Building Inspector
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Electrical Installation Inspector
Plumbing Inspector



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Practical or MechanicalClerical or OrganisingAnalytic or ScientificSkill Level 4Skill Level 5

Building Inspectors inspect buildings to ensure compliance with laws and regulations and advise on building requirements. Building inspectors, more commonly known as building surveyors, make sure that buildings are energy efficient and accessible. Building surveyors advise on, interpret and enforce laws and regulations regarding building construction and safety. They analyse plans, issue relevant permits, certificates and approvals, and conduct inspections during the construction phase to ensure that the building is fit to be occupied. Building surveyors may work all over Australia in corporate companies working on residential and commercial developments, or for local government agencies. Future Growth Very Strong

Building inspectors ensure that construction meets local and national building codes and ordinances, zoning regulations, and contract specifications. Accredited certifiers issue development certificates to confirm they are satisfied the development meets legislative requirements. They inspect construction and subdivision work at critical stages, which differ according to the type of development.

Alternative names: Building Certifier; Building Surveyor

Specialisations: Electrical Installation Inspector

Knowledge, skills and attributes

As a Building Inspector, you would:

  • enjoy technical work
  • have good communication skills
  • able to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems
  • numerical skills, to consider the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate ones.
  • have good management and leadership skills

Making Notes 
(Source: CareerFAQs)

Duties and Tasks

Building Inspectors may perform the following tasks:

  • Provide advice and assistance to builders and owners before finalisation and lodgement of building plans to avoid potential problems
  • Review and provide advice on plans to ensure they meet building codes, local ordinances, zoning regulations and contract specifications.
  • Assess building plans submitted for approval to ensure they conform to building regulations and codes of practice
  • Approves building plans that are satisfactory and issues building permits.
  • Monitors construction sites periodically to ensure overall compliance - inspect buildings during construction to ensure proper methods and materials are used and that they conform to building regulations
  • Inspects plumbing, electrical and other systems to verify alignment level, structure elevation and ensure that they meet the necessary code/specifications.
  • Uses survey instruments, metering devices, and test equipment to perform inspections.
  • Provides written documentation of findings from inspections - keep records and write reports on building progress in instances where regulations have been breached and plans have been altered
  • Issues violation notices and stop-work orders until building work is compliant.
  • Certifies structure and plan compliance with the corresponding building regulations.
  • Make recommendations on matters such as the provision of amenities for the community
  • Carry out pre-purchase inspections of all types of buildings
  • Issue compliance certificates on completion
  • Give evidence in court cases involving breaches of building regulations
  • Assess the condition of existing buildings
  • Audit buildings for access by disabled persons
  • Inspect bridges, dams, highways, buildings, wiring, plumbing, electrical circuits, sewers, heating systems, or foundations during and after construction for structural quality, general safety, or conformance to specifications and codes
  • Inspect facilities or installations to determine their environmental impact
  • Monitor installation of plumbing, wiring, equipment, or appliances to ensure that installation is performed properly and is in compliance with applicable regulations
  • Measure dimensions and verify level, alignment, or elevation of structures or fixtures to ensure compliance to building plans and codes
  • Maintain daily logs and supplement inspection records with photographs
  • Review and interpret plans, blueprints, site layouts, specifications, or construction methods to ensure compliance to legal requirements and safety regulations.

 

As a certifier, you might:
  • inspect buildings during construction to ensure proper methods and materials are used and that they conform to building regulations

  • keep records and write reports on building progress in instances where regulations have been breached and plans have been altered

  • issue compliance certificates on completion

  • give evidence in court cases involving breaches of building regulations.


Taking notes
(Source: Canberrabic)

Working conditions

Building surveyors often split their time between working in an office environment and being on construction sites conducting inspections. They generally work business hours, however, they may work overtime to meet project deadlines. Building inspectors and certifiers spend considerable time inspecting worksites, alone or as part of a team. Some inspectors may have to climb ladders or crawl in tight spaces.

Building sites may be hazardous spaces and when on site they are usually required to wear safety gear.

