What Is a Joiner?


You Will Learn.

  • What a Joiner is. 
  • What the responsibilities of a Joiner are.
  • What qualifications a Joiner needs.
  • Average salary of a Joiner.
  • What skills a Joiner needs.  
  • Who employs a Joiner.
  • Where the latest Joiner jobs are and how to apply for them.
A Carpenter using a hand tool

What Is a Joiner?

A Joiner is a skilled tradesperson who creates important structures primarily out of timber to ensure the safety and stability of a building. These structures include creating elements such as doors, windows, staircases and general woodwork such as furniture and skirting boards. 

It’s important that a Joiner is not only able to create these structures, but also able to fit them in their correct locations. However, traditionally, a Joiner is based in a workshop where they create structures and then a Carpenter will construct these building elements on-site. 

A Joiner's responsibilities also include cutting and shaping wood, repairing and maintaining structures and snagging work. 

What Are the Responsibilities of a Joiner?

While working as a Joiner, you will be required to: 

  • Create integral building structures.
  • Cut wood either by hand or using machinery. 
  • Fit structures into place on site.
  • Repair and maintain structural elements of buildings.
  • Work effectively with other tradespeople on important building projects. 
  • Communicate efficiently with project managers and clients.
  • Conduct site surveys.
  • Produce progress updates for Project and Senior Managers. 
  • Estimate the materials required to complete a job. 
  • Conduct quality checks to ensure the safety of completed work. 
  • Complete responsive repairs of council properties and void properties. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Whilst there are no formal qualifications required for a career in joinery, most employers value experience in woodwork or a similar field of work. However, more recently some employers have preferred to hire Joiners who are NVQ qualified. 

A popular entry into joinery is to complete an apprenticeship or relevant course as this will equip you with the practical skills needed on the job. 

An intermediate or advanced apprenticeship in carpentry or joinery will teach you the relevant skills required to work as a Joiner. An apprenticeship is a great way to hone in on your practical skills whilst learning on the job. 

The options to train as either a Site Carpenter or an Architectural Joiner are available and both avenues will require spending time with a training provider or studying at college. 

An alternative apprenticeship to explore is an intermediate apprenticeship, training to be a Wood Product Manufacturing Operative.

It would be wise to explore all apprenticeship opportunities before deciding which avenue you’d like to pursue. Through thorough research, you’ll  be fully informed on the skills and experience which they will equip you with before searching for your first full time role. 

The average salary for a Joiner in the UK is around £24,000 per year. Due to the higher cost of living in the city, Joiners in London can expect to earn £29,000 per year.

However, this can vary depending on factors such as the region of the UK, the level of experience, and the type of joinery work being done.

Some Joiners who specialise in certain types of woodworking, such as high-end cabinetry or furniture making, may be able to earn higher salaries due to the specialised nature of their work.

The most common organisations to employ a Joiner are councils, housing associations, sub-contractors and often, Joiners will be self-employed. 

Private clients and construction companies will also employ a Joiner to complete work on important projects. 

A Joiner may be based on a construction site or in someone’s home; however, you will generally find them in a workshop where they have all the tools and equipment required to complete their work.

What Skills Does a Joiner Need?

Key skills of a Joiner include: 

  • Physical strength and fitness as the job may require some heavy lifting.
  • An eye for detail in order to create high quality structures. 
  • Good communication to effectively liaise with project managers and other tradespersons.
  • An understanding of health and safety in order to stay safe on site and create structures that meet industry safety guidelines.
  • Maths knowledge to calculate important measurements.
  • Patience in order to remain calm if something doesn’t work the first time. 
  • Basic computer skills to successfully use any digital technology that may be required. 
  • Confidence to safely use a range of electrical machinery and hand held tools. 

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