Explore Careers by Essential Skills
The essential skills profiles can:
- Help determine, based on skill sets, which career may best suit a particular individual.
- Assist job seekers to write a résumé or prepare for a job interview.
- Help employers to create a job posting.
Employers place a strong emphasis on essential skills in the workplace. Essential skills are used in nearly every occupation, and are seen as 'building blocks' because people build on them to learn all other skills.
Each profile contains a list of example tasks that illustrate how each of the 9 essential skill is generally performed by the majority of workers in an occupation. The estimated complexity levels for each task, between 1 (basic) and 5 (advanced), may vary based on the requirements of the workplace.
Floor Covering Installers (NOC 7295)
Floor covering installers install carpet, wood, linoleum, vinyl and other floor coverings in residential, commercial, industrial and institutional buildings.
- Read brief notes from contractors, supervisors, architects and designers, e.g. read notes from contractors to learn about parking, elevator use, noise restrictions and special floor preparation requirements. (1)
- Read notes on architectural drawings, e.g. read comments on drawings to learn about changes to floor covering specifications. (1)
- Read directions and handling instructions, e.g. read handling instructions and safety precautions on the labels of products, such as stains and adhesives in Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS). (2)
- Read memos and notices, e.g. read memos to learn about changes to worksite procedures and read notices to learn about upcoming meetings. (2)
- Read manufacturers' warranties, e.g. read manufacturers' warranties to learn about limits of coverage, documentation requirements and the process by which to file claims. (3)
- Read manuals, e.g. read manuals to determine which adhesives and tools to use and how much time to allow products to set and cure. (3)
- May read newsletters, website articles and trade magazines, e.g. read trade magazines to learn about developments in the flooring industry, new equipment and tools and trade tips. (3)
- May read agreements, e.g. read collective agreements to learn about working hours, overtime pay, vacation and personal leave. (3)
- Recognize symbols and icons, e.g. identify hazard symbols on Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) labels. (1)
- Locate data on lists and labels, e.g. scan deficiency lists to identify items requiring additional work and scan product labels to identify colours, drying times and spread rates of stains and adhesives. (1)
- Locate data in tables, e.g. locate information, such as dimensions, tolerances and durations, in specification tables. (2)
- Locate data in forms, e.g. scan estimate forms to locate labour and material costs and scan invoices to verify grades and quantities of products, such as hardwood. (2)
- Complete a variety of forms, e.g. enter quantities, types of flooring materials and additional products, such as adhesives, nails and stains, into purchase orders. (3)
- Locate data in technical drawings, e.g. study floor plans to identify types of materials to be installed, seam placements, carpet and tile patterns, inserts and floor transitions. (3)
- Write notes on work orders and floor layout plans, e.g. outline errors on floor layout plans and indicate where substitute materials were used. (1)
- Write reminders and notes to co-workers, customers and other tradespeople, e.g. write notes to customers informing them about changes to delivery and installation schedules. (1)
- May write reports to describe events leading up to workplace accidents, e.g. write about injuries and events when completing reports for workers' compensation boards. (2)
- Purchase trim, sub-floor materials and tools using cash, debit and credit cards. (1)
- Take measurements using a variety of measuring tools, e.g. measure floor lengths and widths, tread widths and riser heights using tape measures. (1)
- Compare measurements of flooring installation areas to dimensions specified in drawings and work orders. (1)
- Calculate summary measures, e.g. calculate the average amount of time needed to lay sections of flooring. (2)
- Estimate material requirements, e.g. based on past experience, estimate the amount of stain required to cover specified areas. (2)
- Estimate room size by conducting visual inspections and using proxies, such as paces and standard architectural features. (2)
- May prepare and verify invoices and estimates. They itemize prices and costs of materials, calculate labour charges at hourly rates and add applicable taxes. (3)
- May create work schedules. Self-employed workers take into account project specifications and the availability of materials and labour to setup work schedules. (3)
- Determine the quantity of material required for floor covering projects, e.g. calculate material requirements by considering room sizes, flooring patterns, seam placements and wastage. (3)
- Lay out flooring materials using geometric construction methods, e.g. lay out centre lines and parallel lines to create patterns, such as circles, triangles, squares, stars and waves. (3)
- Estimate time required to complete installations. They consider preparation details provided in work orders, size of areas to be covered, condition of sub-floors, amount of patching required and intricacy of installation. (3)
- Discuss floor covering products, prices and deliveries with suppliers, e.g. phone suppliers to find out why glues are not adhering well. (2)
- Discuss ongoing work with co-workers, contractors and other tradespeople, e.g. review the order of tasks, measurements and seam placements with other crew members. (2)
- May provide instructions and directions to apprentices and junior floor covering installers, e.g. teach ways of preparing, installing and finishing various flooring materials and respond to questions, such as how to weld seams. (2)
- May speak to customers on a wide range of topics, e.g. talk to customers about changes to flooring designs and product options, such as vinyl, tile, hardwood and carpeting. (3)
