iExplore Manufacturing Careers

Industrial Machine Operator

If you like working with power tools and have mechanical skills, you can make it as an industrial machine operator! This is a great career choice with entry-level positions or apprenticeships where you’re paid to learn the job. Industrial machine operators set up and operate equipment that cuts, shapes and forms different materials. You can work with metal from thick structural steel to high-grade stainless steel or aluminum. Operators are needed in factories that produce wood products, too, from cabinets to building materials. The food industry relies on the skills of form and fill machine operators. These workers are responsible for keeping production lines running smoothly. Tasks may include operating packing equipment and changing packaging materials as different products are put on-line: working to maintain a clean, safe and efficient operation.

Every machine needs the skilled hand of a good operator. In the metal fabrication industry, you might find yourself working with a press brake to cut large sheets of metal to size before they go into the production line. You can operate a rolling machine to transform flat material into a specific curved configuration or angle roll the metal. Shearers cut material into specified shapes. The operator controls the process and makes sure that the work is up to company standards.

There are so many ways to make it in this occupation. And each job puts you at the controls of a machine designed to perform an extremely important and necessary task. The products you help manufacture may be used in the energy industry, a fast growing market that is keeping metal fabrication operations busy with high demand. Your work may find its way into a food processing plant or in the telecommunications business. Wherever wood, metal or plastic is necessary to get a job done, there’s an industrial machine operator who has contributed to a job done well.

The number of new jobs for industrial machine operators is increasing steadily. In 2010 there were approximately one million employed in the united states. With a growth rate of 6% expected by 2020, that translates into over 56,000 new positions opening up for industrial machine operators. Average pay for this occupation in south central Pennsylvania is over $36,000 a year. Many of these jobs offer overtime opportunities as well as additional benefits such as retirement programs. An increase in pay is possible for workers who are motivated to continue their training with certification in their field. The possibilities are available to you in this job. On the job training, security and a good pay check. This is a career choice where you can make it BIG… as an industrial machine operator.