Structural steel erectors are specialized iron-workers who are typically employed by construction contractors. Steel erectors are the workers who help install steel girders, crossbeams, scaffolds, and pipe sections which form the frameworks of large and multi-story buildings. The steel structures they help construct are usually joined by these workers with a combination of heavy welds and bolts. Structural steel erectors must also coordinate with a variety of teams and heavy equipment, such as cranes.
Most structural steel erectors work under the supervision of construction site foremen and managers who help lay out the plans for where new sections of buildings will be constructed. They typically help build scaffolding and maneuvering platforms, as well as construct safety framing iron lattice work around these sections. As the building fills out, the steel erectors may be called upon to assist pipe-fitters with laying in heavy pipe sections, as well.
Most structural steel erectors should also be comfortable with working at great heights on multi-story structures. Steel erectors typically work on scaffolds and inside cherry-pickers at the ends of cranes to manage the bolting and welding of beams, girders, and other steel portions of superstructures. Steel erectors should also be adept at quickly inspecting and assessing their own work in order to create neat but strong structural joints.
Practical experience is held in high regard for this position, and a high school diploma or equivalent may be required for insurance purposes relating to construction site liability. Most in this line of work begin early as apprentices and work their way up, and many are also union workers. Erectors should expect to work primarily outdoors during construction season, and should be physically fit and able to lift and move heavy construction loads on a regular basis.