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The carpenter builds wall and ceiling framework (metal and timber), including installing windows and doorways, as well as laying timber floorings.

Tasks and tools used

  • measuring and setting/marking out site using pegs, string line, marking pins or marking paint
  • using laser levels according to plans and specifications
  • lifting and carrying materials (metal [galvanised tin] framework, typically weighing less than 5kg per length) onsite
  • cut material to size
  • position framework components  and fastened to the wall/floor  (for example, small horizontal sections [noggins] are positioned and fastened between the verticals)
  • subsections may be pre-assembled at ground level and then fastened to the door and/or floor
  • building pergolas and walkways between sheds
  • building of box stairs during the early stages of site set-up
  • hand and power tools such as drills, circular saws, nail guns, hammers, levels, squares, screwdrivers, cordless drills and similar
  • work is performed from ground level to overhead and includes using, lifting and carrying ladders as well as elevated work platforms and scissor lifts
  • accessing the site may involve climbing stairs and negotiation uneven surfaces and obstacles.

Personal protective equipment

  • gloves
  • hard hat
  • mask
  • visibility vest
  • trousers
  • safety boots
  • ear muffs/plugs
  • safety glasses
  • sunscreen.
Critical job demand descriptor% of time the task is performedTask


  • standing
  • gripping of objects

34% - 66%

  • operation of power tools
  • carrying of objects weighing up to 5kg
  • lifting of objects weighing up to 5kg between floor height and overhead

5% - 33%

  • kneeling and crouching positions
  • climbing of stairs and ladders
  • negotiation of uneven surfaces and obstacles
  • trunk flexion greater than 15 degrees


  • lifting of objects up to 15kg between floor height and overhead
  • carrying of objects weighing up to 15kg

Suitable duties

  • goals must be clear, realistic and achievable
  • must have 'buy-in' from the worker
  • worker helps to set the goals, and must be answerable if goals are not met (this allows barriers to RTW to be identified at an early stage and obstacles overcome)
  • workers need to understand they have an obligation to participate in rehabilitation and RTW as per Section 232 of the Workers' Compensation and Rehabilitation Act 2003 (the Act).

Carpenter return to work suggestions

Worker can begin with light duties and include more tasks as their capacity for work changes. We'll work with all parties, including the treating medical provider, employer and worker to ensure everyone is aware of where the worker is with their rehabilitation and stay at, or return to work.

Note: some tasks are dependent on worker's injury and capacity, and some tasks may require the assistance of a co-worker.

Host employment

In the event an employer is unable to provide suitable duties, a host placement may be required. If this is the case, the worker may be placed at a different employer in a graduated return to work plan until they're able to 'upgrade' back to his/her pre-injury role with their pre-injury employer.

WorkCover Queensland's Recover at Work program places injured workers in short term host employment with employers who have an established track record of successful return to work outcomes with their own workers.

More return to work resources