Construction Project CaptainJob Description, Salary, Career Path, and Trends

Construction project captains work closely with project managers and architects to oversee daily tasks and keep things moving smoothly, on schedule, and within budget. Their key responsibilities include producing construction documents, meeting with clients, and serving as the point person for questions and concerns. Project captains need to have excellent communication and interpersonal skills.

Sample job description

[Your Company Name] is looking for a motivated and experienced construction project captain. Responsibilities for the construction project captain will include working in extension with the project manager and construction teams in order to ensure quality, that daily tasks are completed, and that the schedule is met. This position will require frequent communication and solving challenging problems, so you must be comfortable working in a team environment on a construction site. If you are not confident in your ability to resolve issues quickly and efficiently while managing your team members, this job is not for you. Confidence and quick thinking are required for this position in order to be successful. Experience and certifications are not required, but a major plus. Experience in the construction and management fields is a benefit as well.

Typical duties and responsibilities

  • Produce construction documents
  • Communicate with clients during a project
  • Meet with architects and construction workers at a job site
  • Negotiate with vendors and subcontractors
  • Quality assurance and quality control
  • Monitor progress on projects
  • Meet deadlines 

Education and experience

Construction project captains need to earn a high school diploma or equivalent. Students should go on to receive a bachelor’s degree or a master’s degree from an accredited program, ideally in architecture. Employers prefer candidates with knowledge of building codes and Revit, modeling software for architects and engineers.

Required skills and qualifications

  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Strong leadership and interpersonal skills
  • Time-management skills and the ability to meet deadlines
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team
  • Experience with Revit modeling software
  • Outstanding decision-making skills
  • Knowledge of building codes
  • Calm, professional demeanor
  • Keen attention to detail

Preferred qualifications

  • 5+ years of experience managing construction employees
  • Construction manager certificate
  • Self-managed
  • Strong attention to detail
  • Ability to get projects done on time

Average salary and compensation

The average salary for a construction project captain is $72,200 in the United States. Position salary will vary based on experience, education, company size, industry, and market.

LocationSalary LowSalary High
Phoenix, Arizona$71,800$97,150
Los Angeles, California$81,000$109,600
Denver, Colorado$67,500$91,350
Washington, DC$82,250$111,250
Miami, Florida$67,200$90,900
Orlando, Florida$61,950$83,850
Tampa, Florida$62,550$84,650
Atlanta, Georgia$65,650$88,850
Chicago, Illinois$75,450$102,100
Boston, Massachusetts$81,600$110,450
Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota$65,050$88,000
New York City, New York$85,900$116,250
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania$69,950$94,650
Dallas, Texas$68,100$92,150
Houston, Texas$67,800$91,750
Seattle, Washington$78,550$106,278
National Average$61,350$83,030

Typical work environment

The job of a construction project captain will revolve around team management, project management, and ensuring that daily tasks, quotas, and schedules are completed according to plan. This construction project captain will be required to ensure the quality of completed tasks as well, and work closely with the construction vice president or a similar project manager, as well as with the specific construction teams. Construction project captains will be required to work full-time in order to oversee relevant projects and teams. A construction project captain will be in charge of quality assurance control, meeting standards, and more. The captain will also be in charge of managing and meeting with architects and team members. This means that a construction project captain will need a high level of communication ability and top-notch problem-solving skills.

Typical hours

Project captains often work regular hours, typically in an office, although they also visit construction sites. They frequently log more than 40 hours a week and might need to work in the evenings or on weekends to meet deadlines.

Available certifications

Construction project captains will oftentimes be required to hold some sort of relevant certification or previous work experience. Some of the certificates required might be:

  • Certified Construction Manager (CCM). The Certified Construction Manager is a very good certification for a construction manager or construction project captain to acquire. This certification covers the basics of management and relevant construction management techniques. This certificate is extremely beneficial to the position of construction project captain.
  • Construction Management Certification Institute (CMCI). The Construction Management Certification Institute provides a gold standard for management professionals. This institute provides certifications for construction management and other general management skills and is extremely beneficial in the recognition of a construction captain or manager.

Career path

The first step to becoming a construction project captain is to earn a high school diploma or equivalent. Students then should pursue a bachelor’s degree, preferably in architecture. Those who go on to receive a master’s degree will enhance their career opportunities. An architecture license also could open doors for job candidates.

US, Bureau of Labor Statistics’ job outlook

SOC Code: 11-9021

2020 Employment448,000
Projected Employment in 2030499,400
Projected 2020-2030 Percentage Shift 11% increase
Projected 2020-2030 Numeric Shift51,400 increase

Population growth means that construction-related jobs, and project captains, in particular, will continue to be in demand. Maintenance, improvements, and construction of roads and bridges also will create more job opportunities. The emphasis on environmentally friendly development and energy efficiency should give the industry a boost as well.

Job prospects in the construction industry tend to ebb and flow with the economy. The Construction Management Association of America offers career coaching, a learning center, and job listings for candidates. Another good resource is the American Institute of Architects.

Sample interview questions

  • What is a construction project captain responsible for?
  • Are you comfortable with a leadership position?
  • How would you resolve any issue that arises between team members in order to ensure the schedule and tasks are completed successfully?
  • Do you think you work better independently or as part of a team?
  • What are some of the challenges you expect as a construction project captain?
  • How would you describe your leadership style/the ideal leadership style?
  • What kind of construction projects do you have experience with?
  • Do you have any relevant certifications for this type of job?
  • Do you have any previous experience in team management?
  • How do you ensure that the project stays on a deadline?
  • Have you ever had an OSHA violation on the job? How did you fix it?
  • What’s the most important aspect of managing a team in construction?

Construction Project Captain Jobs in Ashburn

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