Tools and technologies

Building surveyors use computers to prepare reports, maintain business documentation and databases, and communicate with clients. They read architectural plans to ensure compliance, and are able to connect the plans to construction conditions on site. When on a construction site they must wear safety equipment such as a hard hat, steel-capped boots, safety glasses, high-visibility clothing and ear protection.

Did You Know? 

A building inspector is an individual who is qualified to inspect both domestic and commercial structures. This is actioned to ensure they comply with the necessary standards and regulations, and the original building plan. It is also their job to verify the workmanship of the builder or tradesperson and to identify any defects, if any. While regulations differ from state to state, Australia as a whole has a very strict set of standards that all builders and contractors are expected to adhere to. Failure to do so can result in consequences for the individual responsible.

A building inspection can be carried out prior, during and after a structure has been built and is sometimes done at random to ensure builders are complying with the correct standards. Commercial structures in particular are typically always subjected to a thorough building inspection to ensure safety.

Building Inspector


Types of issues uncovered in an inspection

Depending on the age of the property, the range of problematic areas, defects, deterioration, or damage can vary greatly.

Structural issues: a building with structural weakness in its roof, walls, flooring, or foundation poses the risk of collapse and injuring anybody within proximity of the building.

Wiring and electrical concerns: this is an important one as poor wiring is one of main culprits of building fires. Another aspect inspectors look for is whether a building has the right amount of functioning smoke alarms to accurately detect smoke in the event of a fire.

Identifying hazards: this could mean identifying asbestos, mould, loose balustrades, gas leaks, water damage or a number of other hazardous materials.

Wear and tear: more common with older, or poorly constructed builders, these types of defects are usually uncovered in a pre-house purchase inspection when potential buyers are calculating how much they would have to invest in renovations.

(Source: Builders Academy)


Education and training/entrance requirements

You usually need a formal qualification in building surveying to work as a Building Inspector. The Advanced Diploma of Building Surveying is available at TAFE colleges and other registered training organisations throughout Australia.

Most certifiers are qualified building surveyors.

Entry to this occupation may be improved if you have a degree in building surveying, construction management, civil engineering or architecture. To get into these courses you usually need to gain your HSC/ACT Year 12. Prerequisite subjects, or assumed knowledge, in one or more of English, mathematics and physics are normally required. Applicants may be required to submit a folio of work and/or attend an interview. A number of institutions in Australia offer degrees in these areas. Institutions have different prerequisites and some have flexible entry requirements. CQ University offers a six-year part time Bachelor of Building Surveying and Certification (Honours) via distance education.

All those who work in the construction industry must undergo safety induction training and be issued with a Construction Induction Card (CIC). In NSW, training is conducted by Registered Training Organisations authorised by SafeWork NSW. In the ACT, training is provided by Registered Training Organisations approved by WorkSafe ACT./span>

To work as a building surveyor in the ACT, you need to be accredited by the Australian Institute of Building Surveyors. There are different levels of accreditation based on levels of qualification, which determine the kind of work you can perform.

To work as a building surveyor in NSW, you need to be accredited by the Building Professionals Board. There are different levels of accreditation available, depending on qualifications and experience, which determine the types of buildings you can work on.

In WA, building surveyors must be registered with the Building Services Board. There are different levels of registration which, based on your qualifications and experience, determine the types of buildings you can work on.

Building Inspector
(Source: Inspect East)

Employment Opportunities

Most employment opportunities arise in local government bodies (shire, town and city councils). Employment of building inspectors and certifiers is projected to grow about as fast as the average for all occupations. Increased government regulation and a desire to improve the quality of construction should continue to increase demand for inspectors.

Employment growth is expected to be strongest in government and in firms specialising in architectural, engineering, and related services.

There are some opportunities to apply the skills acquired in this occupation to other jobs in banks and building societies, as well as in building management companies. Building surveyors may become self-employed and subcontract to major building companies.

