What's involved - View plant mechanic apprentice Luke's video

A plant mechanic looks after the machinery found on a construction site, ensuring that everything is running properly and making repairs where necessary. They are crucial to construction projects as machinery that isn't working can hold up jobs and cost companies thousands of pounds.

The work can either be done in a workshop or on site depending on the requirements of the repairs. It means plant mechanics need to be constantly aware of health and safety issues.

Skills required

A technical mind is essential and you'll need to enjoy working with machines. Good communication skills are also important as you will be working with clients and operators.

You'll need a reasonable level of fitness and be able to work alone without direct supervision.

Qualifications required

There are no formal requirements although it would help to have Maths and English or Welsh GCSE Grades A-C. (Applications from students with the Foundation or Intermediate Welsh Baccalaureate are also welcomed).

Salary ranges

(This is a guide to the average salary a fully qualified and experienced person might expect to get.)

£15,000 - £25,000

Progression routes

There are a wide range of opportunities for plant mechanics to work on a construction site or workshop.

Find out waht a real apprentice thinks:

This apprenticeship will enable progression to:

  • Advanced Apprenticeship (Level 3) in Plant Maintenance.

After gaining work experience there are opportunities to progress into occupational work supervision, management or technical support areas.

Find out what a real apprentice thinks:

Which company do you work for?

I work for my Dad's company, Safe T Reach Access Platforms. We work in the hiring, sales and servicing of mobile elevated work platforms, machines known in the trade as scissor lifts and cherry pickers, which tradespeople can use to work at height safely.

What do you do day-to-day?

My daily job consists of various things. I do a bit of lorry driving, breakdowns and repairs of our machines. We also look after other people's machines and tests and inspections as well.

What's the coolest thing you've done so far?

The best thing I've done here is strip down a V8 Cummins engine to a bare shell, take all the components out of it, measure it up, repair any that were damaged and put it back together again, fire it up and made sure it worked. Which it did!

What would you say to anyone who wanted to try this?

I would say that this is the best place you can come and learn if you want to get in to this sort of trade. It's hands-on. It's theory work. It's the best place in the country. All the kit gets donated here either brand new or in very good condition. The tutors have all been in the trade so you can't go wrong with the training.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

In ten years time, hopefully if everything goes to plan, I should be running my family's company, hopefully with Dad taking a back seat, maybe having a few people underneath me.