Job Description:

Formworkers build temporary wood or metal frameworks, used to cast concrete and other materials in construction projects.

Job Category:
Metals & Mining

What you will do:

On a typical day you could:

  • make formwork and falsework ‘casts’ or moulds to form concrete items like foundations, staircases, beams, columns and walls
  • read and interpret site drawings, instructions and plans
  • measure, shape and cut materials like wood and metal
  • build wooden structures using power and hand tools
  • assemble pre-made metal frames, scaffolding and platforms
  • quality check casts to make sure shape and measurements are correct
  • repair any broken parts
  • work with other site workers to pour concrete
  • once set, take formwork apart to be reused
    move, handle and store materials safely


You’ll need:

  • knowledge of building and construction
  • knowledge of maths
  • the ability to use, repair and maintain machines and tools
    to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device

As well as:

  • the ability to work well with your hands
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail (organisational skills)
  • the ability to work well with others (teamwork skills)
  • physical skills like movement, coordination and dexterity
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
Illustration of employee looking at workspace

Entry Requirements:

To become a Formworker, there are no specific subjects that are typically required. However, certain subjects and skills can be beneficial for those considering a career in formwork construction. Formworkers are responsible for creating moulds and frameworks for concrete structures, so skills related to mathematics, practical work, and construction can be helpful. Here are some subjects that may be relevant:

  1. Mathematics: Strong mathematical skills are important for measurements, calculations, and understanding construction plans and blueprints.
  2. Design and Technology: Courses related to design and technology can provide practical skills and knowledge related to construction methods, materials, and tools.
  3. Science: Basic knowledge of science, particularly Physics, can help in understanding structural principles and the behaviour of materials used in construction.

Post School

You can get into this job through:

  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • working towards
  • applying directly

You could take a course in carpentry skills that may help you get into this role.

Courses include:

  • Diploma in Site Carpentry (Level 2 in the UK)
  • Diploma in Carpentry and Joinery (Level 2 in the UK)

You could do a formworker intermediate apprenticeship.

You may also gain some of the skills and knowledge for this role from a carpentry and joinery intermediate apprenticeship.

These typically take between 18 and 24 months to complete as a mix of workplace learning and off-the-job study.

You may be able to work your way into formwork from other construction trades like site labourer. Your employer may be able to support you to gain a qualification through a formworker apprenticeship.

Direct Application
You can apply for jobs if you have experience and qualifications from related construction trades like carpentry or joinery.

In the UK, you’ll need a Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) card or equivalent to train and work on a construction site

Restrictions and Requirements
You’ll need to:

  • be able to cope with working at height

Working Hours and Environment:

You could work on a construction site.

Your working environment may be physically demanding, at height, outdoors in all weathers and you’ll travel often.

You may need to wear safety clothing and use safety equipment.

Career Path & Progression:

You could be self-employed and run your own business, working as a contractor for different companies.

With experience and further qualifications you could move into a supervisory position, overseeing the work of a construction team.

You could transfer your skills to working in other carpentry and joinery jobs.