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 Colin Butterly from Construction Industry Federation to give some advice for people considering this job:

 

Colin Butterly

Site Manager - Trade Entry

Construction Industry Federation

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  Colin	Butterly
For anyone who even vaguely considers a trade or a management job they shouldn’t hesitate to pursue it as it can surprise you how capable you can become despite any reservations you may have.

It could even introduce you to different roles in the industry that you hadn’t realised were available to you or felt where out of your reach.
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Administrative people are interested in work that offers security and a sense of being part of a larger process. They may be at their best operating under supervisors who give clear guidelines, and performing routine tasks in a methodical and reliable way.

They tend to enjoy clerical and most forms of office work, where they perform essential administrative duties. They often form the backbone of large and small organisations alike. They may enjoy being in charge of office filing systems, and using computers and other office equipment to keep things running smoothly. They usually like routine work hours and prefer comfortable indoor workplaces.
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Occupation Details

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Builders' Yard Assistant

Job Zone

Education
Some of these occupations may require a Leaving Certificate or similar.

Related Experience
Little or no previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is needed for these occupations. For example, a person can become a waiter or waitress even if he/she has never worked before.

Job Training
Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few days to a few months of training. Usually, an experienced worker could show you how to do the job.

Job Zone Examples
These occupations involve following instructions and helping others. Examples include taxi drivers, amusement and recreation attendants, counter clerks, construction laborers, and waiters or waitresses.

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At a Glance... header image

Builders' yard assistants handle building materials, ranging from sand and cement to bathroom fittings.


The Work header image

Builders' yards are attached to the premises of builders' merchants and supply building craftspeople such as plumbers, electricians and builders with the items they need to do their jobs. 

An assistant's duties may vary slightly according to the type of goods that the builders' merchant sells. The 'heavy side' of the industry deals with bricks, cement, timber etc, for the construction trade. The 'light side' covers painting and decorating, bathroom fittings etc.  
 
Yard assistants mainly work outside, helping to check in goods, move, display and load them, and keep the yard clean and safe.  
 
When they open up the yard each morning, assistants usually have to display the products and materials outside so that the customers have a chance to see what they are buying. They move goods in and out of store, sometimes using trolleys, ladders, forklift trucks and other aids. They also have to handle and store goods in the right way such as stacking wood so that it stays dry and does not warp.  
 
Meeting customers is another part of yard assistants' work. They show the customer which goods are available and may also have to measure, weigh or cut articles to the size or quantity that the customer wants. After this, they may help package the order and load it onto a van, a lorry or the customers' own transport. They must also make sure that the health and safety of all customers is assured. They must dispose of dangerous or toxic materials in the approved way.  
 
Builders' yard assistants are also responsible for making sure that the area is regularly swept, cleaned and, if necessary, washed. 


Tasks & Activitiesheader image

The following is a list of the most commonly reported tasks and activities for this occupation

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Answer customers' questions about merchandise and advise customers on merchandise selection.

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Itemize and total customer merchandise selection at checkout counter, using cash register, and accept cash or charge card for purchases.

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Take inventory or examine merchandise to identify items to be reordered or replenished.

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Pack customer purchases in bags or cartons.

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Stock shelves, racks, cases, bins, and tables with new or transferred merchandise.

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Receive, open, unpack and issue sales floor merchandise.

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Clean display cases, shelves, and aisles.

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Compare merchandise invoices to items actually received to ensure that shipments are correct.

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Requisition merchandise from supplier based on available space, merchandise on hand, customer demand, or advertised specials.

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Transport packages to customers' vehicles.

Work Activities header image

The following is a list of the most commonly reported work activities in this occupation.

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Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships:  Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.

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Handling and Moving Objects:  Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.

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Performing for or Working Directly with the Public:  Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.

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Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events:  Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.

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Performing General Physical Activities:  Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.

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Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge:  Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.

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Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates:  Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.

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Controlling Machines and Processes:  Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).

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Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work:  Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.

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Training and Teaching Others:  Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.


Knowledge header image

The following is a list of the five most commonly reported knowledge areas for this occupation.

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Customer and Personal Service:  Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.

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Mathematics:  Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.

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English Language:  Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

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Administration and Management:  Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.

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Public Safety and Security:  Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.


Skillsheader image

The following is a list of the most commonly reported skills used in this occupation.

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Active Listening:   Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

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Critical Thinking:   Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

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Speaking:   Talking to others to convey information effectively.

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Active Learning:   Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.

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Time Management:   Managing one's own time and the time of others.

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Reading Comprehension:   Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

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Coordination:   Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.

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Monitoring:   Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

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Complex Problem Solving:   Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.

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Social Perceptiveness:   Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

Personal Qualitiesheader image

You must be fit and strong as the work involves a lot of standing and heavy lifting. Some yards can be dusty and may not be suitable if you have asthma or chest complaints.  
 
Taking orders and working under supervision is a vital part of the job and you should be prepared to do this. You must also be prepared to do some repetitive, dirty tasks. Certain knowledge of the products and services available will be needed.  
 
A builder's yard can sometimes be a dangerous place, so you must use common sense and be sensible about safety precautions, especially when moving heavy loads or using equipment. Basic English and legible handwriting are needed to make out receipts and invoices or assist with stock control. A reasonable standard of arithmetic is also needed for these tasks and for estimating and calculating sizes and weights.  
 
Customer contact means that you'll need to talk to people in a polite and helpful way.


Further Informationheader image

A detailed description of this occupation can be found on a number of online databases. Follow the link(s) below to access this information:

Note: you will be leaving the CareersPortal Site

Go..Timber Yard Operative - from:  N.C.S. [UK]
Go..Yard Person - from:  N.C.S. [UK]

Related Occupationsheader image

Contactsheader image

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Organisation: Construction Industry Federation
  Address: Construction House, Canal Road, Dublin 6
  Tel: (01) 406 6000
  Email: Click here
  Url Click here

 

Job Search


Career Guidance

This occupation is popular with people who have the following Career Interests...


...and for people who like working in the following Career Sectors:

Building, Construction & Property
Sales, Retail & Purchasing

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