The construction industry is filled with professionals who know what they’re doing and are excellent at their jobs. Companies looking to fill critical construction management jobs often look for individuals who have received certification in the industry.
That’s why one of the most important aspects of furthering your career is pursuing construction certifications. Professional certification can be a crucial differentiator to set you apart from other construction professionals seeking similar job opportunities.
The American Institute of Constructors (AIC) supports individual constructors by offering professional certification exams that ensure you have specialized knowledge and skills to support complex construction works. Learn how to find a great job and advance in your career with the support of certifications.
Opportunities for Construction Certifications through AIC
At AIC, we offer two professional certifications that are designed for constructors with different levels of experience in the industry. Each of our certifications can help you further your construction career.
1. CAC Level I Exam
The Certified Associate Constructor (CAC) exam helps individuals confirm they have a solid foundation of knowledge in the construction industry and have the appropriate skills to manage construction projects.
Constructors who pass this exam can confidently tell a current or prospective employer that they are ready to make a meaningful contribution to their company and the construction industry as a whole.
Not only does passing the CAC Level I Exam confirm that you have an intricate knowledge of on-site rules and regulations, but it also shows that you understand how ethics can impact the construction industry.
Here’s a look at some job roles you can pursue after passing the CAC Level I Exam.
Certified Construction Manager
The term “certified construction manager” is a broad-spectrum term. Some companies may refer to the construction manager as “VP of operations,” “project executive,” or any other administrative title. Regardless of the label used, the general duties are the same.
One of the most important roles of a construction manager is to oversee multiple projects, allowing project managers to report directly to them. Within the hierarchy of the company, the construction manager answers to supervisors, and the individual project managers who oversee each project will report to the construction manager.
Construction professionals who have obtained a construction management degree and passed the CAC Level I Exam are ideal candidates for this role.
Senior Project Managers
Senior project managers’ responsibilities may vary from one company to the next, mainly depending on the size of the jobs those companies take on.
- If the company specializes in mid-size jobs, the senior project manager may be responsible for multiple jobs.
- If the company performs larger jobs, they likely only have to oversee one project at a time.
In addition to overseeing the overall project plan, senior project managers are typically responsible for subcontracts, purchase orders, and other legal and financial documents.
Most construction companies employ project managers to support execution at the job site. This role is an excellent opportunity for someone who has recently passed the CAC Level I Exam to continue gaining valuable real-world experience managing construction projects.
The responsibilities are similar to a senior project manager, but with a few key differences:
- PMs typically oversee small or midsize projects.
- PMs typically report to senior supervisors if the company has filled that position.
If there are no senior project managers on staff, project managers may report directly to the construction manager.
Construction sites are supported by a host of professionals that ensure the successful completion of each project. Estimators, schedulers, job secretaries, project accountants, and marketing specialists all play vital roles in the equation.
Industry professionals can sit for the CAC exam to validate existing knowledge of construction projects. After passing the exam, you will be ready to pursue higher levels of administrative jobs.
2. CPC Level II Exam
The highest level of professional certification we offer is through the Certified Professional Contractor (CPC) Level II Exam. The CPC Level II exam requires applicants to pass the CPC Level I exam or have equivalent experience and education. (If an applicant has not passed the CPC Level I exam, he or she must prove they are worthy of exemption.)
Additionally, the applicant must provide proof that they have at least four years of Acceptable Professional Experience to build on their previous qualifications for the Level I exam. Additionally, at least two of those four years must have included managing the execution of construction work.
Here’s a look at the career opportunities available to individuals who pass the CPC Level II certification.
Senior superintendents oversee either one large project or a few mid-size projects. Conversely, superintendents either oversee a single mid-size project or multiple small projects. In most cases, there are several superintendents on the same jobsite. Each is responsible for leading a particular part of the construction process.
While safety is everyone’s responsibility, superintendents are some of the most important safety professionals on the job site.
Many companies prefer to hire constructors into project executive roles when they have clearly demonstrated advanced knowledge of construction situations. The CPC exam confirms whether an individual has the necessary knowledge, skills, and experience for these situations.
The CPC certification exam focuses on construction safety issues, ethical concerns, and business aspects such as contracts, subcontracts, and other legally binding documents that are critical aspects of the construction process.
CPCs are well-positioned for higher-up roles at the executive level. Professionals who reach this level are some of the most respected and experienced individuals in the entire construction industry. As you advance in your career, you will be able to strive for positions such as CEO, COO, and other high-ranking C-Suite positions.
At this level, executives make critical decisions that often go beyond construction to maintain business continuity and pursue new business opportunities. You may also be responsible for overseeing financial management and business operations.
C-Suite execs may also work side-by-side with key stakeholders to ensure that projects satisfy time, cost, quality, and safety requirements. Being able to look holistically at how construction projects fit into the overall business model is a critical skill to support growth objectives.
Ready to Pursue Certification?
The construction industry is filled with dedicated professionals, each of whom plays an important role in the construction process. Pursuing construction certifications is a great way to stay ahead of the pack finding a great job.
If you want to build a long-lasting career while improving the company you work for and the construction industry as a whole, find out more about our certifications.
We offer the CAC and CPC exams twice per year during the spring and fall seasons. You can learn more about the qualifications to sit for each exam on our website.
Have questions about registering? Contact us today to discuss registration for the CAC or the CPC exam. We can help you take the appropriate steps to propel your career forward.