 

Electrical Installation Inspector
Government and Defence

Practical or MechanicalClerical or OrganisingAnalytic or Scientific

Responsible for inspecting the installation of electrical systems and equipment to detect faulty wiring and ensure they comply with electrical codes and standards. Visits construction sites and residences, performs inspection, and makes recommendations for improvement. Electrical inspectors are employed by state and local governments to ensure that proper safety codes are followed with respect to a building's electrical wiring and other electrical components. The specific duties of an electrical inspector include viewing non-residential building's electrical installations for any discernible defects. Electrical inspectors also advise building owners how to correct electrical problems in an efficient manner to bring a building up to code. Future Growth Very Strong

ANZSCO ID: 312113

Knowledge, skills and attributes      

Electrical inspectors are fit and coordinated enough to spend much of their time in hardhat areas. They enjoy working alone and have good reading, writing and time-management skills.   

 

Electrical Installation Inspector
(Source: Infobloom)

Duties and Tasks

Examines Installation of Electrical Systems
During construction of new buildings, an electrical inspector visits the project site and inspects the installation of the building's electrical system to find defects. While making sure that the system is working properly, the inspector also makes sure that the electrical wiring systems comply with existing building codes. Other electrical components, such as air conditioning systems and generators, are also checked by the inspector to make sure they are working properly.

Investigates Code Violation Occurances
During a typical work week, an electrical inspector may be sent to various building sites to investigate reported code violations with electrical systems. While inspecting the building for these code violations, the inspector takes notes about what he finds that needs to repaired immediately and creates a violation report for the building's owner.

Monitors Assigned Construction Areas
As the need arises, an electrical inspector may be called upon to monitor areas at construction sites to determine if proper code guidelines are being followed by the construction team. Specific construction areas where work is being performed without a permit need to be monitored by the inspector so that warnings can be given to the construction boss if safety regulations are not being followed. Dangerous areas with ongoing construction are monitored by the electrical inspector as well.

Advises Contractors on Construction Code
When installation of a new building's electrical system violates code, the electrical inspector must advise the project's contractor about the violation. While explaining the problem with the installation process of the electrical system to the contractor, the inspector goes over in great detail the best way to deal with the problem as effectively as possible.

  • Examine electrical systems and equipment.
  • Inspect new and existing sound and security systems, wiring, lighting, motors, and generating equipment.
  • Inspect the installation of the electrical wiring for heating and air-conditioning systems, appliances, and other components.
  • Keep records and write reports.
  • Report findings to contractors or government agencies.
  • Report violations.
  • Stop construction of non-compliant installations.
  • Examine and inspect wire harnesses, control panels, coaxial cables, and electrical jig boards, for completeness of assembly, quality, and conformance to blueprints.
  • Inspect wiring of assemblies for accuracy of stripping, soldering, and crimping, and for defects.
  • Look for frayed wires and loose connections.
  • Test continuity.
  • Compile inspection reports.
  • Write up recommendations for improvement.
  • Verify wire and cable length.
  • Examine parts and assemblies.

Tools and technologies

Using meters and other devices, they examine wiring, lighting, motors, generators and sometimes heating and air-conditioning systems and other appliances to make sure they're safe and compliant with government standards designed to protect the public. Working by hand or on computers, they keep records and write reports; those who work for government agencies may act on their findings by notifying contractors of violations and, when necessary, stopping the construction of non-compliant installations.

Education and training/entrance requirements

While there is no standard path into the field, an electrical inspector needs to have a thorough knowledge of electricity, electronics and codes, an electrician background, or a 2-year or 4-year TAFE certificate, often incorporating courses in electrical wiring, carpentry and architectural drawing.

 

 

Plumbing Inspector
Government and Defence

Practical or MechanicalClerical or OrganisingAnalytic or ScientificSkill Level 3

Plumbing Inspectors inspect plumbing work to ensure compliance with relevant standards and regulations. Future Growth Very StrongA plumbing inspector examines and tests various plumbing and drainage systems to ensure the piping has been installed correctly and that the system complies with local, state, and federal codes. This service is typically required for commercial and public-use buildings.

As a plumbing inspector, your responsibilities include reviewing construction plans, teaching building owners how to fix code violations, and reporting any unresolved issues. Your inspection is both visual and mechanical; you must confirm the project utilizes the proper piping size, connections, trap seals, and cleanouts, and that the contractors only use approved materials, devices, fixtures, and equipment.

