What are Construction Certifications?
In the construction industry, certifications benefit everyone involved – It elevates the individual’s professional practices as well as the contractor’s brand and quality of provided services. It is essential to have construction certifications because it indicates a high level of professionalism and skill in the construction process. Pankaj Patel was famously quoted, “it’s the sum of the parts that make up the whole, so in my opinion, excellence comes from how one undertakes to do something.” This is very true, with employers empowering their workers to get certified as well as seek individuals with specialized certifications.
1. Construction Management Certification Institute (CMCI):
According to the Construction Management Association of America, the Certified Construction Manager (CCM) is a “gold standard in personnel credentials for the construction management profession.” A construction manager certification differs from any other construction manager because it exhibits skill and talent. CCM recognizes professionals that have met the prescribed norm for construction management certification that go with field experience, formal education, along with knowledge of the CMAA (Construction Management of America).
CCMs provide professional services that apply effective and efficient management techniques that go into the planning, design, and construction of a project from start to finish. Also, they monitor and control the cost, quality, and time of a project. This certification is a sign of professional achievement; CCM helps validate to clients and supervisors that you’re among the experts in the construction industry. CMCI is independent of the CMAA and is composed of the Board of Governors (BoG), who are construction management professionals.
2. Bachelor’s Degree
Nowadays, it is more common for construction managers to have a bachelor’s degree in building science, construction engineering, construction management, or construction science. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the typical entry-level education is a Bachelors’s Degree.
3. American Institution of Constructors (AIC):
Among the AIC, there are two levels of certification for the Constructor Certification Program: the Associate Constructor (AC) and the Certified Professional Constructor (CPC).
Associate Constructor (AC):
It is the first level of the AIC certification. This level is ideal for recent graduates of a 4-year Construction Management graduate program or those transitioning from another industry. Associate Constructors are those who have a high level of skill and familiarity in construction management. ACs are important because they bring value and agree to abide by the AIC Code of ethics; this ensures that they are both professional and ethical members of the industry. The AC assessment is made up of 300 multiple choice questions that are given during two 4 hour sessions during a single day. The exam occurs twice a year, fall and spring, in over 60 locations nationwide.
Certified Professional Contractor (CPC):
It is the second and highest level of the AIC certification program. The CPC is ideal for those with several years of project experience, as well as those who want to take their career to the next step. CPCs allow a project to have a verified experienced individual that is knowledgeable on project efficiency and effectiveness. As well as ACs, Certified Professional Contractors abide by the AIC code of ethics. The CPC switched to an online Computer Based Test in the Spring of 2016. This certification exam occurs twice a year within a two-week period at hundreds of testing centers.
4. USGCB (U.S Green Building Council)
LEED is the most widely used global green building rating system. It is available for all construction project types and is recognized globally as a symbol of sustainability. LEED certification provides a structure to create highly efficient and cost-saving green buildings. These certifications are great to have because of their impact on buildings. Buildings use resources, which generate waste and are pricey to maintain. LEEDs green buildings are the practice of constructing, designing, and operating buildings to do the following:
–Decrease life cycle expenses
–maximize productivity and occupant health
–Use fewer resources
–Reduce waste & negative environmental impacts
5. Project Management Institute (PMI):
The PMI offers eight construction certifications, but the Project Management Professional (PMP) certification is the most applicable for experienced construction project managers. Having a PMP has significant advantages regarding salary and earning potential. According to the survey results from PMI’s Earning Power Salary respondents, those with a PMP certification garner a higher salary (20% higher on average) than those without a PMP certification. PMP exemplifies that one speaks and is knowledgable of the global language of project management. Finally, the PMP is beneficial because it associates you with experts, organizations, and professionals worldwide.
6. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)
The Outreach Training Program provides teachings on workplace safety to inform workers about workplace hazards and their rights. Employers are required to provide additional training for their workers on specific hazards of their job, required by OSHA standards because Outreach training does not fulfill the standards for the specific job. The Outreach Training Program is designed for workers because it provides avoidance, prevention, recognition, and reduction of workplace hazards, not OSHA standards. This program also overviews information regarding OSHA: worker’s rights, employer responsibilities, and steps to file a complaint. There are two types of programs, a 10-hour training program and a 30-hour training program. Both cover an overview of the hazards a worker may come across on a job site.
—10-hour: intended for entry-level workers
—30-hour: intended for workers at a higher depth of training and safety responsibility
7. National Association of Safety Professionals (NASP)
NASP is a professional certification that covers the complexity of being a safety professional and goes further than the OSHA standards and requirements. Moreover, the NASP has four programs that equip participants with the resources and tools you need to cut down job-related injuries and concentrate on the worker dynamic on the job-site.
Certified Safety Manager (CSM):
These individuals with this certificate are capable of working with minimal or no supervision while managing safety programs, procedures, and policies for any common business. Participants in this course will learn the following: How to avoid civil/criminal liability, interpret regulations, increase worker morale, and, most importantly, to minimize injuries in the workplace.
Certified Safety Manager Construction (CSMC):
CSMC is similar to the CSM, but what differentiates it is that a CSMC is a construction certificate that oversees multiple contractors and provides competent training, and develops required plans, programs for the construction industry
Certified Safety Director (CSD):
One who has a CSD certification is capable of developing and managing a comprehensive corporate or facility-wide safety program. This certification is “stand-alone,” however, NASP has a step-by-step design process; each level accomplished is a step closer to a higher level.
Licensed Safety Professional (LSP):
This is the most prestigious certification that the NASP offers because it exemplifies the highest level of aptitude. Individuals with LSP are influential with senior management and policymakers.
8. National Center for Construction Education & Research (NCCER):
NCCER’s certifications have over 70 craft areas to choose from, ranging from entry-level to high-level credentials. NCCER is under the National Craft Assessment and Certification Program (NCACP) and the Pipeline Training and Assessment Program. For example, craft and title certifications are alternative energy, boiler making, concrete finishing, construction technology, electrical, etc.
9. National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET)
The certifications under NICET cover civil engineering and electrical and mechanical systems engineering. Recently, more employers and local governments rely on NICET’s certification to measure the quality and efficiency of their workforce/job site. NICET has two categories of certification programs:
Technician Certification Program:
–Civil engineering technology; Construction materials Testing & Transportation Construction Inspection
–Electrical & Mechanical Systems Engineering program: Electrical Power, Fire protection, Security Systems
Technologist Certification Program:
–Technologist Certification requires a 4-year engineering technology degree
10. National Association of Corrosion Engineers (NACE):
NACE International Institute (NII) is known for its world-famous certification activities. They administer 23 certification programs on a variety of methods and practices. Those in NII are in a network of trusted certified professionals that aim to protect people and the environment uncontrollable acts of corrosion. Additionally, the qualified individual is certified and driven to get the job done on time and for the first time. The NII programs align them with the industry’s standards and best practices, which put them on a pedestal within the corrosion industry.
Ultimately, certifications not only benefit the constructor, but they benefit the employer and the owner as well. Certified individuals are seen as workers with high skill and a competent understanding of the construction industry. Certified CMs provide a higher level of assurance that their project is managed expertly and efficiently. Construction certifications are available online through online examinations.