What does a Laborer do?

As a Laborer you provide physical labor on a construction site. Under direct supervision, you will be expected to safely operate machinery and be responsible for its maintenance and upkeep. You will assist skilled trades as needed and load and unload deliveries to the work site. In addition, you will maintain a safe job site by removing any hazards.

You could be the ideal candidate if you have a GED or H.S. diploma and some experience as a laborer able to operate a variety of tools and machinery and can lift over 50 pounds and do repetitive movements with little break in between. You must be willing to work in all types of weather including extreme conditions and can pass a drug screen before an offer an be extended.

What responsibilities are common for Laborer jobs?
  • Be at the job site on time
  • Provide assistance on the site as needed
  • Perform care and maintenance of assigned tools
  • Load and unload materials
  • Remove hazards from the job site
  • Assemble scaffolding
  • Perform physical labor on construction sites
  • Clean job sites
What are the typical qualifications for Laborer jobs?
  • 0-2 years of experience as a laborer
  • Must be able to lift 50+ pounds
  • Ability to pass a drug screen
  • Able to do repetitive movements _ bend, lift, in one shift with little break in between
  • Willingness to work a varied schedule each week
  • Able to work in all types of weather include extreme conditions
  • Operate a variety of tools and machinery
  • Must be dependable
  • Must have reliable transportation
EducationBachelor's Degree
Work/Life Balance
3.3 ★
Total Pay--
Career Opportunity
3.2 ★
Avg. Experience8+ years

How much does a Laborer make near United States?

$38,674 /yr
Total Pay

Base Pay


Additional Pay


 / yr
Most Likely Range
Possible Range
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Laborer Career Path

Learn how to become a Laborer, what skills and education you need to succeed, and what level of pay to expect at each step on your career path.

Laborer III
Lead Laborer

Years of Experience Distribution

0 - 1
2 - 4
5 - 7
Not including years spent in education and/or training

Laborer Insights

Read what Laborer professionals have to say about their job experiences and view top companies for this career.
JE Dunn ConstructionJE Dunn Construction
Field Personnel
Mar 16, 2022

“Pay was good but not worth what you had to go through to get it!”

Alliance Nationwide ExpositionAlliance Nationwide Exposition
Operations Laborer
Aug 29, 2023

“sometimes work long hours but not really a negative when you want to work there with an amazing group of people”

Service King CollisionService King Collision
Paint Prepper
May 27, 2023

“i worked 20hrs somedays and made 50k but i was 18 so it was good money then”

Ensign Energy ServicesEnsign Energy Services
May 14, 2023

“Work life balance but that’s the same for any camp job and better than others”

ITS ConGlobalITS ConGlobal
General Laborer
Apr 21, 2023

“It was 19 dollars an hour starting pay which was good but not worth it.”

Delphinus EngineeringDelphinus Engineering
General Laborer
Mar 16, 2022

“Decent opportunities to learn a trade not the best option to learn a trade but possible.”

Homecare Worker
Oct 22, 2022

“It is a great to work around the people and the way the stuff are trained.”

General Laborer
Mar 20, 2023

“Felt like the training was not adequete and left me feeling unequipped to handle situations on my own.”

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Laborer Interviews

Frequently asked questions about the role and responsibilities of laborers

Depending on the industry, during the workday, a laborer may operate machinery, remove debris, build structures, perform landscaping work, use specialized equipment, lay asphalt or concrete, prepare surfaces for building, move or stack items, load and unload transport vessels, and many other physical tasks.

Yes, laborers are always needed. Nearly every industry relies on some form of labor to make it run, whether it's in building its workspace, maintenance, repair and upkeep, landscaping, or moving its products. It's relatively easy to become a laborer because anyone with physical stamina and willingness to work hard can move into this field.

Though the starting salary for a laborer is on the lower end, at around $33,052 a year, it's possible to advance and become a lead laborer or a supervisor with experience. The higher end of the salary range is around $45,384 a year in the United States.

Yes, working as a laborer is often challenging and physically demanding. Laborers often work outdoors in a variety of weather conditions, including extreme heat and cold. Depending on the work, they may be required to lift heavy things, climb ladders, or carry things overhead. Laborers may work on shifts, including early morning hours or overnight.

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Laborer Jobs