Roofers are specialist building workers whose skills are used to erect and clad roof structures and install waterproofing, rainwater equipment and flashings.

Roof construction entails the setting out and construction of various trusses; the erection of roofs; and cladding of roof structures with different materials.

Rainwater equipment includes: development of sheet metal components; marking, cutting, riveting and soldering of sheet metal; and the fabrication and fitting of gutters and downpipes.

Waterproofing installation entails: identification of waterproofing materials; measuring and estimating quantities; and the application of reinforced liquid waterproofing.

Roofers work closely with carpenters, bricklayers, plasterers and other tradesmen in the building industry.

Personal Requirements

  • at least 16 years old
  • able to interpret scale drawings
  • patient, careful and responsible
  • able to work at heights on scaffolding
  • good eye-hand coordination
  • able to use both hands with confidence
  • physically strong

How to Enter

Schooling & School Subjects

Grade 9 Certificate.
Some employers prefer higher qualifications

What to Study

There are 3 ways to qualify as a registered artisan:

1. An apprenticeship is a fixed contract between company and apprentice, ranging in duration from between 18 months and 4 years. At the end of the contract, the apprentice writes a trade test leading to professional certification.
2. A learnership is a structured learning programme ranging from about a year to 3 years. A learnership comprises theoretical and practical training. Practical training is conducted on site (on the premises of the organisation). This has the advantage that the learner gets experience whilst training.

3. TVET colleges offer theoretical training to prospective artisans via the new National Certificate Vocational (NCV). During this 3-year programme (levels 2 to 4), learners complete a school-leaving certificate (NCV) similar to the new National Senior Certificate (NSC) in schools. They are also exposed to a practical workshop component.

All learners are required to complete a practical internship under the supervision of an experienced artisan. As an alternative to doing the full qualification, a learner can apply to do a skills programme at a TVET College. Skills programmes are short practical hands-on courses.

For more information about qualifications and skills programmes, contact your nearest TVET College. TVET Colleges are accredited and funded by a SETA (Sector Education and Training Authority) such as MerSETA or ChietaSETA. They also receive bursary funding through the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) for the NCV programme.


  • building contractors
  • industrial firms
  • trade and general contractors
  • government concerns
  • self-employment, with enough experience can practise this trade on a private basis or start own business

Further Information

Midrand Builders Centre
183 Kerk Street (cnr Old Pretoria Main Road)
Halfway House Midrand, 1685
Tel: (011) 265-5901

Getting Started

  • try to obtain vacation or part-time work in a building contracting company
  • speak to a roofer about this career
  • contact the Department of Labour about learnership possibilities in your area

Programmes by Study Institutions

Related Occupations

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