If you are looking to join the prominent crane operating workforce or you are simply just interested in what crane operators do, here is your simple and easy guide.
First and foremost crane operators are expected to be able to perform the following duties:
- Operate cranes mounted on boats/barges to move and place equipment and materials
- Operate dragline cranes to expose coal seams and ore deposits at mines
- Assemble tower cranes on site
- Perform routine maintenance work such as cleaning and lubricating cranes.
- Operate mobile and tower cranes to lift, move, or place equipment and materials
- Perform pre-operational inspection, and calculate crane capacities and weight to prepare for rigging and hoisting
- Operate pile driving cranes to drive pilings into earth to provide support for buildings and other structures
Where do crane operators find work?
Not surprisingly 30% find employment working in construction. 25% are in primary metal manufacturing. Wholesale trade makes up another 8%, transportation and warehousing another 6%, and the final 6% are located in fabricated metal product manufacturing.
What can you expect to make:
The average hourly wage for crane operators is $21.59/hour, which is close to the average for all of the occupations in the trades, transport and equipment sector and very close to the average for all technical, professional, and skilled occupations.
Current Job Outlook:
The job outlook for Crane Operators is considered average because employment grew at a below-average rate last year, but because the retirement rate is above average, and the number of retiring workers contributes to job openings job outlook is expected to rise. Hourly wages ($21.59) is above the average ($18.07), and the rate of wage growth is close to the average.
Another important factor to consider in job outlook is technological advances, such as robotics and computer controls. These sectors will likely increase productivity in the coming years, unfortunately reducing overall demand for crane operators.