KAverage
Architectural Technician$70K to $125KAverage
Building and Construction Manager$100K to $224KAverage
Building Surveyor$61K to $112KAverage
Cabinet Maker$48K to $60KAverage
Energy and Chemical Plant Operator$70K to $180KAverage
Interior Designer$55K to $120KAverage
Landscape Architect$80K to $120KAverage
Painter/Decorator$53K to $76KAverage
Project Manager$90K to $170KAverage
Quantity Surveyor$48K to $170KAverage
Roading Leading Handup to $85KGood
Signmaker$48K to $70KAverage
Survey Technician$48K to $80KAverage
Surveyor$90K to $110KAverage
Water/Wastewater Treatment Operator$48K to $130KGood
Brick and Blocklayer$23 to $60Average
Building and Construction Labourer$23 to $40Average
Building Insulator$23 to $30Average
Carpenter$23 to $41Average
Concrete Worker$25 to $30Average
Crane Operator$23 to $70Average
Earthmoving Machine Operator$25 to $40Average
Electrician$34 to $43Average
Flooring Installer$23 to $35Average
Glazier$23 to $30Average
Joiner$23 to $35Average
Plasterer$23 to $30Average
Plumber/Gasfitter$23 to $53Average
Roading Construction Worker$23 to $24Good
Roofer$23 to $40Average
Scaffolder$24 to $37Good
Stonemason$23 to $40Average
Wall/Floor Tiler$23 to $35Average
*Rates are based on full-time work and are an indication only.

What’s your top advice for someone looking at this type of work?

“Attitude is Number One. Someone with the right attitude can learn anything!”

 – Adam Finlay – Foster site manager

Becoming an Apprentice

Did you know…?

The Targeted Training and Apprenticeship Fund (TTAF; also known as free trades training) supports learners to undertake vocational education and training without fees and runs until December 2022. It is available for a range of training and apprenticeship programmes targeted towards the areas in the Construction and Infrastructure industry where employer need is strong and/or expected to grow.

Building and Construction Industry Training Organisation (BCITO) says that while the construction sector has changed considerably since COVID-19, there is still a critical shortage of skills and demand for building work continues to grow. The construction boom is forecast to be extensive and long lasting and to meet this demand, the industry will need at least 80,000 people across New Zealand in the next few years.

Do you have what it takes?

BCITO outline what it’s really like on the job as an apprentice in the Construction sector…

As an apprentice you’ll be expected to:

  • start early or finish late (depending on the job)
  • work on large long-term projects or small repair jobs
  • travel to various job sites
  • work outside and inside
  • stick to deadlines
  • work in noisy or dirty conditions
  • work at heights or in confined spaces
  • follow health and safety guidelines
  • concentrate for extended periods of time
  • be accurate – other tradespeople rely on your measurements or quantities
  • work both on your own and as part of a team
  • listen and communicate well
  • be comfortable with tools and machinery
  • maintain your tools


» Wintec

NZ Certificate in Plumbing, Gas fitting and Drainlaying
Construction Trade Skills (Level 3)
Electrical Engineering (Level 3)                                          Carpentry (Level 4)                                                                  Mechanical Engineering (Level 3)

» ETCO – The Electrical Training Experts

NZ Certificate in Electrical Engineering (Level 3)
NZ Certificate in Electrical Engineering (Level 4)

Learn more about this training provider »

Meet the Waikato young people at work in Construction and Infrastructure!

Chip Runner

Roofing Apprentice

Electrical Apprentice

Scaffolding apprentice

Site Manager

Site Manager

Carpentry Apprentice

Plumber, Gas fitter, Drainlayer

Substation Supervisor

Carpentry Apprentice

Plumbing, Gasfitting and Drainlaying Apprentice

Quantity Surveyor

WATCH: Waikato young people in Construction and Infrastructure careers

Site Manager
Livingstone Building

Carpentry apprentice
Foster Construction

Carpentry Apprentice
Foster Construction

Young Plumber of the Year
Plumbing World

Foster Construction

Quantity Surveying
Foster Construction


Disclaimer: While the FutureForce® Team makes every effort to ensure the information on this website is correct, the editor and publisher do not assume and hereby disclaim any liability to any party for any disruption or loss caused by error or omissions. Content is designed to complement, but not replace, the advice of a career advisor.