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Concrete Floor Finisher: Job Description, Duties and Outlook

Learn about the education and preparation needed to become a concrete floor finisher. Get a quick view of the requirements as well as details about training, job duties and job growth potential to find out if this is the career for you.

Concrete floor finishers are masons who specialize in pouring concrete flooring for buildings and provide decorative designs to add an aesthetic appeal. While no postsecondary education is required, many learn this trade through general construction work and can pursue an associate's degree in masonry. The job market for concrete finishers is expected to grow at a faster than average clip from 2014-2024.

Essential Information

Concrete floor finishers set concrete flooring in homes, offices, malls, driveways and patios. They often work for contractors who provide decorative flooring services. Most floor finishers learn the trade through on-the-job training or union apprenticeship programs that can take several years to complete. This job is often physically strenuous, and the work can be seasonal. Those who wish to advance in the field may enroll in certificate and associate degree programs in construction or masonry. They can also earn professional certification.

Required Education On-the-job training or apprenticeship program; certificate or associate's degree for advancement
Projected Job Growth (2014-2024)* 13% for cement masons and concrete finishers
Median Salary (2015)* $37,740 for cement masons and concrete finishers

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

Concrete Floor Finisher Job Description

Concrete floor finishers lay concrete and then add designs or color to the flooring. They use shovels and hand tools to place, spread, level and polish concrete surfaces. They use edgers and hand trowels to ensure cracks do not develop in the concrete.

Working with concrete is a strenuous job that requires excessive bending and kneeling. Workers often work outside in all types of weather and endure dusty construction sites. Work hours may be seasonal or may increase suddenly depending on deadlines for construction jobs.

Training

Many floor finishers receive on-the-job training and begin their trade as general workers on construction sites. Flooring workers often join apprenticeship programs through unions and trade associations. Some apprenticeships may last up to four years, but other programs are completed when competency is demonstrated.

Job Duties of Concrete Floor Finishers

Floor finishers often decorate floors and pavements with patterns, stains and dyes. They may use stamping tools to create textured shapes in concrete surfaces. They also color concrete with chemical stains, pigmented tints or dyes. Finishers create joint patterns by using a saw to design shapes in concrete.

Terrazzo floor finishers embed marble, plastic, glass or other stone chips in concrete. Once the chips are set, finishers wash, brush and seal the flooring. They use a terrazzo grinder to polish the flooring.

Concrete Floor Finisher Job Outlook

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that work for cement masons and concrete finishers was expected to grow by 13% between 2014 and 2024, which is much faster than average. The BLS further predicted that masons with additional education and training might have an advantage in obtaining work in the field. In 2015, the BLS reported an average wage of $20.23 for these workers.

Additional Education

Students may earn an associate degree or a masonry specialization certificate at community colleges and trade schools. Coursework may include:

  • Installation
  • Surveying
  • Framing
  • Reading blueprints
  • Understanding building codes
  • Project management

Certification

Concrete floor finishers may advance to become construction site supervisors or private contractors through experience, certification and additional training. The National Concrete Masonry Association offers certification programs that provide training in sales, production, installation, quality control and energy conservation to masons. When coursework is completed, masons are required to pass written and performance examinations.

Concrete floor finishers are the contract masons who, as their name implies, work with concrete to lay floors in homes and offices and provide aesthetic flourishes to make them visually appealing. Those in this career typically learned the trade through working on construction sites and union apprenticeships, but those interested in advancement can take associate degree programs in masonry. Concrete floor finishers may also become private contractors and supervisors through the certification program offered by the National Concrete Masonry Association.


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