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A career guide to becoming a Traffic Marshal

Published: Friday 9th October 2020

Traffic marshals play an important role in the construction sector and can be a great stepping-stone to other positions in this growing industry. The job often involves working on building sites and roads to ensure the safe movement of construction vehicles and public traffic. Once commonly known as a banksman, the role has become more varied and can now involve many different duties. Working as a traffic marshal will likely involve the use of a variety of equipment, including radios and traffic lights. Keep reading to learn more about how to become a traffic marshal.

What is a Traffic Marshal? 

Depending on the role and sector you are working in, what you will be doing as a traffic marshal could vary. The job can involve controlling traffic and helping maintain security and surveillance of a construction/work site. You may also be responsible for deliveries and visitor logbooks for a site.  

Traffic marshall with a stop sign on the road.

In terms of what does a traffic marshal do, main duties will focus on ensuring all traffic around a site moves safely and effectively. This can include the movement of cranes and other large vehicles, as well as keeping in constant communication with drivers. You may also be expected to help control public vehicles. This can include directing traffic, setting-up automated traffic signals and ensuring traffic flow remains safe and effective.  

How to become a Traffic Marshal 

There are a variety of ways you can become a traffic marshal. Many of the roles are entry-level, meaning you will not be required to have any previous experience. Furthermore, there are often no qualification requirements. Most employers will only seek GCSEs in English and maths. However, there are a number of skills and character traits that will help you regarding how to become a traffic marshal. These include: 

  • Basic understanding of health & safety 
  • Good physical fitness and awareness of surroundings 
  • Clear communications skills 
  • Confident personality and hard working 
  • Strong attention to detail and ability to multi-task 

construction traffic marshall controlling traffic.

Traffic Marshal salaries and career development 

Marshal jobs feature important responsibilities and can provide excellent opportunities to further your career. Starting salaries will vary depending on the specific role and its location. For example, many traffic marshal jobs in central London will pay more than those in other UK cities. Salaries begin around £16,000 on average for entry-level positions, with this rising to around £20,000 for positions in London. Once you have gained experience, wages can increase to around £18,000 – £23,000.  

Furthermore, depending on the size of the site you are working on, your overall duties will likely vary. As such, you will have the opportunity to learn important new skills. Many of these skills can be easily transferred to other roles in the construction, logistics and security sectors. If you show ability in the role and are a quick learner, it is likely you will be given even more responsibilities. This will include the opportunities to move to more senior-level positions.  

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