Buildersâ€™ merchants (or DIY store workers) sell building and do-it-yourself products to the building trade and the general public. Products include timber, bricks, decorating materials, plumbing supplies, tools and gardening equipment.
As a builder’s merchant, you would:
- give out product information to customers
- load and unload deliveries by hand or with a forklift truck
- process orders and handle payments
- move goods to storage areas
- put orders together and organise deliveries
- advise customers about which materials to use for a particular job.
With experience, you may work as a team leader or yard manager, with responsibility for staff training, planning, purchasing, stock control, and health and safety.
What qualifications and experience will employers look for?
You do not need any formal qualifications to work as a builder’s merchant, but you will need a good standard of maths and English, and some employers may ask for GCSEs (A-C) in English and maths.
You may be able to get into this career through an Apprenticeship scheme with a DIY store or building suppliers. The range of Apprenticeships available in your area will depend on the local jobs market and the types of skills employers need from their workers.Â To find out more aboutÂ Apprenticeships, visit the Apprenticeships website.
The Builders Merchants Federation (BMF) website also has information on apprenticeships.
- Builders Merchants Federation (BMF)
Experience in the construction industry, warehousing or retail may give you an advantage when looking for work. It would also be useful if you have a forklift truck and/or LGV licence. See the profile for Forklift Truck Operator to find out more about forklift training.
What further training and development can I do?
You would normally receive training from your employer when you start work. Your employer may encourage you to take one of the following NVQs that are supported by the BMF, including:
- Warehousing and Storage
- Customer Service
- Business Administration.
The BMF also offers short courses in management, operations, product knowledge, sales and forklift operation. For more details, contact the BMF.