Summary Guide forCement Masons and Concrete Finishers in California
May also be called: Concrete Finishers; Concrete Floor Installers; Curb Builders
What Would I Do?
Cement Masons and Concrete Finishers smooth and finish surfaces of poured concrete, such as floors, walls, sidewalks, roads, or curbs using a variety of hand and power tools. They align forms for sidewalks, curbs, or gutters; patch voids; and use saws to cut expansion joints. Their work encompasses small projects such as backyard patios and sidewalks to large jobs such as concrete highways.
Cement Masons typically work out-doors on construction sites. Cement Masons are exposed to most types of weather, except heavy rain or snow, and must work around wet concrete. The work is strenuous and requires significant physical effort that may involve lifting and carrying materials weighing up to 100 pounds. Cement Masons and Finishers usually work eight-hour shifts, Monday through Friday. However, their hours may be increased or decreased depending upon weather conditions.
Will This Job Fit Me?
The job of a Cement Mason and Concrete Finisher will appeal to those who enjoy activities that involve practical, hands-on problems and solutions.
What Wages and Benefits Can I Expect?
Cement Masons’ and Concrete Finishers’ wages in California differ widely depending on job duties and responsibilities, work experience, type of industry, and location of the work. Workers in large cities usually earn higher wages than those who work in smaller towns and rural areas.
The median wage in 2015 for Cement Masons and Concrete Finishers in California was $47,183 annually, or $22.69 hourly. The median is the point at which half of the workers earn more and half earn less.
Cement Masons and Concrete Finishers typically receive benefits that include vacation, health insurance, and retirement plans. For union members, the benefit packages are negotiated in contracts between employers and unions.
What is the Job Outlook?
Job opportunities for Cement Masons and Cement Finishers are expected to continue as more workers will be needed to build new highways, bridges, and non-residential structures to meet the demands of a growing population. There is also a continuing need to repair existing aging highways, bridges, and structures. Employment opportunities will be best for individuals who have completed courses or training through technical schools or apprenticeship programs.
How Do I Qualify?
The majority of employers do not require a high school diploma for Cement Mason or Concrete Finishers. Those pursing cement masonry careers must have basic math skills. Also, individuals must be physically fit and able to complete all phases of the work. Completion of a formal apprenticeship or vocational college program is the usual method of entry into this occupation.
Finding a Job
Direct application to employers remains one of the most effective job search methods. Jobs may also be found through registration with temporary employment agencies and through classified advertisements in newspapers, trade publications, and Internet job listings. Union members search for work by registering with their local hiring hall. Online job opening systems include JobCentral at www.jobcentral.com and CalJOBSSM at www.caljobs.ca.gov.
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