Explore Careers - Job Market Report
Machining tool operators set up and operate or tend metal-cutting machines designed for repetitive machining work. They are employed by metal products and other manufacturing companies and in machine shops. This unit group also includes workers who etch or chemically mill metal pieces.
CNC machining tool operator, aircraft parts etcher, boring mill operator – metal machining, lathe machining operator, machining tool operator, milling machine set-up operator, production gear cutter, production grinder operator – metal machining, radial drill operator – metal machining.
- Study job orders and interpret blueprints to determine machining operations to be performed
- Set up and operate machine tools to perform repetitive machining operations, such as turning, milling, drilling, boring, planing, honing, broaching, grinding or other machining operations
- Verify dimensions of parts machined using micrometers, callipers and other precision measuring instruments
- Prepare etching solution and immerse metal parts or workpiece in etching solution to remove unwanted portions
- Perform routine maintenance on equipment and machinery
- May enter codes specifying speed, feed and cut of the toolpath for computer numerical controlled (CNC) machine tools.
Education & Job Requirements for Machining Tool Operators in Notre Dame-Central-Bonavista Bay Region
Education and job requirements can vary by region. Workers in regulated occupations require a licence to work legally. Workers in non-regulated occupations do not require a licence, but employers may have other certification requirements.
Employment requirements are prerequisites generally needed to enter an occupation.
- Some secondary school education is required.
- College or other courses in machining may be required.
- Several months of on-the-job training are provided.
- Senior positions in this unit group, such as set-up operator, require experience as a machine operator.
Regulation by Province/Territory
Some provinces and territories regulate certain professions and trades while others do not. If you have a licence to work in one province, your licence may not be accepted in other provinces or territories. Consult the table below to determine in which province or territory your occupation/trade is regulated.
|Province and Territory||Regulation|
|Newfoundland and Labrador||
|Prince Edward Island||
The essential skills profiles can:
- Help determine, based on skill sets, which career may best suit a particular individual.
- Assist job seekers to write a résumé or prepare for a job interview.
- Help employers to create a job posting.
Employers place a strong emphasis on essential skills in the workplace. Essential skills are used in nearly every occupation, and are seen as “building blocks” because people build on them to learn all other skills.
Each profile contains a list of example tasks that illustrate how each of the 9 essential skill is generally performed by the majority of workers in an occupation. The estimated complexity levels for each task, between 1 (basic) and 5 (advanced), may vary based on the requirements of the workplace.
Machining Tool Operators
Machining tool operators set-up and operate or tend metal-cutting machines designed for repetitive machining work.
- Read short notes on drawings and labels, e.g. read comments on drawings to learn about design changes to products. (1)
- Read short notes in logbooks and forms, e.g. read work orders to learn about delivery deadlines and special instructions. (1)
- Read notices and bulletins, e.g. read notices from employers to learn about upcoming meetings and changes to operating procedures. (2)
- Read a variety of instructions and procedures, e.g. read step-by-step instructions for the operation of equipment, such as drill presses. (2)
- Read workplace safety materials, e.g. read Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) to understand the chemical composition of solvents and their possible hazards. (2)
- Read trade magazines, brochures and website articles to learn about new products and stay up-to-date on new technology. (3)
- Read a variety of manuals, e.g. read manuals to learn how to set-up, operate and maintain equipment, such as computer numerically controlled lathes. (3)
- Observe symbols, icons and signs, e.g. scan symbols on equipment to identify safety concerns, such as noise and electrical hazards. (1)
- View meters and digital readouts, e.g. scan digital readouts on numerically controlled equipment to determine settings. (1)
- May locate data in lists and schedules, e.g. scan lists to locate part numbers, sizes and quantities in suppliers’ product lists. (2)
- Locate the grade of metals and their alloys using colour code charts. (2)
- Complete a variety of forms, e.g. enter data, such as dates, times, quantities and identification numbers, in job cards, work orders and defect reports. (2)
- Locate data, such as specifications, speeds, feed rates, metal classifications, identification numbers, times and material coefficients, in complex tables, e.g. scan specification tables to determine the material requirements for projects. (3)
- Study assembly drawings, e.g. scan assembly drawings to learn how to disassemble and assemble equipment. (3)
- Interpret and locate data in complex drawings, such as blueprints, e.g. scan complex scale drawings to determine the angle and position of boreholes. (4)
- Write reminders and short notes, e.g. write short notes to co-workers to inform them about the status of projects. (1)
- Write comments in forms, e.g. write comments in defect and non-conformity reports to describe defects and corrective actions taken. (2)
- Write text entries in forms to describe events leading up to incidents or accidents, e.g. write about injuries and events when completing workers' compensation board forms. (2)
- Measure distances, angles and volumes using basic measuring tools, such as tape measures, digital protractors and calibrated beakers. (1)
- Compare measurements of angles, dimensions and clearances to specifications. (1)
- Estimate metal shrinkage rates when cooled. (1)
- Calculate material requirements by totaling material requirements and making allowances for wastage, take-off and make-up measurements. (2)
- Calculate summary measures, e.g. calculate the average number of products produced per hour and shift. (2)
- Estimate the time needed to carry out the machining operations described in customers' specification sheets, e.g. use estimates to project the time needed to complete batch lots. (2)
- May use formulae to calculate cutting speeds, taking into account cutting diameter, material being machined and type of tool being used. (3)
- Use precise measuring tools, e.g. use dial calipers and micrometers to measure dimensions, such as inside and outside diameters to 1/10,000 of an inch. (3)
- Lay out materials using geometric construction methods, e.g. use concepts, such as symmetry and parallelism, to layout machining projects. (4)
