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Concrete Finisher

Concrete finishers place and finish concrete floors, driveways, sidewalks, curbs, bridge decks and other concrete structures.

  • Avg. Salary $57,562.00
  • Avg. Wage $29.93
  • Minimum Education Apprenticeship
  • Outlook below avg
  • Employed 2,400
  • In Demand Medium
Also Known As

Cement Finisher, Construction Tradesperson, Mason

NOC Codes

In Canada, the federal government groups and organizes occupations based on a National Occupational Classification (NOC) system. This alis occupation may not reflect the entire NOC group it is part of. Data for the NOC group can apply across multiple occupations.

The NOC system is updated every 5 years to reflect changes in the labour market. Government forms and labour market data may group and refer to an occupation differently, depending on the system used. Here is how this occupation has been classified over time:

  • 2006 NOC: Concrete Finishers (7282) 
  • 2006 NOC-S: Concrete Finishers (H132) 
  • 2011 NOC: Concrete finishers (7282) 
Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

Average Wage
  • Certification Provincially Regulated
  • Strength Required Lift over 20 kg
Interest Codes
The Concrete Finisher is part of the following larger National Occupational Classification (NOC).
Concrete Finishers

Interest in operating hand tools, power tools and power vibrators to compact concrete


Interest in copying information to fill hollows and remove high spots to smooth freshly poured concrete; and in applying hardening and sealing compounds to cure concrete surfaces


Interest in repairing, resurfacing and replacing worn and damaged sections of floors, walls, roads and other concrete structures

Reading Interest Codes
A Quick Guide

The interest code helps you figure out if you’d like to work in a particular occupation. 
It’s based on the Canadian Work Preference Inventory (CWPI), which measures 5 occupational interests: Directive, Innovative, Methodical, Objective and Social.

Each set of 3 interest codes is listed in order of importance.

A code in capital letters means it’s a strong fit for the occupation.

A code in all lowercase letters means the fit is weaker.

Learn More

Updated Dec 19, 2016

In general, concrete finishers:

  • place wet concrete into forms and spread it to a specified depth
  • level and smooth the surface of the concrete, round the edges and make joints or grooves to help control cracking on the surface 
  • apply architectural, exposed, patterned, stamped, broomed or smooth finishes
  • use dry pack grouting and epoxy materials as needed and ensure concrete cures perfectly
  • repair, waterproof and restore concrete surfaces.

Although machines are used to trowel large areas such as warehouses and arena floors, hand trowelling is still required for hard to reach spots in corners, edges, and around pipes. The surface may be:

  • trowelled to a smooth finish
  • brushed to create a coarse, nonskid finish
  • embedded with gravel chips for an exposed aggregate finish
  • patterned or stamped to apply decorative surface
  • trowelled with a dye to create a coloured surface.
Working Conditions
Updated Dec 19, 2016

Concrete finishers work both outdoors and indoors at tasks that are fast paced and strenuous. Travel may be required to get to construction sites.

Outdoor work can be affected by adverse weather conditions. There is less work available in the winter and summer hours often are longer than the standard 40 hour week. Overtime is sometimes required because concrete finishers cannot leave a project in the middle and return to it the next day.

There is some risk of injury from working on uneven footing and from other construction site hazards. The work involves considerable bending, stooping and kneeling, and may involve moving items that weigh over 25 kilograms.

  • Strength Required Lift over 20 kg
Skills & Abilities
Updated Dec 19, 2016

Concrete finishers need the following characteristics:

  • the physical strength and stamina required to shovel and move wet concrete
  • the ability to get along well with other workers.

They should take pride in seeing the results of their work, and enjoy physical exercise and working with their hands.

Educational Requirements
Updated Dec 19, 2016

To work in Alberta, a concrete finisher must be ONE of the following:

  • a registered apprentice
  • an Alberta-certified journeyperson
  • someone who holds a recognized related trade certificate  
  • someone who works for an employer who is satisfied that the worker has the skills and knowledge expected of certified journeyperson
  • self-employed.

To register with Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training, apprentices must:

  • have an Alberta high school transcript with at least English Language Arts 10-2 and Math 10-3, or equivalent, or a pass mark in all 5 GED tests, or pass an entrance exam.
  • find a suitable employer who is willing to hire and train an apprentice. Most employers prefer to hire high school graduates.      

The term of apprenticeship is three years (three 12 month periods) that include a minimum of:

  • 1,200 hours of on-the-job training and four weeks of technical training in the each of the first two years
  • 1,200 hours of on-the-job training in the third year.

High school students can earn credits toward apprenticeship training and a high school diploma at the same time through the Registered Apprenticeship Program (RAP).

Applicants who have related training or work experience may be eligible for credit or certification.

Concrete finisher apprentices may take the interprovincial exam in the final period of their apprenticeship training to earn a Red Seal (certification recognized in most parts of Canada).

Technical training is arranged by Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training and is currently offered by the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT) in Calgary.

For more information, visit the Technical Training Centre on the Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training website.

