Career Information Hotline

Toll Free 1-800-661-3753

Edmonton 780-422-4266

Guest Account Sign In Sign Up

Funeral Director

Funeral directors take charge of caring for the remains of people who have died, help families plan funeral services, and co-ordinate and manage arrangements for services.

  • Avg. Salary $62,376.00
  • Avg. Wage $29.95
  • Minimum Education 1 year post-secondary
  • Outlook N/A
Also Known As

Mortician, Undertaker

NOC & Interest Codes
The Funeral Director is part of the following larger National Occupational Classification (NOC).
Funeral Directors
NOC code: 6272.1
DIRECTIVE

Interest in co-ordinating information to manage funeral home operations; and in hiring and supervising embalmers, funeral home attendants and other staff

SOCIAL

Interest in consulting with families regarding the nature of the funeral service, disposition of the remains and funeral costs, and to inform survivors of benefits for which they may be eligible

METHODICAL

Interest in maintaining financial records; may perform the same duties as embalmers

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

Duties
Updated Mar 17, 2016

Funeral directors co-ordinate the work involved in bringing the deceased to the funeral home and making all the necessary arrangements for a funeral service. In general, they:

  • provide information about funeral service options, products and merchandise
  • maintain a casket display area
  • prepare funeral service contracts
  • arrange funeral services according to the social or religious practices of the people involved
  • help bereaved families with immediate legal, social and emotional concerns
  • arrange for the time and place of funerals
  • contact religious leaders
  • file death certificates, obtain burial permits, contact the cemetery
  • prepare obituary notices for newspapers
  • arrange transportation for mourners, pallbearers and religious leaders 
  • oversee the conduct of funeral services.
Working Conditions
Updated Mar 17, 2016

Funeral directors sometimes work long, irregular hours that may include many evenings and weekends. They work both indoors and outdoors regardless of weather conditions.

Heavy lifting over 20 kilograms is required.

  • Strength Required Lift up to 20 kg
Skills & Abilities
Updated Mar 17, 2016

Since they work in an atmosphere of grief and bereavement, funeral directors need the following characteristics:

  • maturity
  • emotional stability
  • compassion
  • tact
  • sensitivity to the needs of the people they serve.

They should enjoy supervising people and co-ordinating information, consulting with families and having clear rules and organized methods to guide their activities.

Educational Requirements
Updated Mar 17, 2016

Funeral directors need good business, organizational, interpersonal and communication skills. Those considering this occupation should discuss their education options with practicing funeral directors before enrolling in a program.


Related Education

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

Mount Royal University

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

Certification Requirements
Updated Mar 17, 2016

Funeral Service Occupations

Funeral directors take charge of caring for the remains of people who have died, help families plan funeral services, and co-ordinate and manage arrangements for services. Embalmers prepare the remains for public visitation and burial. Business managers manage funeral service businesses. Pre-need salespersons draw up and sign pre-need funeral service contracts on behalf of the business.

Legislation

Under Alberta's Funeral Services Act and General Regulation, funeral directors, embalmers, business managers and pre-need salespersons must be licensed through the Alberta Funeral Services Regulatory Board (AFSRB). A licence is not required to work as a funeral attendant under the supervision of a licensed embalmer or funeral director.

What You Need

Applicants for licensing must pass the Alberta Funeral Services Regulatory examination with a mark of at least 65%. Graduates of training programs offered in other provinces also must satisfy experience requirements and be sponsored by an Alberta funeral service. For official, detailed information about registration requirements, visit the AFSRB website or contact the AFSRB.

Working in Alberta

Funeral directors, embalmers and pre-need salespersons who are licensed by and in good standing with a regulatory organization elsewhere in Canada may be eligible for licensing in Alberta if licensed practitioners in the two jurisdictions have similar responsibilities and competencies. For more information, see What if I am already certified in another province or territory? and the Alberta regulatory authority (below).

Contact Details

Alberta Funeral Services Regulatory Board
11810 Kingsway Avenue
Edmonton, Alberta
Canada  T5G 0X5
Phone number: 780-452-6130
Toll-free phone number: 1-800-563-4652
Fax number: 780-452-6085
Website: www.afsrb.ab.ca

Employment & Advancement
Updated Mar 17, 2016

Funeral directors work in funeral homes located throughout the province. The Alberta Funeral Service Association helps people interested in training as funeral directors to find potential employers. Re-location to a smaller, rural community may be required.

Self-employment is an option that requires a large capital investment to purchase or establish a well furnished funeral home.

Funeral directors may use their business skills to transfer into related occupations. Many funeral directors are licensed embalmers as well.

Funeral directors are part of the larger 2011 National Occupational Classification 6346: Funeral Directors and Embalmers. In Alberta, most people employed in this classification work in the Other Services (PDF) industry.

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

  • trends and events affecting overall employment (especially in the Repair, Personal, Religious and Other Service industry)
  • 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.

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

Wage & Salary
Updated Mar 17, 2016

Funeral directors' earnings vary depending on location and ownership of the funeral home.

Funeral directors are part of the larger 2011 National Occupational Classification 6346: Funeral directors and embalmers. 

According to the 2015 Alberta Wage and Salary Survey, Albertans in the Funeral directors and embalmers occupational group earned on average from $23.30 to $37.00 an hour. The overall average wage was $29.95 an hour. For more information, see the Funeral directors and embalmers wage profile.

Related High School Subjects
  • Science
    • Biology
    • Chemistry
  • Business, Administration, Finance and IT
    • Management and Marketing
Related Post-Secondary Field of Study
  • Personal and Food Services
Other Sources of Information
Updated Mar 17, 2016

Alberta Funeral Service Association (AFSA) website: www.afsa.ca

Alberta Funeral Services Regulatory Board (AFSRB) website: www.afsrb.ab.ca

For more information on career planning, education and jobs, visit the Alberta Learning Information Service (ALIS) website, call the Alberta Career Information Hotline toll-free at 1-800-661-3753 or 780-422-4266 in Edmonton, or visit an Alberta Works Centre near you.

Updated Mar 09, 2016. 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.

Was this page useful?
Top