If it inspires you to work in a construction and remodeling industry, a career you may consider is that of a carpet fitter-floor layer.
Carpet fitters and floor layers are trained professionals who have an expertise in laying floor coverings. Their job involves installation of carpets, rugs, floors and floor coverings in public, private and commercial buildings such as shops, bars, restaurants and offices. They work with a variety of materials including carpeting, carpet tiles, wood, laminates, lino, rubber and cork sheeting.
It is required that you possess the following if you wish to carve a niche in this profession:
- Creative skills
- Physical fitness
- Good with numbers and mathematical calculations
- Friendly and polite disposition
- Deliver quick and accurate results
- Experience in the field
- Health and safety awareness
Education and Training
No formal or set education is required. Minimum GCSE standard in English and Mathematics is preferred so as to meet the requirement of good communication and practical skills.
There are various short intensive courses for beginners provided by “The Flooring Industry Training Association (FITA)” and the “UK Flooring Academy (UKFA)”.
Many building contractors may seek your Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) card before employing you. The card certifies your skills and ability to carry out the job in a proper manner. To get your card, you must:
- Pass the CITB Health, Safety and Environment test
- Prove your occupational competence (by holding appropriate qualifications)
You start your job by joining a company and training on the job. For a speedy growth in your career, you may enroll for an Apprenticeship scheme or you may also take a college course, such as the Level 1 Award in Flooring Operations or Basic Construction Skills, (with flooring options), which aims at imparting the necessary skills needed for the job. You need to contact local colleges for course availability and entry requirements.
After getting employed, you may get a chance to work towards an industry qualification like the Level 2 (NVQ) Diploma in Floor covering Occupations.
Your job as a carpet fitter involves various tasks such as:
- To visit customers on site
- Clear the work area of furniture and taking off doors
- Remove old flooring
- Measure up floor space
- Estimate the amount of material needed
- Draft a plan to make the most efficient use of materials
- Ensure any patterned cuts/blocks match and only the necessary cuts are made
Challenges of a Job
Although no certificate, degree or any kind of formal education is required for this profession, it is vital that you undergo a required training and gain a desired experience. The job of a carpet fitter poses numerous challenges such as:
- A lot of physical work
- Travelling to sites
- Night shifts on commercial premises
- Breathing difficulties and dust allergies
- Work schedule of a basic 39-hour week
Carpet fitters and floor layers usually work in homes or on commercial sites. Most of them are self employed and those who are not can easily find employment with:
- Retail carpet shops
- Department stores
- Specialist flooring firms
- Interior designers
- Carpet showrooms
- Carpet manufacturers
As per nationalcareersservice.direct.gov.uk, the starting salaries of a carpet fitter can be between £12,000 and £16,000 a year. With experience this can rise to around £20,000 to £25,000 a year. Specialist floor layers may earn up to £30,000 a year.
Finally, if you like doing a lot of practical work this can be a rewarding career choice.