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Operator Trainee Careers

An operator trainee is someone who is learning how to perform a job by shadowing an experienced worker. They can work in a variety of industries and roles, from city wastewater municipalities to manufacturing plants. Their daily tasks will differ depending on the role they are training for. Some operator trainees learn how to operate heavy machinery such as Bobcats, while others spend their days learning how to maintain systems within a processing plant. Usually the position requires at least some hands-on knowledge and experience with tools. Operator trainees also need to be observant in order to learn from their supervisor. Sometimes, they have to do administrative tasks such as preparing progress reports.

The requirements to become an operator trainee will depend on the industry and position. While about half have a bachelor's degree, many others have only a high school diploma. They do not need much professional experience, although a relevant internship may be helpful.

Operator trainees earn an average salary of $32,173 a year. However, once they finish their traineeship and are promoted to a full-time position, they can earn much more.

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being an operator trainee. For example, did you know that they make an average of $16.46 an hour? That's $34,231 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 4% and produce 32,600 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does an Operator Trainee Do

There are certain skills that many operators trainee 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 coordination, mechanical skills and visual ability.

When it comes to the most important skills required to be an operator trainee, we found that a lot of resumes listed 17.4% of operators trainee included customer service, while 13.3% of resumes included hand tools, and 9.7% of resumes included cdl. 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 operator trainee job title. But what industry to start with? Most operators trainee actually find jobs in the manufacturing and retail industries.

How To Become an Operator Trainee

If you're interested in becoming an operator trainee, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 42.7% of operators trainee have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 15.0% of operators trainee have master's degrees. Even though most operators trainee 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 an operator trainee. When we researched the most common majors for an operator trainee, we found that they most commonly earn bachelor's degree degrees or high school diploma degrees. Other degrees that we often see on operator trainee resumes include master's degree degrees or associate degree degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become an operator trainee. In fact, many operator trainee jobs require experience in a role such as internship. Meanwhile, many operators trainee also have previous career experience in roles such as sales associate or trainee.

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Average Salary
$34,231
Average Salary
Job Growth Rate
4%
Job Growth Rate
Job Openings
27,726
Job Openings

Operator Trainee Career Paths

Top Careers Before Operator Trainee

Trainee
8.3 %

Top Careers After Operator Trainee

Operator
15.1 %

What is the right job for my career path?

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

Average Salary for an Operator Trainee

Operators Trainee in America make an average salary of $34,231 per year or $16 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $44,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $26,000 per year.
Average Salary
$34,231

Best Paying Cities

City
ascdesc
Average Salarydesc
Boulder, CO
Salary Range37k - 54k$45k$45,277
Sacramento, CA
Salary Range33k - 51k$42k$41,570
Spokane, WA
Salary Range33k - 46k$39k$39,461
Pensacola, FL
Salary Range29k - 44k$36k$36,048
Fremont, NE
Salary Range29k - 38k$34k$33,854
Fort Wayne, IN
Salary Range28k - 39k$33k$33,447
$26k
$54k

Recently Added Salaries

Job TitleCompanyascdescCompanyascdescStart DateascdescSalaryascdesc
Well Operator Trainee, I or II
Well Operator Trainee, I or II
Beaufort Jasper Water & Sewer Authority
Beaufort Jasper Water & Sewer Authority
01/31/2021
01/31/2021
$32,57801/31/2021
$32,578
Mechanical Operations Trainee
Mechanical Operations Trainee
Kelly Services
Kelly Services
01/27/2021
01/27/2021
$36,12601/27/2021
$36,126
Operations Trainee
Operations Trainee
Jackson Laboratory
Jackson Laboratory
01/26/2021
01/26/2021
$31,30501/26/2021
$31,305
Operator I Trainee
Operator I Trainee
The Birmingham Water Works Board
The Birmingham Water Works Board
01/26/2021
01/26/2021
$38,45701/26/2021
$38,457
Stormwater and Flood Operator Trainee and
Stormwater and Flood Operator Trainee and
City of Boulder
City of Boulder
01/17/2021
01/17/2021
$36,35601/17/2021
$36,356
See More Recent Salaries

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Operator Trainee Demographics

Gender

male

71.6 %

female

23.9 %

unknown

4.5 %

Ethnicity

White

58.8 %

Hispanic or Latino

18.3 %

Black or African American

12.5 %

Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

37.5 %

German

12.5 %

Portuguese

10.4 %
See More Demographics

Operator Trainee Education

Majors

Business
26.8 %
Finance
6.4 %

Degrees

Bachelors

42.7 %

High School Diploma

18.3 %

Masters

15.0 %
See More Education Info
Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Top Skills For an Operator Trainee

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, 17.4% of operators trainee listed customer service on their resume, but soft skills such as coordination and mechanical skills are important as well.

Best States For an Operator Trainee

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as an operator trainee. The best states for people in this position are Colorado, Nevada, Oregon, and Kansas. Operators trainee make the most in Colorado with an average salary of $45,339. Whereas in Nevada and Oregon, they would average $41,686 and $41,184, respectively. While operators trainee would only make an average of $40,897 in Kansas, 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. Minnesota

Total Operator Trainee Jobs:
719
Highest 10% Earn:
$50,000
Location Quotient:
1.13
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. Kansas

Total Operator Trainee Jobs:
257
Highest 10% Earn:
$54,000
Location Quotient:
0.89
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. North Dakota

Total Operator Trainee Jobs:
120
Highest 10% Earn:
$45,000
Location Quotient:
1.35
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
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Top Operator Trainee Employers

1. YRC Worldwide
4.6
Avg. Salary: 
$53,699
Operator Trainees Hired: 
17+
2. Burger King
4.5
Avg. Salary: 
$32,299
Operator Trainees Hired: 
13+
3. United States Army
4.0
Avg. Salary: 
$33,982
Operator Trainees Hired: 
11+
4. United States Department of Agriculture
4.4
Avg. Salary: 
$34,053
Operator Trainees Hired: 
7+
5. Chevron
5.0
Avg. Salary: 
$38,816
Operator Trainees Hired: 
7+
6. Kelly Services
4.5
Avg. Salary: 
$32,863
Operator Trainees Hired: 
7+
Updated October 2, 2020