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Working as a Lumber Grader

Lumber graders work for a whole smorgasbord of industries where they're responsible for looking for knots, holes and splits in lumber. Then they sort this lumber to be dryed, trimmed or manufactured.

Typically, a lumber grader will work at a sawmill, lumber yard or another commercial establishment carrying out these duties. If you pride yourself on how well you can access the wood grain, then maybe this job was made for you!

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a lumber grader. For example, did you know that they make an average of $14.32 an hour? That's $29,796 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow -14% and produce -7,400 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does a Lumber Grader Do

There are certain skills that many lumber graders 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 communication skills, detail oriented and physical strength.

When it comes to the most important skills required to be a lumber grader, we found that a lot of resumes listed 41.2% of lumber graders included tape measure, while 8.2% of resumes included safety meetings, and 7.5% of resumes included hardwood floors. Hard skills like these are helpful to have when it comes to performing essential job responsibilities.

When it comes to searching for a job, many search for a key term or phrase. Instead, it might be more helpful to search by industry, as you might be missing jobs that you never thought about in industries that you didn't even think offered positions related to the lumber grader job title. But what industry to start with? Most lumber graders actually find jobs in the manufacturing and retail industries.

How To Become a Lumber Grader

If you're interested in becoming a lumber grader, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 10.4% of lumber graders have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 1.2% of lumber graders have master's degrees. Even though some lumber graders have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a lumber grader. When we researched the most common majors for a lumber grader, we found that they most commonly earn high school diploma degrees or associate degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on lumber grader resumes include bachelor's degree degrees or diploma degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a lumber grader. In fact, many lumber grader jobs require experience in a role such as cashier. Meanwhile, many lumber graders also have previous career experience in roles such as assistant manager or customer service representative.

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Average Salary$29,796
Job Growth Rate-14%

Lumber Grader Career Paths

Top Careers Before Lumber Grader

Cashier
9.4 %

Top Careers After Lumber Grader

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Tell us your goals and we'll match you with the rights job to get there.

Average Salary for a Lumber Grader

Lumber Graders in America make an average salary of $29,796 per year or $14 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $53,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $16,000 per year.
Average Salary
$29,796

Best Paying Cities

0

Recently Added Salaries

Job TitleCompanyCompanyStart DateSalary
Lumber Grader
Lumber Grader
Hood Industries, Inc.
Hood Industries, Inc.
01/10/2021
01/10/2021
$30,72101/10/2021
$30,721
Lumber Grader
Lumber Grader
Tradesmen International, Inc.
Tradesmen International, Inc.
08/06/2019
08/06/2019
$37,56608/06/2019
$37,566
Lumber Grader
Lumber Grader
Stafford Inspection & Consulting Services, LLC
Stafford Inspection & Consulting Services, LLC
11/17/2010
11/17/2010
$17,30111/17/2010
$17,301
Lumber Grader
Lumber Grader
Stafford Inspection & Consulting Services, LLC
Stafford Inspection & Consulting Services, LLC
05/14/2010
05/14/2010
$17,30105/14/2010
$17,301

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Lumber Grader Demographics

Gender

male

81.2 %

female

15.7 %

unknown

3.1 %

Ethnicity

White

78.6 %

Black or African American

8.7 %

Hispanic or Latino

7.6 %

Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

50.0 %

Carrier

25.0 %

Vietnamese

25.0 %
See More Demographics

Lumber Grader Education

Degrees

High School Diploma

51.2 %

Associate

19.5 %

Certificate

12.2 %
Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Top Skills For a Lumber Grader

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, 41.2% of lumber graders listed tape measure on their resume, but soft skills such as communication skills and detail oriented are important as well.

  • Tape Measure, 41.2%
  • Safety Meetings, 8.2%
  • Hardwood Floors, 7.5%
  • Production Reports, 7.4%
  • TPI, 5.9%
  • Other Skills, 29.8%
  • See All Lumber Grader Skills

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Top Lumber Grader Employers

1. Georgia-Pacific
4.2
Avg. Salary: 
$49,241
Lumber Graders Hired: 
20+
2. International Paper
4.8
Avg. Salary: 
$41,146
Lumber Graders Hired: 
16+
3. Weyerhaeuser
4.7
Avg. Salary: 
$51,176
Lumber Graders Hired: 
14+
4. Sierra Pacific Industries
4.5
Avg. Salary: 
$21,122
Lumber Graders Hired: 
5+
5. C & D Lumber Co
3.3
Avg. Salary: 
$34,819
Lumber Graders Hired: 
5+
6. Armstrong World Industries
4.8
Avg. Salary: 
$31,179
Lumber Graders Hired: 
4+
Updated October 2, 2020