On construction jobs requiring overhead access, a self-propelled aerial work platform can be a cost-effective, efficient way to transport workers and tools to the work area. Of the four major types of aerial work platforms, telescopic booms and telescopic articulated booms are the most effective for construction site use. They have excellent vertical and horizontal reach capabilities and often can get to overhead areas that other means of access can't reach.

The telescopic boom platform was introduced to overcome the reach limitations of scissorlift and articulated platforms. Its boom can be raised from below ground level up to a 70 degree or 75 degree angle. The boom can also rotate 360 degrees. Most telescopic boom platforms have either two- or three-section booms. Two section models have maximum working heights of 30 to 50 feet and horizontal reaches of 20 to 38 feet. Three-section models have maximum working heights of 36 to 116 feet and horizontal reaches of 22.5 to 71 feet.

The telescopic articulated boom has a telescopic boom section connected to and elevated by an articulating riser boom. This permits raising the platform vertically then extending over obstructions. Because of this capability, telescopic articulated boom platforms are often called up-and-over platforms. Although these platforms can't reach as high vertically or as far horizontally as telescopic boom platforms, they can maneuver more easily on restricted jobsites.