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What Is A Construction NVQ? Types, Benefits, and Earnings

Nauman Farooq

Dec 19, 2023

Read time : 10 mins

Table of contents

What is Construction NVQ?
What Is A Construction NVQ Level Equivalent To?
How Much Can I Make With A Construction NVQ?

With the construction sector becoming exceedingly competitive every year, it’s becoming highly imperative that individuals seeking a career in the sector should be upskilling themselves. For this purpose, the construction NVQ qualification is now becoming a must-have requirement.

Employers are always looking for talented individuals to join them, and help them in building amazing buildings and structures. Thus, a construction NVQ qualification opens a lot of opportunities for career growth as well as a variety of training.

But construction NVQ has a lot of different types that require different skill sets to achieve. So, if you are an individual looking to acquire a construction NVQ qualification but are confused about where to get started, then this guide is surely for you.

What is Construction NVQ?

Construction NVQ is a national qualification for construction workers that allows them to demonstrate to their current and future employers their occupational competence.

NVQs allow construction firms to build and retain a skilled and trained workforce.

Moreover, some construction NVQs lead to membership in professional organisations such as Charted Association of Building Engineers (CABE) and the Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB) as well as Black and Gold CSCS Cards.

Types of Construction NVQs

Whether you are a novice or an experienced construction worker, you should be aware of all the types of construction NVQs that you are eligible for. Here’s a breakdown of all the construction NVQs:

1. Level 1 Construction NVQ

The Level 1 Construction NVQ is aimed at inexperienced individuals wishing to join the construction industry. It provides them with a basic understanding of health and safety requirements, responsibilities, and how they can reduce the risks and hazards around them. Also, they understand the line of reporting on a construction site.

The Level 1 Construction NVQ is appropriate for individuals wishing to apply for the Construction Skill Certificate Scheme (CSCS) Green Labourer Card. The age limit for applying for this certification is 16 years and above.

If you want to acquire this certification, then you have to pass the CITB Health, Safety and Environment test (this is required for all types of NVQs). You have to demonstrate that you have acquired sufficient knowledge to be able to work as a non-skilled worker at a construction site.

2. Level 2 Construction NVQ

The Level 2 Construction NVQ is for those individuals who are working as experienced construction workers and want to progress in their construction careers.

Moreover, workers who are aspiring to apply for a CSCS Red Experienced Worker Card or a Blue Skilled Worker Card need to have NVQ level 2 qualifications.

You can become a skilled construction NVQ qualifier in any of the following categories:

  • NVQ Level 2 in Plastering
  • NVQ Level 2 in Wood Occupations
  • NVQ Level 2 in Decorative Finishing and Painting
  • NVQ Level 2 in Trowel Occupations

Remember, this is not an exhaustive list of NVQ Level qualifications.

3. Level 3 Construction NVQ

This qualification is for those individuals who have worked as skilled construction workers for some time and have also acquired supervisory experience. With a level 3 construction NVQ, you can apply for a CSCS Gold Supervisory Card or an Advanced Craft Card.

4. Level 4 Construction NVQ

The level 4 construction NVQ can help individuals with supervisory experience to achieve a diploma in construction site supervision. Also, with a pre-existing diploma in construction management, individuals with a level 4 construction NVQ can apply for a CSCS Black Manager Card.

5. Level 5 Construction NVQ

A level 5 construction NVQ is for individuals looking to become construction site managers. You can do this NVQ via an On-site Assessment (OSAT) or an Experienced Worker Practical Assessment (EWPA). Both of these assessments will help you in the achievement of a full NVQ and are also quicker and cheaper than a traditional NVQ.

6. Level 6 Construction NVQ

If you hold a level 6 construction NVQ and also have construction site management experience, then you can apply for a CSCS Black Manager Card. Moreover, with a level 6 NVQ, you can work as a construction contracts manager.

7. Level 7 Construction NVQ

A level 7 construction NVQ can help you with acquiring a Black CSCS Manager’s Card and a White CSCS Card, so you can join the ranks of the senior management of a construction site.

What Is A Construction NVQ Level Equivalent To?

Most of the construction NVQs are national certificates, while higher-level NVQs are equivalent to a Higher National Diploma (HND) or a bachelor’s degree. This means that if you acquire an NVQ, then you are considered to be on equal footing with those who have alternative certificates.

Construction NVQs

Qualification Category

Level 1

National Certificate

Level 2,3,4

National Certificate

Level 5

National Diploma

Level 6

Higher National Diploma

Level 7

Bachelor’s Degree

Benefits Of A Construction NVQ

Construction NVQs have a number of benefits that can help you in creating a progressive career in the construction industry.

  • Nationally Recognised Qualification

The National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) is a nationally recognised qualification. It indicates that you have the required knowledge of industry standards and best practices, and therefore you can work on any construction site. This qualification is highly popular, which helps you in advancing your career.

  • Career Progression

A construction NVQ can unlock a lot of career opportunities. It can help you in becoming more proficient in the skill of your choosing. Moreover, a construction NVQ can familiarise you with both the theory and the functional aspects of your role, allowing you to increase your job prospects.

For example, if you are a site supervisor and have just completed your level 6 or 7 construction NVQ, then you can showcase to your employer that you are well-equipped and ready for a managerial role.

  • Improved Employee Benefits

By obtaining higher-level construction NVQs, you can improve your career prospects and get jobs with higher salaries. Moreover, you can have many employee benefits such as medical insurance, bonuses, and increased Paid Time Off (PTO)..

  • Benefits for Employers

Employers who allow their employees to pursue construction NVQs can reap several benefits. Firstly, they can build a highly-skilled and qualified workforce that is well-versed in all the safety and health requirements. This will make their construction sites more safe and secure.

Secondly, the new skills acquired by their employees will help them to become more productive, efficient, and motivated.

  • Variety of Training

Construction NVQs are available for a number of different functions, such as dry lifting, forklifts, cranes, plastering, and other specialised functions.

Also, with the choice of NVQs available, employees can get qualified in one that is tailored to their job role or gain expertise in new areas.

How Much Can I Make With A Construction NVQ?

Construction NVQs can open a lot of new job prospects, thus, allowing you to earn higher salaries. Here’s a list of what each level of construction NVQ pays.

Construction NVQ Levels

Average Salary 

Level 1 Construction NVQ


Level 2 Construction NVQ 


Level 3 Construction NVQ


Level 4 Construction NVQ


Level 5 Construction NVQ


Level 6 Construction NVQ


Level 7 Construction NVQ


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is an NVQ in construction?

An NVQ in construction serves as a recognised qualification, demonstrating your occupational proficiency to both present and prospective employers. Moreover, employers find value in NVQs as they aid in cultivating and retaining a capable and well-trained workforce.

What is the highest construction NVQ qualification?

The level 7 construction NVQ is the highest qualification that you can achieve in the National Vocational Qualification scheme.

What NVQ level is construction management?

Construction management typically falls under NVQ Level 6, indicating a higher level of expertise and responsibility within the construction industry.


Construction NVQs are a great way to give your career a steady trajectory. With a qualification that is recognised nationally, better employment benefits, and a variety of career pathways available, NVQ should be the right choice for you to pursue.

With a high-level construction NVQ, you can join the senior management of construction sites and play an important part in building the finest wonders of engineering and construction.