The role of a generator operator is one of the most mission-critical roles in a power plant. Without them, a power plant will cease to operate, which tells just how important generator operators are in the industry.

A generator operator is responsible for controlling, operating, and maintaining machinery to produce electric power. Their duties typically include adjusting the controls of generators to generate power or distribute it, overseeing plant operations, maintaining and inspecting power plant equipment, as well as identifying deviations in operations and making necessary steps to correct them. That said, one needs to have good mechanical, analytical, and problem-solving skills to become a generator operator. They must also be physically fit due to the increased physical demands of the job.

To qualify as a generator operator, one is typically required to be a qualified electrician. Most generator operators start in entry-level positions in the electrical department and work their way up from there. And since there is no formal education requirement for this position, the majority of generator operators have high school diplomas or GEDs.

In this job, one can expect to make around $14.93 an hour or $31,057 per year. Almost every industry needs generator operators, hence, jobs are expected to grow as much as 6% between 2018 to 2028.

What Does a Generator Operator Do

There are certain skills that many generator operators have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed leadership skills, management skills and problem-solving skills.

Learn more about what a Generator Operator does

How To Become a Generator Operator

If you're interested in becoming a generator operator, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 31.8% of generator operators have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 3.0% of generator operators have master's degrees. Even though some generator operators have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Learn More About How To Become a Generator Operator

Generator Operator Career Paths

Average Salary for a Generator Operator

Generator Operators in America make an average salary of $31,481 per year or $15 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $38,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $25,000 per year.
Average Generator Operator Salary
$31,481 Yearly
$15.14 hourly
$25,000
10 %
$31,000
Median
$38,000
90 %

What Am I Worth?

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Generator Operator Education

Generator Operator Majors

24.8 %

Generator Operator Degrees

Bachelors

31.8 %

High School Diploma

30.9 %

Associate

19.6 %

Top Colleges for Generator Operators

1. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,584
Enrollment
10,764

2. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL • Private

In-State Tuition
$54,568
Enrollment
8,451

3. University of Southern California

Los Angeles, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$56,225
Enrollment
19,548

4. New York University

New York, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,828
Enrollment
26,339

5. Pennsylvania State University

University Park, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$18,454
Enrollment
40,108

6. University of Texas at Austin

Austin, TX • Private

In-State Tuition
$10,610
Enrollment
40,329

7. SUNY at Binghamton

Vestal, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$9,808
Enrollment
13,990

8. Northeastern University

Boston, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,522
Enrollment
13,760

9. Bentley University

Waltham, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$49,880
Enrollment
4,177

10. Lehigh University

Bethlehem, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$52,930
Enrollment
5,030

Top Skills For a Generator 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, 19.2% of generator operators listed daily operations on their resume, but soft skills such as leadership skills and management skills are important as well.

Choose From 10+ Customizable Generator Operator Resume templates

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

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Generator Operator Resume
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Generator Operator Demographics

Generator Operator Gender Distribution

Male
Male
75%
Female
Female
25%

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

  • Among generator operators, 25.3% of them are women, while 74.7% are men.

  • The most common race/ethnicity among generator operators is White, which makes up 71.5% of all generator operators.

  • The most common foreign language among generator operators is Spanish at 60.0%.

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Best States For a Generator Operator

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a generator operator. The best states for people in this position are New York, Washington, Alaska, and Wisconsin. Generator operators make the most in New York with an average salary of $38,861. Whereas in Washington and Alaska, they would average $37,700 and $36,808, respectively. While generator operators would only make an average of $36,596 in Wisconsin, 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. Alaska

Total Generator Operator Jobs:
96
Highest 10% Earn:
$41,000
Location Quotient:
3.12

2. Wisconsin

Total Generator Operator Jobs:
381
Highest 10% Earn:
$44,000
Location Quotient:
1.87

3. Massachusetts

Total Generator Operator Jobs:
1,111
Highest 10% Earn:
$41,000
Location Quotient:
3.28
Full List Of Best States For Generator Operators

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Top Generator Operator Employers

Most Common Employers For Generator Operator

Rank  Company  Average Salary  Hourly Rate  Job Openings  
1IBM$38,754$18.635
2General Electric$37,800$18.176
3Cargill$37,674$18.114
4Baker Hughes$37,304$17.9319
5Schlumberger$36,671$17.6320
6Lucent$35,381$17.014
7Tenneco$35,198$16.9281
8Faurecia Automotive Seating$34,971$16.816
9Duke Energy$33,708$16.215
10DuPont$33,088$15.9122

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