- Cannot complete their work because of missing materials and faulty tools. They call suppliers, request correct materials be delivered and borrow tools from co-workers. (1)
- Encounter delays caused by other tradespeople. They inform customers and supervisors about the delays and adjust their work schedules to reflect new installation dates. (1)
- Find that floors do not match descriptions in drawings and specifications. They contact dispatchers and customers, explain the inconsistencies and ask for directions on how to proceed. (2)
- Choose equipment and materials needed for projects. They review work order specifications and remember experiences with similar installations. (2)
- Select flooring installation methods, the order of tasks and layouts. They consider project specifications and the types of flooring materials to be installed. (2)
- Assess suitability of materials and products. They consider manufacturers' specifications, traffic flow patterns and unfavourable environmental conditions, such as extreme temperatures, high moisture levels and exposure to direct sunlight. (2)
- May evaluate apprentices. They observe skill demonstrations and consider apprentices' willingness to learn, attitudes towards other workers and work ethic. (2)
- Organize and put tasks in order for efficiency and to meet contractual timelines. Their work may vary according to the type of flooring material being installed. They also coordinate job tasks with contractors and construction crews. Self-employed floor covering installers plan their days to source and complete floor covering installation jobs. They prioritize their work in response to customers' requests. On larger installations, they may be required to coordinate their work with other tradespeople. (2)
- Locate information on flooring products and fixtures by conducting Internet research and by reading catalogues issued by suppliers. (2)
- Find information about installation jobs by reading work orders, reviewing drawings and speaking with salespeople, dispatchers, contractors and customers. (2)
- May decide upon fees to charge for services and materials, e.g. self-employed floor installers determine their fees by considering the size and scope of projects and the cost of materials, such as flooring. (3)
- Judge the quality of completed floor covering projects. They consider factors, such as project specifications, timelines, customer satisfaction levels and the overall quality of the installation. (3)
- Use calculators and personal digital assistant (PDA) devices to complete numeracy-related tasks, such as calculating material requirements. (1)
- May use digital hand-held devices to measure distances and the moisture content of wood used for flooring. (1)
- May use word processing software to write letters to customers and prepare job estimates and invoices. (2)
- May use spreadsheet software to tally costs for job estimates and invoices. (2)
- May use billing and accounting software to input and track sales, produce invoices and estimates and print reports, such as income and expense statements. (2)
- May use communication software to exchange email with customers, suppliers and co-workers. (2)
- May use computer-assisted design (CAD) software to access, modify and print technical drawings. (2)
- May use databases to enter and retrieve project information. (2)
- May use databases to retrieve and print technical drawings. (2)
- May use the Internet to access training courses and seminars offered by apprenticeship trainers, associations, unions, suppliers and employers. (2)
- May use Internet browsers and search engines to access technical service bulletins, specifications and information about new tools and processes. (2)
Floor covering installers coordinate tasks with small crews and other trades to ensure efficient use of time and to meet installation timelines. They may work with apprentices.Continuous Learning
Floor covering installers learn on-the-job and through their daily interactions with co-workers and colleagues. They attend courses offered by product manufacturers to learn about new products and installation procedures. They read manufacturers' product manuals, product information sheets and trade magazines. In some provinces and territories, their union contracts stipulate that they must upgrade their skills by completing a minimum of two courses every two years.
Impact of Digital Technology
All essential skills are affected by the introduction of technology in the workplace. Floor covering installers' ability to adapt to new technologies is strongly related to their skill levels across the essential skills, including reading, writing, thinking and communication skills. Technologies are transforming the ways in which workers obtain, process and communicate information, and the types of skills needed to perform in their jobs. Floor covering installers, particularly if they are self-employed, need digital skills to use software applications that might help them bill and communicate with customers, track costs and revenues, and produce financial summaries. While workers need the skills to use increasingly complex software, such as specialized flooring applications, software and hardware developers are also improving ease of use through touch-screen technology, built-in self-help tutorials and user-friendly software applications.
Technology in the workplace further affects the complexity of tasks related to the essential skills required for this occupation. For example, workers can calculate costs, material requirements, conversions, volumes, rates and other numeracy-related tasks using Web-based applications, specialized flooring software and hand-held devices, such as personal digital assistants (PDAs). Digital tools can also assist workers in completing documents (e.g. work orders) with speed and accuracy using software applications that input data automatically. For example, installers may use digital hand-held devices to measure distances and the moisture content of wood used for flooring, or computer-assisted design (CAD) software to access, modify and print technical drawings.
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