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Working as a Tractor Operator

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a tractor operator. For example, did you know that they make an average of $14.7 an hour? That's $30,579 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 a Tractor Operator Do

There are certain skills that many tractor 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 mechanical skills, visual ability and communication skills.

When it comes to the most important skills required to be a tractor operator, we found that a lot of resumes listed 16.0% of tractor operators included heavy equipment, while 15.5% of resumes included farm tractor, and 8.6% of resumes included safety procedures. 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 tractor operator job title. But what industry to start with? Most tractor operators actually find jobs in the construction and manufacturing industries.

How To Become a Tractor Operator

If you're interested in becoming a tractor operator, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 13.4% of tractor operators have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 0.5% of tractor operators have master's degrees. Even though some tractor operators 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 tractor operator. When we researched the most common majors for a tractor operator, we found that they most commonly earn high school diploma degrees or bachelor's degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on tractor operator resumes include associate degree degrees or diploma degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a tractor operator. In fact, many tractor operator jobs require experience in a role such as forklift operator. Meanwhile, many tractor operators also have previous career experience in roles such as cashier or truck driver.

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Average Salary$30,579
Job Growth Rate4%

Tractor Operator Jobs

Tractor Operator Career Paths

Top Careers Before Tractor Operator

Top Careers After Tractor Operator

Driver
7.5%

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

Average Salary for a Tractor Operator

Tractor Operators in America make an average salary of $30,579 per year or $15 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $35,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $25,000 per year.
Average Salary
$30,579

Best Paying Cities

Average Salary
Salary Range31k - 45k$38k$37,573
Salary Range30k - 45k$37k$36,929
Salary Range28k - 41k$34k$34,297
Salary Range26k - 38k$32k$32,098
Salary Range25k - 38k$31k$31,452
Salary Range25k - 36k$31k$30,600
$23k
$45k

Recently Added Salaries

Job TitleCompanyCompanyStart DateSalary
Snow Tractor Operator & Snow Plow Drivers
Snow Tractor Operator & Snow Plow Drivers
Acres Group
Acres Group
08/29/2020
08/29/2020
$66,78408/29/2020
$66,784
Tractor Operator
Tractor Operator
Skookum Contract Services
Skookum Contract Services
08/24/2020
08/24/2020
$29,99008/24/2020
$29,990
Tractor Operator-NAS Corpus Christi
Tractor Operator-NAS Corpus Christi
TRDI
TRDI
07/17/2020
07/17/2020
$29,40607/17/2020
$29,406
Tractor Operator
Tractor Operator
Melwood
Melwood
07/09/2020
07/09/2020
$37,73307/09/2020
$37,733
Tractor Operator, NA
Tractor Operator, NA
Indian Health Service
Indian Health Service
06/28/2020
06/28/2020
$25,04406/28/2020
$25,044
See More Recent Salaries

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Tractor Operator Demographics

Gender

male

83.2%

unknown

9.2%

female

7.6%

Ethnicity

White

56.4%

Hispanic or Latino

21.9%

Black or African American

15.5%

Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

88.9%

Thai

3.7%

Samoan

3.7%
See More Demographics

Tractor Operator Education

Degrees

High School Diploma

53.8%

Bachelors

13.4%

Associate

11.5%

Entry Level Jobs For Becoming A Tractor Operator

Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Top Skills For a Tractor 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, 16.0% of tractor operators listed heavy equipment on their resume, but soft skills such as mechanical skills and visual ability are important as well.

  • Heavy Equipment, 16.0%
  • Farm Tractor, 15.5%
  • Safety Procedures, 8.6%
  • Snow Removal, 5.4%
  • Operator Maintenance, 5.4%
  • Other Skills, 49.1%
  • See All Tractor Operator Skills

Best States For a Tractor Operator

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a tractor operator. The best states for people in this position are Minnesota, Washington, New York, and Alaska. Tractor operators make the most in Minnesota with an average salary of $37,494. Whereas in Washington and New York, they would average $37,329 and $36,894, respectively. While tractor operators would only make an average of $36,680 in Alaska, 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. Rhode Island

Total Tractor Operator Jobs:
39
Highest 10% Earn:
$52,000
Location Quotient:
1.44
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. Iowa

Total Tractor Operator Jobs:
181
Highest 10% Earn:
$47,000
Location Quotient:
1.86
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. Wisconsin

Total Tractor Operator Jobs:
211
Highest 10% Earn:
$48,000
Location Quotient:
1.44
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 Tractor Operator Employers

1. Morningstar
4.6
Avg. Salary: 
$66,718
Tractor Operators Hired: 
6+
2. Forklifts
3.9
Avg. Salary: 
$36,030
Tractor Operators Hired: 
5+
3. Parsons
4.7
Avg. Salary: 
$73,894
Tractor Operators Hired: 
5+
4. National Park Service
4.7
Avg. Salary: 
$40,737
Tractor Operators Hired: 
5+
5. Knight Transportation
4.0
Avg. Salary: 
$59,095
Tractor Operators Hired: 
4+
6. M. A. Patout & Son
3.3
Avg. Salary: 
$40,214
Tractor Operators Hired: 
4+

Recently Added Tractor Operator Jobs

Updated October 2, 2020