Funeral Director/Mortician  What They Do

Just the Facts


Morticians, Undertakers, and Funeral Directors Career Video



Performs various tasks to arrange and direct funeral services, such as coordinating transportation of body to mortuary, interviewing family or other authorized person to arrange details, selecting pallbearers, aiding with the selection of officials for religious rites, and providing transportation for mourners.

This career is part of the Human Services cluster Personal Care Services pathway.


A person in this career:

  • Obtains information needed to complete legal documents, such as death certificates or burial permits.
  • Consults with families or friends of the deceased to arrange funeral details, such as obituary notice wording, casket selection, or plans for services.
  • Performs embalming duties as necessary.
  • Oversees the preparation and care of the remains of people who have died.
  • Contacts cemeteries to schedule the opening and closing of graves.
  • Removes deceased remains from place of death.
  • Arranges for clergy members to perform needed services.
  • Provides information on funeral service options, products, or merchandise and maintains a casket display area.
  • Offers counsel and comfort to bereaved families or friends.
  • Maintains financial records, orders merchandise, or prepares accounts.

Insider Info

Dig into the details and check out what people in this job have to say about their work.



Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would often handle loads up to 10 lbs., sometimes up to 20 lbs. You might do a lot of walking or standing, or you might sit but use your arms and legs to control machines, equipment or tools.
  • Work in this occupation involves use of protective items such as safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hearing protection, a hard hat, or personal flotation devices
  • Exposure to pollutants, gases, dust, fumes, odors, poor ventilation, etc.
  • Exposed to disease and infections more than once a month through work such as patient care, laboratory work, and sanitation control
  • Conditions are very hot (above 90 F) or very cold (under 32 F)
  • Exposed to conditions such as high voltage electricity, combustibles, explosives, and chemicals more than once a month
  • Work in this occupation requires being inside most of the time
  • Work in this occupation requires being outside most of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves sitting more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves standing more than one-third of the time

Working in this career involves (physical activities):

  • Seeing clearly up close
  • Speaking clearly enough to be able to be understood by others
  • Identifying and understanding the speech of another person

Work Hours and Travel

  • Irregular hours
  • Weekend work

Specialty and Similar Careers

Careers that are more detailed or close to this career:

  • Funeral Arrangement Director --
  • Funeral Arranger --
  • Funeral Counselor --
  • Funeral Director --
  • Funeral Location Manager --
  • Funeral Pre-Need Consultant --
  • Funeral Prearrangement Counselor --
  • Licensed Funeral Director --
  • Licensed Mortician --
  • Mortician -- Oversees funeral rituals and prepares the body of the deceased for a final viewing.