As more baby boomers retire, more equipment operator jobs are opening up. In fact, 25% of the industry will be opened up with the boomers' retirement. That means lots of job openings and plenty of job opportunities for you to take advantage of. If there was ever a right time for you to become an equipment operator, now is that time.

Another bonus of being an equipment operator is that you don't need extra education or experience to get in the drivers seat. In fact, most employers only require you to take a three-week training course before setting you loose on the job. That means in three weeks, you'll be sitting behind the wheel of that heavy-duty equipment. And with today's technology, it's basically as easy as driving a car.

Sounds like an easy enough job, right? But it's not too easy that it's boring. Every day is going to present a new challenge to you. You'll come into work each day not knowing exactly what to expect. And that's because of the variety of heavy equipment that you'll be operating and the different jobs each equipment performs. This is one job that'll make your kids proud.

What Does an Equipment Operator Do

Construction equipment operators drive, maneuver, or control the heavy machinery used to construct roads, bridges, buildings, and other structures.

Learn more about what an Equipment Operator does

How To Become an Equipment Operator

Many workers learn equipment operation on the job after earning a high school diploma or equivalent, while others learn through an apprenticeship or by attending vocational schools.

Learn More About How To Become an Equipment Operator

Equipment Operator Career Paths

Average Salary for an Equipment Operator

Equipment Operators in America make an average salary of $31,739 per year or $15 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $40,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $24,000 per year.
Average Equipment Operator Salary
$31,739 Yearly
$15.26 hourly
$24,000
10 %
$31,000
Median
$40,000
90 %

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Equipment Operator Education

Equipment Operator Majors

19.9 %

Equipment Operator Degrees

High School Diploma

46.2 %

Associate

18.9 %

Bachelors

17.7 %

Top Skills For an Equipment Operator

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 13.6% of equipment operators listed heavy equipment on their resume, but soft skills such as physical strength and unafraid of heights are important as well.

Choose From 10+ Customizable Equipment Operator Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Equipment Operator templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Equipment Operator resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

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Equipment Operator Demographics

Equipment Operator Gender Distribution

Male
Male
93%
Female
Female
7%

After extensive research and analysis, Zippia's data science team found that:

  • Among equipment operators, 7.0% of them are women, while 93.0% are men.

  • The most common race/ethnicity among equipment operators is White, which makes up 72.2% of all equipment operators.

  • The most common foreign language among equipment operators is Spanish at 73.8%.

Online Courses For Equipment Operator That You May Like

Advertising Disclosure  The courses listed below are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the course, we may receive a commission.
Truck Dispatcher Training (STEP BY STEP, work independently)
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FULL COURSE- How to Become a Truck Dispatcher, how to book loads for semi-trucks and start your own Dispatch Company...

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Learn how electrical equipments operate and how they fit together into a network...

Biomedical Equipment Technician Training: Maintenance & Repair
edX (Global)

Maintaining and troubleshooting sophisticated medical instruments is not an easy task. In order to deliver effective care, the technician requires the knowledge of different aspects of biology and engineering. The different devices work in so many different ways and the literature about repair and troubleshooting is often hard to come by. It can be quite frustrating to search for solutions every time the operator encounters a problem. There is added pressure because the availability of medical...

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Best States For an Equipment Operator

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as an equipment operator. The best states for people in this position are Connecticut, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and California. Equipment operators make the most in Connecticut with an average salary of $45,629. Whereas in New Hampshire and Massachusetts, they would average $44,909 and $44,767, respectively. While equipment operators would only make an average of $41,909 in California, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Massachusetts

Total Equipment Operator Jobs:
1,376
Highest 10% Earn:
$56,000
Location Quotient:
2.88 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. New Jersey

Total Equipment Operator Jobs:
969
Highest 10% Earn:
$52,000
Location Quotient:
2.34 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Alaska

Total Equipment Operator Jobs:
130
Highest 10% Earn:
$42,000
Location Quotient:
2.99 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
Full List Of Best States For Equipment Operators

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Top Equipment Operator Employers

Most Common Employers For Equipment Operator

Rank  Company  Average Salary  Hourly Rate  Job Openings  
1Halliburton$42,332$20.35526
2Baker Hughes$42,316$20.34787
3Trican Well Service$41,505$19.95226
4Schlumberger$40,283$19.371,349
5NexTier Oilfield Solutions$40,181$19.32144
6Cudd Energy Services$39,763$19.12193
7Pioneer Natural Resources$37,140$17.86120
8Performance Technologies$36,511$17.55195
9KDOT$36,434$17.52138
10BJ Energy Solutions$35,802$17.21426

Equipment Operator Videos

Becoming an Equipment Operator FAQs

How long does it take to become an Equipment Operator?

It takes 4 years of professional experience to become an equipment operator. That is the time it takes to learn specific equipment operator skills, but does not account for time spent in formal education.

Do heavy equipment operators make good money?

Yes, heavy equipment operators make good money. A heavy equipment operator on average makes $65,500 a year, which is roughly $10,000 higher than the national wage average. A heavy equipment operator can make anywhere between $54,000 and $75,000, with outliers on either side.

Is an interaction designer the same as a UX designer?

No, an interaction designer is not necessarily the same as a UX designer. Although they are often used interchangeably, they generally focus on the overall user experience design process.

What skills do you need to be an equipment operator?

The skills needed to be an equipment operator focus mainly on proper operating procedures, attention to detail, and procedural knowledge, including any safety protocols.

The best equipment operators are those who are self-motivated with strong problem-solving abilities. Someone who takes personal pride in their work and has a strict attention to detail. One reason for this is that skilled equipment operators must pick up the movements and flow of the operation quickly.

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