According to the US Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, http://www.bls.gov/oco/ocos005.htm
Wages of salaried construction managers and self-employed independent construction contractors vary with the size and nature of the construction project, its geographic location, and economic conditions. In addition to receiving typical benefits, many salaried construction managers earn bonuses and are allowed the use of company motor vehicles.
According to a July 2009 salary survey by the National Association of Colleges and Employers, people with a bachelor's degree in construction science or construction management received job offers averaging $53,199 a year.
Median annual wages of salaried construction managers in May 2008 were $79,860. The middle 50 percent earned between $60,650 and $107,140. The lowest paid 10 percent earned less than $47,000, and the highest paid 10 percent earned more than $145,920. Median annual wages in the industries employing the largest numbers of construction managers were as follows:
Building equipment contractors $81,590
Nonresidential building construction $79,950
Other specialty trade contractors $78,410
Foundation, structure, and building exterior contractors $76,880
Residential building construction $74,770
The earnings of self-employed workers are not included in these numbers.
Education and training. For construction manager jobs, a bachelor's degree in construction science, construction management, building science, or civil engineering, plus work experience, is becoming the norm. However, years of experience, in addition to taking classes in the field or getting an associate’s degree, can substitute for a bachelor’s degree. Practical construction experience is very important for entering this occupation, whether earned through an internship, a cooperative education program, a job in the construction trades, or another job in the industry. Some people advance to construction management positions after having substantial experience as construction craftworkers—carpenters, masons, plumbers, or electricians, for example—or after having worked as construction supervisors or as owners of independent specialty contracting firms. However, as construction processes become increasingly complex, employers are placing more importance on specialized education after high school.
More than 100 colleges and universities offer bachelor's degree programs in construction science, building science, and construction engineering. These programs include courses in project control and development, site planning, design, construction methods, construction materials, value analysis, cost estimating, scheduling, contract administration, accounting, business and financial management, safety, building codes and standards, inspection procedures, engineering and architectural sciences, mathematics, statistics, and information technology. Graduates from 4-year degree programs usually are hired as assistants to project managers, field engineers, schedulers, or cost estimators. An increasing number of graduates in related fields—engineering or architecture, for example—also enter construction management, often after acquiring substantial experience on construction projects.