The general foreman is just one of many construction leadership jobs. Whether you’re interested in taking advantage of the labor shortage to enter the construction industry or you’re a construction recruiter, you will want to learn more about general foremen, including their salary and responsibilities.

General Foreman Roles and Responsibilities

General foremen or construction foremen coordinate the operations at construction sites and oversee the workers. This coordination relies on plans and priorities.

As part of that role, construction foremen create work schedules and keep track of crews. This includes assigning daily tasks to various workers on the site. As part of that, general foremen help ensure the project stays on schedule and within its budget.

General foremen also have a role in overcoming the skilled labor crisis, as they help train and supervise the workers. This role also involves ensuring that there are enough workers on-site, as well as enough materials.

General foremen also take care of supervising equipment and machinery, following quality standards and safety precautions, and resolving issues.

Managing the equipment might mean planning what machinery the team will need to ensure it is on-site on time. Another example is planning carefully to make the most of the equipment while on-site to minimize costs.

They work closely with construction managers, engineers, and other good construction leadership, reporting to those roles. General foremen also work with technical staff, such as the design and engineering teams. They also work closely with third parties, including suppliers and clients.

Sometimes, a construction foreman will have a specialized title. For example, there are operations, public works, pipeline construction, construction civil, and electrical foremen.

General Foreman Skills

Because of the importance of their responsibilities, general foremen need to have a fair amount of construction experience.

They must know how to perform the basic construction tasks and be familiar with more advanced procedures. These include guidelines for equipment and OSHA.

Construction foremen also need to understand hydraulic and electric systems. They must read and understand blueprints, plans, and drawings.

As this is a leadership role, they also need organizational and leadership skills. Other essential skills include problem-solving abilities and math skills.

General foremen do not typically need a college education. They do, however, require either a high school diploma or have a certification as a carpenter, electrician, or in another skilled trade.

General Foreman Salary

As with any other role, the construction salary for a general foreman varies based on the job and location. The national average wage is about $55,000 per year or $27 an hour. It can typically range from $29,000 to $90,000 a year.

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