Tile Setter Job Description [Updated for 2024]

tile setter job description

In the world of construction and design, the demand for skilled tile setters is ever increasing.

As interior design trends evolve, so does the need for professionals who can meticulously craft, install and maintain the tilework that enhances our homes and businesses.

But what exactly is expected from a tile setter?

Whether you are:

  • A job seeker looking to understand the core of this role,
  • A hiring manager outlining the perfect candidate,
  • Or simply fascinated by the artistry of tile setting,

You’ve come to the right place.

Today, we present a comprehensive tile setter job description template, created for effortless posting on job boards or career sites.

Let’s dive right in.

Tile Setter Duties and Responsibilities

Tile Setters are specialized workers who install tiles on walls, floors, and other surfaces in buildings and residences.

They must be proficient in a variety of tasks, including cutting and shaping tiles, preparing surfaces, and applying grout.

The daily duties and responsibilities of a Tile Setter include:

  • Interpreting blueprints and building specifications to map layout for tiles, marbles, or granite.
  • Measuring and marking surfaces to be tiled, following blueprints.
  • Aligning tiles and straightening them with straightedges, levels, and squares to ensure patterns are even and precise.
  • Cutting and shaping tiles to fit around obstacles and into odd spaces and corners, using hand and power cutting tools.
  • Preparing surfaces for tiling by attaching lath or waterproof paper, or by applying a cement mortar coat onto a metal screen.
  • Spreading mastic or other adhesive base on roof deck to form base for promenade tile, using serrated spreader.
  • Mixing, applying, and spreading plaster, concrete, mortar, cement, mastic, glue or other adhesives to form a bed for the tiles using brush, trowel & spatula.
  • Setting tiles in position and applying pressure to affix tiles to base.
  • Applying grout with a rubber trowel, wiping off excess, and polishing tiles.
  • Keeping work area clean, safe, and organized.


Tile Setter Job Description Template

Job Brief

We are seeking a skilled tile setter to join our team.

The successful candidate will have experience in cutting and laying tiles for floors, walls and special installations like showers and bathtubs.

Tile setters are responsible for cutting tiles to fit spaces, installing tiles in a straight line and making sure the tiles stay in place until they set.

Our ideal candidates have exceptional attention to detail, physical strength and stamina, and familiarity with different types of tiles and installation tools.



  • Prepare surfaces for tiling, including removing old tiles and filling gaps.
  • Cut tiles to size and shape using tile cutters and power saws.
  • Lay out tiles accurately and professionally, ensuring even placement and alignment.
  • Apply adhesive substances like cement to tiles and arrange them on surfaces.
  • Use spacers to ensure even application and alignment of tiles.
  • Grout tile seams and clean excess grout from tiles.
  • Seal tile with appropriate sealant when required.
  • Repair or replace tiles as needed.
  • Ensure all safety protocols and procedures are followed during work.



  • Proven work experience as a tile setter.
  • High school diploma or equivalent. Trade school or apprenticeship completion preferred.
  • Knowledge of various types of tiles and the techniques for cutting and installing them.
  • Excellent attention to detail.
  • Physical strength and stamina to carry heavy tiles and equipment.
  • Ability to work on knees for extended periods.
  • Experience with power tools and hand tools.



  • 401(k)
  • Health insurance
  • Dental insurance
  • Retirement plan
  • Paid time off
  • Professional development opportunities


Additional Information

  • Job Title: Tile Setter
  • Work Environment: Varies based on project needs. May include residential or commercial locations, and indoor or outdoor work. Physical work is required.
  • Reporting Structure: Reports to the Construction Site Supervisor or Project Manager.
  • Salary: Salary is based upon candidate experience and qualifications, as well as market and business considerations.
  • Pay Range: $30,000 minimum to $60,000 maximum
  • Location: [City, State] (specify the location or indicate if travel is required)
  • Employment Type: Full-time
  • Equal Opportunity Statement: We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status.
  • Application Instructions: Please submit your resume and a cover letter outlining your qualifications and experience to [email address or application portal].


What Does a Tile Setter Do?

Tile Setters, also known as Tile Installers, work in the construction industry where they lay tiles on surfaces like floors, walls, ceilings, and patios.

This profession is commonly self-employed, although they may also be employed by construction companies or tile installation companies.

Their main responsibility is to measure and cut tiles to fit the required space.

They use tools such as tile cutters and wet saws to cut and shape tiles to fit corners, outlets, and other obstructions.

Tile Setters are also responsible for preparing surfaces prior to tile installation.

This may involve removing old tiles, cleaning surfaces, filling gaps and holes, or smoothing and leveling surfaces.

They then use various adhesives to secure the tiles to the surface.

Once the tiles are placed, Tile Setters apply grout between the tiles, wipe away excess grout, and apply sealants to the surface to make the tiles resistant to water and stains.

In addition to these tasks, Tile Setters may also provide their clients with guidance on the best type of tile to use for a particular application, based on factors such as durability, aesthetics, cost, and the client’s preferences.

Lastly, they are also responsible for maintaining a safe working environment, which includes cleaning up after each job and properly disposing of used materials.


