15 Certifications for Construction Management (With Tips)

Updated June 24, 2022

Many positions and duties in the construction industry involve specialized knowledge and skills. Some construction managers choose to pursue certifications in these areas to demonstrate their expertise and dedication. You might consider earning a certification if you're a professional who's familiar with the many aspects of managing construction sites and projects. In this article, we discuss what a construction management certification is, why it may benefit you, a list of possible construction certifications and tips to help you choose and pursue your own construction management certification.

Related: Why You Should Consider a Construction Management Degree

What are construction management certifications?

Construction management certifications are formal verifications of a professional's expertise in various construction management specialties. Certifications often require the completion of a training program and renewal after a certain number of years. Programs often include education on safety protocols, equipment maintenance and operation and specific training related to a construction manager's specialty.

Related: Top Construction Skills and How To List Them

What are the benefits of earning a construction management certification?

Construction management certifications may demonstrate your credibility, commitment and knowledge regarding the construction industry. These certifications may help employers or hiring managers assess your skills. Other certifications, such as those for safety and equipment, indicate that you can perform effective work while keeping your environment and peers safe.

Related: 12 Jobs in Construction That Pay Well

10 types of construction manager certifications

Here's a list of common construction certifications and organizations that offer certification courses for this industry:

1. Certified Construction Manager (CCM)

A Certified Construction Manager is someone with proven expertise in construction design, planning, management and safety. This certification program requires a bachelor's degree and at least four years of construction management experience. Completion also requires passing a written test and renewal every three years.

Related: How To Become a Construction Manager

2. Associate Constructor (AC)

This certificate is the first level of the American Institution of Constructors (AIC) certification program. Associate Constructors have a high level of skill and familiarity with construction management and also abide by the AIC code of ethics. This certificate is ideal for recent graduates of a construction management graduate program or people who wish to transfer from another industry because it can help them learn the basic requirements of construction management. This certificate is also the first step to earning higher-level certifications in this association. After passing your final exam, you renew this certification every three years.

3. Certified Professional Contractor (CPC)

This certificate is the second certificate and highest level certificate the AIC offers. Certified Professional Contractors have experience and knowledge managing project efficiency and performance. They also abide by the AIC code of ethics. Construction managers with several years of project management experience or a desire to advance their careers might elect to pursue this certificate. Completion of this program requires passing a computer-based final exam and renewal every three years.

4. Occupational Safety and Health Administration Outreach Training Program for the Construction Industry

OSHA's training programs include 10-hour and 30-hour classes that teach workers' rights, employer responsibilities, workplace hazards and accident avoidance techniques. Construction managers may find the 30-hour class more effective because they're responsible for their employees' safety on the worksite. These programs aren't specifically labeled as certifications, but they provide authentic safety credentials to employers and clients.

5. National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES)

This organization offers certifications for engineering and surveying. Earning one of these certificates requires passing a final exam such as Fundamentals of Engineering (FE), Professional Engineering (PE), Structural Engineering (SE), Fundamentals of Surveying (FS) and Professional Surveying (PS). Requirements for program completion vary by state.

6. Certified Safety Manager Construction (CSMC)

The National Association of Safety Professionals (NASP) offers this certification program. A CSMC certification verifies that you can supervise projects and work sites without assistance. The program focuses on teaching leadership skills related to safety and helps you develop plans and procedures within the construction industry. To complete this program, you pass a written final exam and re-certify every three years.

7. National Center for Construction Education & Research (NCCER)

This organization has certifications for over 70 areas of construction that range from entry-level to senior-level accreditations. For example, some certificates available include construction technology, alternate energy, electrical fundamentals and maritime fundamentals. Completion and recertification requirements vary between programs.

8. American Concrete Institute (ACI)

The ACI offers numerous certification programs related to testing, inspecting, using and assuring the quality of concrete. Construction workers who work often with concrete may benefit from t his certification. Program completion requirements vary between certifications.

9. National Association of Corrosion Engineers (NACE)

NACE offers over 23 certifications related to inspecting, managing and preventing corrosion. Construction workers who often work in areas where there are concerns regarding corrosion and structural health may benefit from these certifications. Program completion requirements usually include passing a final exam, but recertification conditions vary.

