Planner Job Description

over 4 years ago by Daniel Stargatt
Planner job description

Thinking about a career in Planning?

If you already know everything you need to know and want to look at what opportunities are available then check out all of our Planning jobs available. 

If you're looking for another role within the construction industry you can view all of our current construction jobs and simply apply with your CV or LinkedIn profile.

If you’re considering a career in Planning, an experienced planning professional looking for your next role or an employer in search of a skilled Planner to join your team – we’ve answered a few key questions...

What is a Planner?

A Planner is a construction professional who is concerned with developing time plans on construction projects to ensuring that the project is completed safely, on time and within budget.

A site based Planner will usually report in to either the Project Manager or Project Director for project delivery. Departmentally a Planner will report in to a Pre-Construction Director or Planning Manager if the company working on the project has a dedicated planning department.

Due to planning being considered as one of the most important professions within construction, on top of planners being hugely in demand, salaries can be very attractive as well as very good career development opportunities.  Freelance Planners are constantly in demand and demand very good rates.

What are the typical duties and activities of a Planner?

From employer to employer the job description of a Planner will vary, however typical duties and activities undertaken include:

  • Create, maintain, review and administer construction schedules and plans
  • Liaising with managers and engineers to discuss the progress of the project and address any issues that arise
  • Liaise with external contractors and suppliers to organize the phases of the construction development
  • Keep the client team up to date on progress to present to the client
  • Present information for internal meetings on the project
  • Problem solving
  • Produce tender plans to support bids

A typical working week for a planner would be around 40-45hrs per week, however you would be required to work longer if there is a deadline fast approaching.

What are the key skills required to be a Planner?

A Planner is an important part of any construction team and to be successful in the role, a broad range of key skills are required, including:

  • Strong communication including writing reports and presenting
  • Understanding engineering principles
  • Time management and planning
  • Organisation
  • Methodological approach
  • High Attention to detail
  • Excellent IT skills and relevant knowledge of Planning software including MS Project, Asta PowerProject and Primavera P6
  • Ability to remain calm under pressure
  • Strong Problem solving
  • Budget and financial management
  • Leadership
  • Work as part of a team and individually
  • A Site Management background is beneficial

Which qualifications are needed and what are the training options for Planners?

Although there is no formal qualification for planning, to pursue a career within planning, a bachelor’s degree in an engineering related field, including building management, construction engineering, building studies, surveying and civil engineering will help, however this isn’t the only route of entry.

If you graduated from university with an unrelated degree you can join the Chartered Institute of Building’s (CIOB) Diploma programme. Here you are able to learn the appropriate skills to become a planner within construction.

You can also move in to a more senior planning position by spending several years training in the construction industry, as well as receiving sponsorship from your employer to study, normally you would be required to sign a contract of employment stating you would stay for a minimum period of time after you have finished your studies.

Who employs Planners?

A wide range of businesses employ Planners across the UK construction industry and due to the growth the construction industry has experienced, demand is extremely high for skilled Planners.

Within the time line of a project a planner could work directly for the client, a consultancy on behalf of the client but most Planners work for the main contractor tasked with completing the project.  Some Planners work for specialist subcontractors.

When considering a potential employer the size of company should be taken in to account. The benefit of working with a smaller company can be the exposure to more responsibility in a shorter space of time.

In contrast, the advantage of working in a larger company tends to offer a greater opportunity to work on more high profile projects as well as a more structured and clear route for career progression.

What is the average salary and benefits package for Panners?

Due to there being many different planning roles with in the construction industry, salaries can vary greatly, however there are a few clear trends that show where the highest salaries can be achieved.

Starting salaries permanent employees are typically in the range of £30,000-£40,000. With experience, in roles such as Senior Planner and Planning Manager salaries can see a large increase. Planning Directors salaries can reach up to £100,000+.

In most cases a car or car allowance will be given on top of the salary as part of a package, which can also include Pension scheme and private health care.

Location plays a big roll in your salary; in certain parts of the UK you can earn a lot more than you would in other parts of the county. The obvious is that London offers the highest salaries however we have seen higher salaries across the whole of the UK.

For more information on salaries, check out our salary survey.

Looking to develop your career in Planning?

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If you are an employer with a planning role to fill, simply get in touch today to discuss your requirements.

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