Tile Setter Qualifications and Skills

A competent Tile Setter should possess skills and qualifications that align with your job description, such as:

  • Manual dexterity and physical fitness to handle the physical demands of the job, which may include standing, kneeling, bending, and lifting heavy materials.
  • Technical skills to accurately measure, cut, and install tiles while maintaining aesthetic consistency and structural integrity.
  • Attention to detail and precision to ensure tiles are aligned and patterns are consistent.
  • Problem-solving skills to overcome unexpected challenges that may occur during the installation process, such as uneven surfaces or broken tiles.
  • Interpersonal and communication skills to effectively collaborate with clients, architects, and other construction professionals, and to understand and execute client requests.
  • Knowledge of building codes and safety regulations to ensure all work meets legal requirements.
  • Customer service skills to provide a satisfying experience for the client, including respecting their property and cleaning up after completing the job.
  • Knowledge of various types of tiles, grouts, and adhesives to choose the best materials for each job.


Tile Setter Experience Requirements

Tile Setters typically start their career by attending a vocational school or through an apprenticeship program where they learn the basics of tile setting, including understanding materials, tools, and techniques.

Many tile setters gain their initial experience by working as helpers to experienced tile setters.

This provides them with hands-on experience in handling different types of materials, using various tools, and mastering the techniques of tile setting.

Entry-level tile setters may have 1 to 2 years of experience, often obtained through on-the-job training or internships.

These professionals learn to work with different types of tiles, grouts, and adhesives, and gain experience in cutting, sizing, and laying tiles.

Those with 3 to 5 years of experience may have a deeper understanding of complex tile laying patterns and may be able to handle more complex projects such as designing and laying intricate tile patterns or working with exotic materials.

Tile setters with more than 5 years of experience often have extensive knowledge of the trade and may have experience leading a team or managing projects.

They may be ready for supervisory roles or to start their own tile setting business.


Tile Setter Education and Training Requirements

Tile Setters typically learn their trade through an apprenticeship program, which may last from 2 to 4 years.

These programs combine classroom instruction with practical, hands-on training.

Participants learn a variety of skills including how to set, cut, and install tiles, as well as how to apply grout and sealants.

While a high school diploma is not always necessary, it can be beneficial.

High school courses in mathematics, drawing, and vocational technology can provide a good foundation for those interested in becoming Tile Setters.

There are no specific licensing requirements for Tile Setters, however, in some states, contractors who hire Tile Setters must be licensed.

Certification is not required but can demonstrate competence and lead to advancement.

The Ceramic Tile Education Foundation (CTEF) offers the Certified Tile Installer (CTI) certification for workers with at least two years of experience.

It is also beneficial for Tile Setters to have physical stamina and strength, as the job can be physically demanding, with much bending, kneeling, and reaching involved.

Continuing education opportunities are available and can help Tile Setters stay up-to-date with new techniques and materials in the industry.


Tile Setter Salary Expectations

The average wage for a Tile Setter is $20.68 (USD) per hour.

However, this can vary significantly based on factors such as the setter’s level of experience, the region in which they are employed, and the company for which they work.


Tile Setter Job Description FAQs

What skills does a Tile Setter need?

Tile Setters should possess strong attention to detail for precise tile alignment and grout application.

Good manual dexterity and physical stamina are also important as the job often involves lifting heavy materials and working on knees for extended periods.

Understanding of color schemes and design to guide customers in their choice of tiles is also key.

Moreover, they should have strong math skills for accurate tile measurements and cuts.


Do Tile Setters require any specific education or certification?

No specific education is required to become a Tile Setter.

However, they typically learn the trade through on-the-job training or apprenticeships.

Voluntary certification is available through organizations like the Ceramic Tile Education Foundation, which can enhance employability.


What should you look for in a Tile Setter’s resume?

A Tile Setter’s resume should show experience in tile setting, including different kinds of tiles like ceramic, porcelain, and natural stone.

Proficiency in using tile-setting tools and equipment, and experience with grouting and sealing procedures is a plus.

Any formal apprenticeships or certifications in the field should be highlighted.


What qualities make a good Tile Setter?

A good Tile Setter should be dependable, detail-oriented, and able to work well under pressure to meet deadlines.

They should have a sense of creativity to help clients with design decisions.

Good physical strength and stamina are also important as the job often involves heavy lifting and bending.

They should also have a good understanding of safety procedures to avoid accidents on the job.


Is it difficult to hire Tile Setters?

The difficulty in hiring a Tile Setter may depend on the job market and the specific requirements of the role.

In areas where construction and renovation are booming, it might be more challenging to find experienced Tile Setters.

It can also be harder to find candidates with specialized skills, such as experience with intricate tile designs or specific types of tile.



And there you have it.

Today, we’ve uncovered the true essence of what it means to be a tile setter.


It’s not just about laying tiles.

It’s about crafting beautiful and functional spaces, one tile at a time.

With our handy tile setter job description template and real-world examples, you’re ready to step into this exciting field.

But why stop there?

Dig deeper with our job description generator. It’s your gateway to creating highly precise listings or sharpening your resume to perfection.


Every tile set is a piece of a larger, more beautiful mosaic.

Let’s build that future. Together.

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