10. U.S. Green Building Council Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED)

The U.S. Green Building Council offers many certification programs related to sustainability practices in construction such as LEED Fellow, Green Rater and Green Classroom Professional. Other LEED certifications include Green Associate and AP with Specialty (Building Design and Construction, Operations and Maintenance, Interior Design and Construction, Neighborhood Development and Homes). LEED-certified buildings use fewer resources, produce less waste and reduce overall environmental impact. Professionals who work in sustainability or want to undertake environmentally-friendly projects may benefit from these certifications. Completion requirements vary between programs.

5 construction equipment certifications

Construction equipment certifications are useful because they verify that you can safely and efficiently operate, maintain and inspect common construction machinery. Here's a list of common equipment certifications you might consider:

1. Sit-down forklift operator

People use forklifts to move heavy equipment, so it's important to understand safety, operation and maintenance procedures when using these machines. Training programs often include the completion of a final exam and then recertification every three years. You can also operate other machinery with a forklift certification license such as pallet trucks and rider trucks.

2. Crane operation

The National Commission for the Certification of Crane Operators (NCCCO) is an organization that offers many training courses for the operation and maintenance of different types of cranes. They also offer certifications for crane inspectors and lift directors. Program completion includes passing written exams, with recertification required every three years.

3. Off-road dump truck

Dump truck training courses can teach you about safety, operations and maintenance involving dump trucks and the transfer of construction materials from one place to another. You may also learn how to drive a dump truck in a variety of settings. Training program requirements often include attaining a commercial driver's license (CDL) and completing a final exam. Recertification varies depending on the state in which you work but averages every five years.

4. Grading and paving equipment

Equipment such as rollers, graders and aggregate spreaders require you to get certified before you can use them safely. Training programs often include instruction on hydraulic and electrical system maintenance, troubleshooting, machine set-up, special applications and asphalt mixes. Program completion often requires passing a final exam. Recertification varies between programs but typically occurs every three years on average.

5. Commercial driver's license (CDL)

Operating commercial vehicles requires specific training, education, skills and physical abilities that differ from a regular driver's license. Commercial vehicles can include trucks with double or triple trailers, tanks or hazardous materials. Each state has different requirements to earn a CDL, so it's useful to research the requirements for the state in which you work to gain more information.

Tips for pursuing a construction management certification

Here are a few tips to help you choose and earn a construction management certification:

  • Evaluate your education and career goals. It's important to evaluate what construction role you want to pursue before choosing a certification. Certifications have different requirements depending on specialty and skills, so you may want to choose a specialization and hone your skills first before enrolling in a certification course.

  • Consider your budget. Training or certificate programs often vary in cost depending on who is hosting these programs and what kind of training is included. Researching the cost of different programs may help you choose the right course for you.

  • Evaluate your schedule. Certificate programs' durations can vary between each organization that offers the courses, so you may want to check your schedule before enrolling to ensure that you can adequately study and prepare for course assignments or tests.

  • Consider pursuing higher education. Earning a four-year degree in a construction-related field may help construction employees develop valuable technical and leadership skills. It may also make earning certifications much easier because they have more experience and training prior to engaging with their certification assignments.

Please note that none of the organizations mentioned in this article are affiliated with Indeed.

Related Articles

Learn About Being a Laborer

Explore more articles

  • How To Tell an Employee They Need To Improve in 6 Steps
  • How To Fill Color in Excel Cells Using a Formula in 6 Steps
  • What Is a Coffee Chat? (Plus Benefits and Helpful Tips)
  • 15 Examples of Human Resource Management Objectives
  • How To Improve Your Typing Skills (Plus Exercises To Try)
  • How To Request a Letter of Recommendation for College
  • 30 Common Business Buzzwords and Their Definitions
  • 22 Value Proposition Examples To Help You Create Your Own
  • How To Calculate CPI (Consumer Price Index)
  • How To Write a Letter To Sell a Product (With Sample)
  • What Is Instructional Leadership? Definition and Examples
  • Annual Leave Letter: Definition, How To Write and Example