Step one: Choose a course
There are two pathways to becoming a building consultant. You could build up impressive experience in the construction industry through experience. Or you will need to pursue education first. For the most part, people will take the education route. You will need to have very good knowledge of the building industry so choosing a tertiary or Bachelors course is advisable. This will give you the level of training you need to get started.
Step two: Register with a professional association
If you register with a professional consultancy association you improve your standing in the eyes of potential employers. This will help you to find work. Also, as a member, you will have the opportunity to network with other professionals which can help you to find opportunities.
Step three: Look for your first job
Once you have graduated and registered you are ready to look for your first job. At the moment, the construction industry is booming. There are lots of opportunities for buildings consultants. In particular in the cities. When applying for work remember to tailor your resume and cover letter for each application. Remember to highlight your qualifications, association registration, personal strengths and any experience you have.
Step four: Consider a specialisation
Buildings consultants have knowledge about all aspects of the construction industry. This means you are well positioned to focus and specialise in one of the fields you are knowledgeable about. You may work for residential projects or commercial projects and you can also consider working privately or on a freelance basis. Here are three possible specialisations to consider.
As a financial consultant, you use your knowledge of finance and budgeting. You use this knowledge, in relation to construction, to help develop financially viable projects. There is a need for financial consultants in the public and private sector.
In this specialisation, you offer your expert opinion in a court of law or a dispute tribunal. Due to your detailed all-encompassing knowledge, the courts value your professional viewpoint.
Workplace Health and Safety Specialist
As a health and safety specialist, you focus on onsite health and safety. You monitor construction projects to make sure they are compliant with legislation. As well, as checking for important features such as fire exits, suitable disabled access. Furthermore, you monitor projects to check they are environmentally resilient and energy efficient.
What is a Building Consultants Duties?
When you work as a building consultant your overarching goal is to help construction go smoothly. To achieve this, you consider all aspects of the project. Then, try to foresee where problems may come up. Thus, from the start giving advice to your clients on what could go wrong and how to avoid potential problems. You need to consider logistics and how the project needs organising to prevent hold-ups. Furthermore, you consider compliance and the project, checking to make sure there will not be conflicts between the two. You give advice in relation to project finances and how to avoid problems further along the line. As the onsite expert, it is your job to consider every possible scenario at every stage of construction. Then, you flag up areas of concern which need action. You do this by consulting the plans in the early stages, then later inspecting the project regularly.
- Inspecting properties at different stages of development
- Advising clients on the conditional and financial progress of the project
- Achieving safety by ensuring compliance with the Building Code of Australia (BCA)
- Mediating any disputes during construction
- Giving expert advice in court or at tribunals
Skills for Success
Foremost, you will need to have extensive knowledge of the construction industry. This knowledge should cover all aspects of construction. You should understand the financing behind construction projects. As well as thorough knowledge of legislation and building regulations. Furthermore, you will need a good understanding of health and safety. As a beneficial skill, you understand environmental sustainability. As well as how to implement best sustainable practices in construction. You must pay strict attention to detail, so you are able to pick up on potential problems. As a part of the scope of your knowledge, you need to appreciate what the different professionals involved in the process do. Communication is a key skill. This is because you work in cooperation with architects, engineers, and construction workers. You need to listen to them and find ways to advise them from your own position of expertise without undermining them and causing conflict.
Skills and attributes
- In-depth knowledge of the building industry and the BCA
- Pays attention to detail
- Monitors construction for safety
- Able to comprehend the financial status of the project
- Good at communicating and listening
- Passionate about sustainable development
How much do building consultants earn in Australia?
In Australia, building consultants earn a median wage of $64,413 per year. This varies according to a number of factors and is intended as a reference only, from Payscale 05/’18.