ANZSCO ID: 312115

Specialisations: Drainage Inspector, Gas Plumbing Inspector, Sanitary Plumbing, Water Supply Inspector

Knowledge, skills and attributes   

  • Proven experience working within the building and plumbing industry, with demonstrated experience applying relevant legislation, regulations, standards and codes and ensuring plumbing and drainage construction is compliant.
  • Proven communication skills with the ability to liaise and respond appropriately to customer complaints and ensure a high level of customer service is provided.
  •  Proven problem solving skills with ability to use judgement and initiative to resolve complex plumbing and drainage issues and ensures compliance with legislation.
  •  Demonstrated time management, planning and organisational skills with ability to use initiative to ensure all tasks are completed within the required timeframes.
  • Ability to work in an office and outdoor environment.
  •  Ability to legally operate a motor vehicle under a “C” Class Licence.
  •  A willingness to undertake a Functional Capacity Evaluation to satisfy the inherent physical requirements of the position.
  •  Provision of a satisfactory Criminal History Check - Police Certificate (Australia Wide Name Only Police Check).
  •  Ability to be immunised against Hepatitis A&B and Tetanus

Plumbing Inspector at work
(Source: YourCareer)

Duties and Tasks

  • Inspects work and materials for compliance with specifications, regulations and standards.
  • Assess Plumbing and Drainage applications for compliance with all relevant Standards, Acts, Regulations and State/Territory/Council Policies
  • Undertake investigation of Customer Requests and if necessary take enforcement action to ensure compliance with various legislations.
  •  Monitor and undertake required inspections and tests in accordance with various legislations for: plumbing and drainage, on-site facilities, backflow prevention, sewerage trade wastes and fire protection plumbing.
  •  Coordinate the process of issuing permits and maintaining the register in accordance with various legislations for: plumbing and drainage, on-site facilities, backflow prevention, sewerage trade wastes and fire protection plumbing.
  •  Ability to draw “as constructed” sanitary drainage plans using State/Territory/Councils' CAD system or quality hand drawings skills when required.
  •  Complete on-site inspection checklists when carrying out inspections.
  •  Provide expert advice to lower classified officers.
  •  Ensure all on-site work complies with the relevant Standards, Acts, Regulations and where applicable State/Territory/Council Polic

Education and training/entrance requirements

You usually need a certificate III in plumbing and a trade background in plumbing to work as a Plumbing Inspector. Need to obtain Confined Space Certificate.

 

Building Inspector Air Force Officer

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Fisheries Officer

Postal Worker

Local Government Inspector

Biosecurity Officer

Border Force Officer

Naval Officer

Road Worker

Army Officer

Parliamentarian

Urban and Regional Planner

Police Officer

Community Corrections

Diplomat

Public Servant

Coroner

Primary Products Inspector

Tourist Information Officer

Transport Services Officer

Meteorologist

Emergency Disaster Planner

Animal Control Officer

Air Force Officer

WHS Officer

Electorate Officer

Park Ranger

Prison Officer

Fisheries Officer

Postal Worker

Local Government Inspector

Biosecurity Officer

Border Force Officer

Naval Officer

Road Worker

Army Officer

Parliamentarian

Urban and Regional Planner

Police Officer

Community Corrections

Diplomat

 

Public Servant

Coroner

Primary Products Inspector

Tourist Information Officer

Transport Services Officer

Meteorologist

Emergency Disaster Planner

Animal Control Officer

Building Inspector

Air Force Officer

WHS Officer

Electorate Officer

Park Ranger

Prison Officer

Fisheries Officer

Postal Worker

Local Government Inspector

Biosecurity Officer

Border Force Officer

Naval Officer

Road Worker

Army Officer

Parliamentarian

Urban and Regional Planner

Police Officer

Community Corrections

Diplomat

Public Servant

Coroner

Primary Products Inspector

Tourist Information Officer

Transport Services Officer

Meteorologist

Emergency Disaster Planner

Animal Control Officer

Building Inspector