Careers rarely develop the way we plan them. Our career path often takes many twists and turns, with particular events, choices and people influencing our direction.

We asked Louise Lynch from ESB to give some advice for people considering this job:


Louise Lynch

Structural Engineer


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  Louise Lynch
If you always want to know how things work and are fascinated by structures like grandstands or bridges then a career in civil and structural engineering may suit you. If in school you enjoy subjects like maths and physics, and since these would be the foundations to the engineering college course, you will probably enjoy the course. If you like the idea of working for a company where you could get to travel, then international companies such as ESB International would suit you well. Engineering is a good and challenging career so you have to want to be challenged in your work, to solve problems and to come up with ways to improve designs.

The Investigative person will usually find a particular area of science to be of interest. They are inclined toward intellectual and analytical activities and enjoy observation and theory. They may prefer thought to action, and enjoy the challenge of solving problems with clever technology. They will often follow the latest developments in their chosen field, and prefer mentally stimulating environments.
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Floor and Wall Tiler
In Summary header image

Floor and Wall Tiler

Floor and Wall Tilers fix tiles to provide surface finishes to internal/external, vertical, horizontal, curved, angle and stepped or shaped surfaces. They also fix mosaic, chemical resistant tiles, marble tiles, natural stone and terracotta.

Eddie O'Brien, Tiler, D.D. O'Brien & Co. Ltd

The work includes setting out tiles, marking grid lines, and levelling datum lines and tile batons. It also involves fixing ceramic tiles to walls, floors and steps and laying vinyl tiles and sheet materials.

Floor and wall tilers generally work within the domestic and industrial sectors of the construction industry. They often consult with clients on the design and layout of work projects.

Floor and Wall Tilers require many skills including:

  • Working with a variety of specialised hand and power tools
  • Knowledge of a range of materials and adhesives
  • Performing a range of measurements and calculations
  • Interpreting drawings and diagrams
  • Planning and organising

Training header image

Phase 1: With Employer

  • Induction Training
  • Introduction to Health & Safety
  • Introduction to Tools & Equipment
  • Introduction to Basic Skills
Phase 2: Delivered in Training Centre (20 week)

Course Content: Induction Wall Tiling Floor Tiling Specialist Tiling Systems

Phase 3:
With Employer

Work Based Training and Assessments

Phase 4:
Delivered in Educational Colleges (10 weeks)
Course Content:
  • Decorative Wall Tiling
  • Mosaic Tiling
  • Industrial Floor Tiling 

Phase 5: With Employer

Work Based Training and Assessments

The overall duration of this apprenticeship is a minimum of 4 years provided all phases are successfully completed.

On successful completion of the programme the learner is awarded a Level 6 Advanced Certificate Craft – Floor & Wall Tiling.

Personal Qualities header image

As a Floor and Wall Tiler you will need to be physically active and to be able to work with your hands.

An awareness of health and safety and good housekeeping is essential as well as attention to detail and an eye for the aesthetic.

The Floor and Wall Tiler must have the ability to:

  • Plan, Organise and Communicate effectively
  • Solve problems
  • Work independently and as part of a team
  • Show a positive attitude
  • Recognise the need for good customer relations
  • Demonstrate good work practices including time keeping, tidiness, responsibility, quality awareness and safety awareness
Note: A person wishing to become an apprentice Tiler must pass a colour–vision test approved by SOLAS.

Work Activities header image

  • Learning and developing new practical craft-related skills, knowledge and competence
  • Working with and learning from experienced craftspersons
  • Seeing a job through from start to finish
  • Comply with Health and Safety requirements
  • Working with technical drawings and diagrams
  • Being accurate with numbers in counting, measuring and arithmetic
  • Being well organised and careful with practical tasks
  • Accuracy and attention to detail
  • Using tools and machinery
  • Being aware of how colours and shapes are used in design
  • Working at height
  • Working mainly outdoors
  • Lifting or carrying heavy items
  • Being physically active
  • Taking responsibility for own learning, including the allocation of study time
  • Bending, kneeling and working in cramped and awkward spaces
  • Passing all your phase exams (theory, practicals skills demonstration)
  • Earning as you learn

Pay & Fees header image

Funding Arrangements

All apprentices are paid a Training Allowance while attending off-the-job training in training centres or college, and an Apprentice Rate of pay during the on-the-job phases of their apprenticeship.

Details of the Training Allowances payable are available here.

What apprentice rate wages are paid?

Apprentice rates are paid for the on-the-job phases of apprenticeships. The actual rates paid may vary depending on the occupation and employer. Generally, the rates will increase in a number of steps during the apprenticeship. For example:


All other Trades




€ / hr

€ / hr

1st Year Rate

2nd Year Rate

3rd Year Rate

4th Year Rate









Note: You should always seek details of specific rates of pay for apprentices from prospective employers.

Apprentice Student Contribution

The Annual Student Contribution is levied on students attending Higher Education Institutions including Institutes of Technology. As part of the changes included in Budget 2014, apprentices now pay the same contribution as full time students, but their contribution is based on the time they spend in the Institute or College.

The Student Contribution is payable to the IoT /College on the date of registration for the training phase. You should consult the relevant IoT/College for details of payment options.

Note: Apprentices are required to pay an examination fee to the IoT or College for repeat exams. 

Female Apprentices' bursary for employers

To promote the entry of women into the designated apprenticeships, a bursary is available to employers to encourage an increased level of recruitment of female apprentices.

For more information Click here or contact your local ETB Training Centre.

Entry Requirements header image

The minimum age at which the employment of an apprentice may commence is 16 years of age.

The minimum educational requirements are:

1. Grade D in five subjects in the Department of Education & Skills Junior Certificate Examination or an approved equivalent,
2. The successful completion of an approved Pre-Apprenticeship course 
3. Three years’ work experience gained over sixteen years of age in a relevant designated industrial activity as SOLAS shall deem acceptable 

Note: These are the current approved minimum educational requirements for apprenticeship programmes, however, previous experience of the following subjects would be an advantage but not essential:

  • Mathematics
  • Technical Drawing/Graphics
  • Construction Studies
  • Technology

Getting an Apprenticeship header image

You must obtain employment as an apprentice in your chosen occupation.

  • The employer must be approved to train apprentices.
  • The employer must register you as an apprentice within two weeks of recruitment.
Note: Floor & Wall Tiler Apprenticeship applicants are required to pass a colour vision test approved by SOLAS.

Are you interested in a construction apprenticeship?
If so, register your interest by creating an account and uploading a short personal profile via this link.

Career Opportunities header image

On successful completion of the apprenticeship programme, apprentices are qualified to work within the recognised trade or profession. 

Where apprentices and craftspersons have the necessary ability, initiative and basic qualifications, opportunities are available for advancement. These include advanced technology courses and management courses which are available in Institutes of Technology, Schools of Management and Professional Institutes.

Many craftspersons use their apprenticeship qualification as a platform to launch careers such as engineers, managers, teachers and instructors amongst others.

For those with entrepreneurial flair, starting your own business is also very desirable.

Occupation Profile header image

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Progression Routes header image

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