Related Education

The following schools offer programs or courses that are related to this occupation but are not required to enter the field.

Apprenticeship Trades

For a broad list of programs and courses that may be related to this occupation try searching using keywords.

Certification Requirements
Updated Dec 19, 2016

Concrete Finisher

Concrete finishers place and finish concrete floors, driveways, sidewalks, curbs, bridge decks and other concrete structures. For more information, see the Trades and Occupations section of Alberta's Tradesecrets website.


Under Alberta's Apprenticeship and Industry Training Act and Concrete Finisher Trade Regulation, you do not have to be certified if you are self-employed or work for an employer who is satisfied that you have the skills and knowledge expected of a journeyperson certified by Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training. To learn the trade, you must become a registered apprentice.

What You Need

The term of apprenticeship for apprentice concrete finishers in Alberta is three years (three 12 month periods) that include 1,200 hours of on-the-job training in each period and four weeks of technical training in the first and second years. Apprentices must find suitable employers who are willing to hire and train apprentices, and successfully complete technical training examinations.

Working in Alberta

Concrete finishers trained in other provinces and territories can work in Alberta if they hold a certificate or license recognized by the Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training Board or have the skills and knowledge expected of a journeyperson certified in Alberta. For more information, see the Recognized Trade Certificates page of the Tradesecrets website.

Contact Details

Any of the Apprenticeship and Industry Training Client Service Offices located throughout Alberta. For a list of office locations and telephone numbers, click on "Contact Us" on the home page of the Tradesecrets website (

This is an Apprenticeship trade. For full details, see the related certification profile

Employment & Advancement
Updated Dec 19, 2016

Most concrete finishers are employed by general contractors involved in building highways, bridges and large buildings, and by contractors who do only concrete work. A few concrete finishers are self-employed, contracting their services for smaller projects such as patios, sidewalks and driveways. Employment prospects for concrete finishers vary with the seasons and with economic conditions.

Experienced concrete finishers may specialize in a particular type of work, advance to supervisory positions or become contract estimators. Alberta certified journeyperson concrete finishers who have the supervisory or management skills required by industry may apply for an Achievement in Business Competencies Blue Seal by contacting Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training.

In Alberta, 95% of people employed as concrete finishers work in the following industries:

The employment outlook in this occupation will be influenced by a wide variety of factors including:

  • time of year (for seasonal jobs)
  • trends and events affecting overall employment (especially in the industries listed above)
  • location in Alberta
  • employment turnover (work opportunities generated by people leaving existing positions)
  • occupational growth (work opportunities resulting from the creation of new positions that never existed before)
  • size of the occupation.

Over 2,500 Albertans are employed in the Other elemental service occupations occupational group. This group is expected to have a below-average annual growth of 0.1% from 2016 to 2020. As a result, 3 new positions are forecast to be created each year, in addition to job openings created by employment turnover. 

Employment turnover is expected to increase as members of the baby boom generation retire over the next few years.

Wage & Salary
Updated Dec 19, 2016

Journeyperson wage rates vary but generally range from $20 to $35 an hour plus benefits (2014 estimates). Apprentice concrete finishers are paid at least 65% of the journeyperson wage rate in their place of employment in the first year, 75% in the second and 85% in the third.

Concrete finishers

Survey Methodology

Survey Analysis

Overall Wage Details
Average Wage
Average Salary
Hours Per Week

Hourly Wage
For full-time and part-time employees
  • Low
  • High
  • Average
  • Median
Wages* Low (5th percentile) High (95th percentile) Average Median
Starting $18.00 $30.50 $25.65 $28.00
Overall $21.50 $34.78 $29.93 $32.00
Top $25.00 $38.00 $33.18 $36.00

Swipe left and right to view all data. Scroll left and right to view all data.

* All wage estimates are hourly except where otherwise indicated. Wages and salaries do not include overtime hours, tips, benefits, profit shares, bonuses (unrelated to production) and other forms of compensation.

C: Lower Reliability
Data Reliability Code Definition

Lower Reliability, represents a CV of between 15.01% and 33.00% and/or if fewer than 20 survey observations and/or if survey observations represent less than 33% of all estimated employment for the occupation.

Industry Information

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years


Recruiting Employers that Experienced Hiring Difficulties


Employers with Unfilled Vacancies of over 4 Months


Vacancy Rate

Related High School Subjects
  • Trades, Manufacturing and Transportation
    • Construction
Related Post-Secondary Field of Study
  • Trades, Industrial and Related Training
Other Sources of Information
Updated Dec 19, 2016

Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training website:

BuildForce Canada website:

Calgary Construction Association website:


For more information on career planning, education and jobs call the Alberta Supports Contact Centre toll-free at 1-877-644-9992 or 780-644-9992 in Edmonton, or visit an Alberta Works Centre near you.

Updated Mar 29, 2015. The information contained in this profile is current as of the dates shown. Salary, employment outlook and educational program information may change without notice. It is advised that you confirm this information before making any career decisions.

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