- May transpose measurements from scale drawings into machine operating code, e.g. program computer numerically controlled machine tools, specifying movement along three axes to create the specified shape. (4)
- May use trigonometry and triangle relationships to calculate angles, tapers and faces when machining complex parts. (5)
- Speak to suppliers to learn about products, prices and delivery schedules. (1)
- Exchange information with co-workers, e.g. talk with co-workers about project requirements and with quality control personnel about the quality of parts completed. (2)
- May talk to customers, e.g. may talk to customers to clarify specifications and discuss project outcomes. (2)
- May explain the use of equipment, such as computer numerically controlled drill presses and lathes, to new employees. (3)
- Encounter technical drawings with missing specifications and errors. They report the missing specifications and errors to supervisors and complete other tasks until the missing information is acquired and errors are corrected. (1)
- Decide the order of tasks and their priorities. They decide which procedure to follow when completing projects. (1)
- Encounter delays due to equipment breakdowns and material shortages. They inform supervisors of the issue, assist with repairs if possible and perform other work until repairs are completed and the necessary materials arrive. (2)
- Experience product defects. They consult with supervisors to determine next steps, adjust equipment settings and complete product defect reports. (2)
- Choose methods and materials for projects. They consider project specifications and the availability of parts and supplies. (2)
- Decide the most efficient use of materials during construction to minimize waste. (2)
- Evaluate the feasibility of proposed projects. They consider project specifications, the availability of equipment and their ability to perform the work. (2)
- Evaluate the safety of workplaces and work procedures. They consider hazards, such as slippery work surfaces. (2)
- Judge the performance of equipment, such as computer numerically controlled lathes. (2)
- Plan the order of tasks to complete the jobs assigned. Much of the planning is short range, focusing on organizing the workstation, doing set-up, programming the machine and verifying hole placement. They may interrupt their schedule to help others or complete rush jobs. (2)
- Locate project specifications by referring to technical drawings and by speaking with customers and co-workers, such as supervisors. (2)
- Learn about new products by reading brochures and information on websites and speaking with suppliers. (2)
- Find information on cutting speeds and feed rates by speaking with suppliers and co-workers and by scanning reference and specification tables. (2)
- Evaluate the quality of completed projects. They consider factors, such as the conformity of dimensions to project specifications. (3)
- May input data to operate numerically controlled equipment, such as lathes and cutting machines. (1)
- May use calculators and personal digital assistant (PDA) devices to complete numeracy-related tasks, such as calculating material requirements. (1)
- Use computer-assisted design (CAD) software to access, modify and print technical drawings. (2)
- May use databases to query inventories and locate parts specifications and details of previously completed projects. (2)
- May use the Internet to access training courses and seminars offered by training institutions, unions, suppliers and employers. (2)
- May use Internet browsers and search engines to locate information, such as equipment and supply specifications. (2)
Machining tool operators work independently. They are part of a team that includes mechanics, welders, machinists, fellow operators and management. Team members co-ordinate their efforts to ensure machines are used efficiently and work priorities are well managed.Continuous Learning
Machining tool operators continue to learn new specifications and procedures through on-the-job training and experience. They receive training in first aid and the Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS).
All essential skills are affected by the introduction of technology in the workplace. Machining tool operators' ability to adapt to new technologies is strongly related to their skill levels across the essential skills, including reading, writing, thinking and communication skills. Technologies are transforming the ways in which workers obtain, process and communicate information, and the types of skills needed to perform in their jobs. In particular, the increased use of computer-assisted design (CAD), manufacturing and machining software requires machining tool operators to develop digital skills in order to stay current. For example, workers may need the skills to use increasingly complex software applications, such as CAD software to access, modify and print technical drawings; or to input data in order to operate numerically controlled equipment, such as lathes and cutting machines. At the same time, software and hardware developers are improving ease of use for workers through touch-screen technology, built-in self-help tutorials and user-friendly software applications.
Technology in the workplace further affects the complexity of tasks related to the essential skills required for this occupation. While CAD software has increased the complexity of scale drawings, electronic databases and keyword search functions can make it easier to find information, such as specifications. Workers can complete documents (e.g. work orders) or calculate costs, material requirements, conversions, volumes, rates, and offsets with speed and accuracy using Web-based applications, specialized software that inputs data automatically, and hand-held devices, such as calculators and personal digital assistants (PDAs).
Information for Newcomers
Provincial credential assessment services assess academic credentials for a fee. Contact a regulatory body or other organization to determine if you need an assessment before spending money on one that is not required or recognized.
The assessment will tell you how your education compares with educational standards in the province or territory where you are planning to settle can help you in your job search.
- British Columbia - International Credential Evaluation Service (ICES)
- Alberta - International Qualifications Assessment Service (IQAS)
- Saskatchewan - International Qualifications Assessment Service The Government of Saskatchewan provides this service through an interprovincial agreement with the Government of Alberta.
- Manitoba - Academic Credentials Assessment Service – Manitoba (ACAS)
- Québec - Service des évaluations comparatives d’études (SECE)
- Northwest Territories - International Qualifications Assessment Service (IQAS). The Government of the Northwest Territories provides this service through an interprovincial agreement with the Government of Alberta.
- Date Modified: