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FACTORY JOBS,

■

■

EMPLOYMENT OUTLOOK FOR WORKERS IN
JOBS REQUIRING LITTLE OR NO
EXPERIENCE OR SPECIALIZED TRAINING

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF LABOR
BUREAU O F LABOR STATISTICS


IN COOPERATION WITH
http://fraser.stlouisfed.org/
VETERANS ADMINISTRATION
Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

BULLETIN NO. 1288




FACTORY JOBS
Employment Outlook for Workers in Jobs Requiring
Little or No Experience or Specialized Training

Bulletin No. 1288
January 1961

UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF LABOR
Arthur J. Goldberg, Secretary
BUREAU OF LABOR STATISTICS
Ewan Clague, Commissioner

For sale by the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing O ffice, Washington 25, D.C.




Price 25 cents




PREFACE
T h is b u lle tin w a s p r e p a r e d in c o o p e r a t io n w ith the V e te r a n s
A d m in is t r a t io n f o r u se in it s V o c a tio n a l R e h a b ilita tio n and E d u ­
c a tio n p r o g r a m , and a ls o in the v o c a t io n a l g u id a n ce o f you n g p e o p le
in s c h o o l and o th e r s in t e r e s t e d in s e le c t in g a f ie l d o f e m p lo y m e n t.
A b o u t l m i ll io n you n g p e r s o n s w h o h av e n ot c o m p le t e d high
\
s c h o o l and a m u c h l a r g e r n u m b e r w h o s e e d u c a tio n and f o r m a l
tr a in in g en d ed w ith h ig h s c h o o l g r a d u a tio n a r e e x p e c t e d to e n te r
the la b o r f o r c e in the I9 6 0 1 s. T o a id th e s e you n g p e o p l e - - m a n y
o f w h om a r e v e t e r a n s - - t o a c h ie v e a s a t i s fa c t o r y v o c a t io n a l a d ju s t ­
m e n t, in fo r m a t io n is n e e d e d on f i e l d s o f w o r k w h ich ca n u s u a lly
be e n te r e d w ith little o r no e x p e r ie n c e o r s p e c ia li z e d tr a in in g and
on the e m p lo y m e n t o p p o r tu n itie s su ch f ie l d s w ill o f f e r . T h is p a m ­
p h le t p r o v id e s in fo r m a t io n on s o m e o p e r a tiv e ( s e m i s k i l le d ) jo b s
in m a n u fa ctu rin g in d u s t r ie s . T h is a r e a o f w o r k r e p r e s e n t s one of
the l a r g e s t f ie l d s o f e m p lo y m e n t.
T he study w a s c o n d u c te d in the D iv is io n o f M a n p o w e r and
E m p lo y m e n t S t a t is t ic s , B u re a u o f L a b o r S t a t is t ic s , U. S. D e p a r t ­
m e n t o f L a b o r , u n der the s u p e r v is io n o f H o w a rd R o s e n .
The
b u lle tin w a s p r e p a r e d b y Ian R . S u th erla n d . The B u r e a u w is h e s
to a ck n o w le d g e the g e n e r a l a s s is t a n c e and c o o p e r a t io n r e c e iv e d in
the p r e p a r a t io n o f th is r e p o r t f r o m o th e r G o v e r n m e n t a g e n c ie s ,
e m p lo y e r s , tr a d e a s s o c i a t io n s , la b o r u n io n s , and in d iv id u a ls in ­
t e r e s t e d in the c o u n s e lin g , t r a i n i n g , and e m p lo y m e n t o f you n g
w o r k e r s.







CONTENTS

Page

In tr o d u c tio n and s u m m a r y . .............. . „ . 0 . . . „ , 0 . . - . . . . « „ . . . a 0
N atu re o f w o r k ................................ . . . . . . ...................................... ..
W h e re e m p l o y e d ....................................................................
T r a in in g , o th e r q u a lific a t io n s , and a d v a n c e m e n t ....................
E m p lo y m e n t o u tlo o k . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . a . .......... .. .
E a r n in g s and w o r k in g c o n d i t i o n s .........................................................
W h e re to g o f o r m o r e i n f o r m a t i o n ..............

1
3
3
5
5
6
7

S e le c te d o c c u p a tio n s
A s s e m b l e r s .......................................................................................................
I n s p e c t o r s .........................................
M a ch in e t o o l o p e r a t o r s ...............................................................................
M a ch in e w e ld in g o p e r a t o r s and o x y g e n and a r c c u t t e r s . . .
P o w e r tr u c k o p e r a t o r s ..............................................................................
P r o d u c t io n p a i n t e r s .................
S ew ing m a c h in e o p e r a t o r s .......................................................................
S ta tio n a ry f ir e m e n ( b o i l e r ) .....................................................................

8
10
13
15
18
20
21
24

Table
E m p lo y m e n t o f o p e r a t iv e s in m a n u fa ctu rin g in d u s t r ie s ,
J u ly 1959 ..............

1

Charts
1.

2.




O p e r a tiv e s m a d e up the l a r g e s t o c c u p a tio n a l g r o u p
in m a n u fa c tu r in g , 1959 .......................................................................

2

J o b o p p o r t u n i t i e s w i l l i n c r e a s e f a s t e s t in
o c c u p a t i o n s r e q u i r i n g the m o s t e d u c a t i o n a n d t r a i n i n g . .

7




FACTORY JOBS:
Employment Outlook for Workers in Jobs Requiring
Little or No Experience or Specialized Training
INTRODUCTION AND SUMMARY
A b o u t 19 m i ll io n you n g p e o p le w ith
a h ig h s c h o o l e d u c a tio n o r l e s s a re
e x p e c t e d to e n te r the w o r ld o f w o r k
d u rin g the I9 6 0 1 s.
T h e s e you n g p e o p le
w ill f a c e a m a jo r p r o b le m in fin d in g jo b s
th e y ca n e n te r w ith ou t fu r th e r e d u c a ­
tio n o r s p e c ia li z e d tr a in in g . T h is p a m ­
p h let p r o v id e s in fo r m a t io n abou t o p e r a ­
tiv e jo b s in m a n u fa ctu rin g in d u s t r ie s , a
b r o a d a r e a o f w o r k w h ich m ig h t b e c o n ­
s id e r e d a m a jo r s o u r c e o f e m p lo y m e n t
fo r s u c h w o rk e rs.
( " O p e r a t iv e " is a
B u r e a u o f the C e n s u s o c c u p a tio n a l t it le .
T h e s e w o r k e r s a r e a ls o r e f e r r e d to a s
s e m is k ille d w o r k e r s . )

O f the 6 5 j m i ll io n w o r k e r s e m p lo y e d
in 1959, abou t 16 m i ll io n e a r n e d th e ir
liv in g in f a c t o r i e s .
The w o r k e r s c o n ­
c e r n e d w ith f a c t o r y p r o d u c tio n had v e r y
d iffe r e n t l e v e l s o f e d u c a tio n and s k ill.
T h e ir e d u c a t io n a l b a c k g ro u n d ra n g e d
f r o m c o l l e g e e d u c a tio n f o r p r o f e s s i o n a l
w o r k e r s to l e s s than g r a m m a r s c h o o l
e d u c a tio n f o r
s o m e o f the u n s k ille d
w orkers.
The tim e r e q u ir e d to le a r n
jo b s fou n d in m a n u fa ctu rin g in d u s t r ie s
v a r ie d f r o m m a n y y e a r s o f p r o f e s s i o n a l
tr a in in g f o r e m p lo y e e s s u ch a s a c c o u n t ­
ants and e n g in e e r s to a fe w h o u r s o f
o n - t h e - jo b tr a in in g f o r s o m e o f the l e s s

E m p lo y m e n t of o p e r a tiv e s in m a n u fa ctu rin g in d u s tr ie s ,

July 1959

T o ta l o p e r a tiv e s
T ota l
em p lo y m e n t
(th ou sa n d s)

N um ber
(th ou sa n d s)

P ercen t
o f tota l
em p lo y m e n t
in the
in d u stry

............................

1 6 ,4 1 0

7, 063

43. 0

A p p a re l and oth er fin ish e d te x tile p r o d u c t s ...............
T ra n s p o rta tio n e q u ip m e n t ......................................................
F o o d and k in d red p r o d u c t s ............ .. „ . . .............................
T e x t ile -m ill p r o d u c t s ............................ „ . ..............................
M a ch in e ry (e x ce p t e l e c t r i c a l ) ............................................
F a b r ic a te d m eta l p r o d u c t s ................... ................................
E le c t r i c a l m a ch in e r y ................................................................
P r im a r y m e ta l in d u s t r ie s ................... „ ................................
C h e m ic a ls and a llie d p r o d u c ts
..........................
Stone, c la y , and g la s s p ro d u cts .......................... ..
L u m b er and w ood p r o d u c ts ................... ................................
F u rn itu re and f i x t u r e s ........................................................ .. .
P rin tin g , p u blish in g, and a llie d in d u s tr ie s . . . . . . . .
In stru m en ts and re la te d p ro d u cts ......................................
A ll oth er m an u fa ctu rin g in d u s tr ie s .................................

1, 179
1, 693
1, 516
965
1, 634
1 ,0 8 4
1, 242
1, 266
848
566
694
382
865
339
2, 137

904
732
682
672
551
499
492
383
243
214
182
171
155
111
1, 072

76.
43.
45.
69.
33.
46.
39.
30.
28.
37.
26.
44.
17.
32.
50.

Industry

T ota l m an u factu rin g in d u s trie s

S ou rce:

U. S. D ep a rtm en t o f L a b o r ,




7
2
0
6
7
0
6
3
7
8
2
8
9
7
2

B ureau o f Labor S ta tistic s.

1

s k ille d a s s e m b l e r s .
F o r the fa ctory jo b s d is c u s s e d in th is b u lle tin , o n -t h e jo b tr a in in g tim e g e n e r a lly r a n g e s f r o m
a fe w h o u r s to a fe w m o n th s and in
s o m e c a s e s to a y e a r o r lo n g e r .
W o r k e r s in m a n y d iffe r e n t o c c u p a ­
tio n s h e lp to p r o d u c e the m i ll io n s of
a u t o m o b ile s , t e l e v i s i o n s e t s , m a c h in e s ,
d r e s s e s , b o o k s , and n u m e r o u s o th er
p r o d u c t s m a d e in o u r f a c t o r i e s .
(See
ch a rt 1 .)
The l a r g e s t o c c u p a tio n a l
g r o u p fou n d in f a c t o r i e s in 1959 w e r e
the 7 m i ll io n o p e r a t iv e s w h o a re the
s u b je c t o f th is stu dy. (A bou t 5 m i ll io n
w o r k e r s e m p lo y e d in s e m is k ille d jo b s
in n o n m a n u fa ctu rin g in d u s t r ie s a r e not
c o v e r e d in th is stu dy. )
F o r the m o s t p a r t, o p e r a t iv e s a re
e m p lo y e d in jo b s d i r e c t l y c o n c e r n e d w ith
the m a k in g o f p r o d u c t s , and th ey g e n ­

e r a l l y o p e r a te s o m e typ e o f m a ch in e o r
e q u ip m e n t.
A lth o u g h a ll m a n u fa c tu r in g in d u s tr ie s
e m p lo y o p e r a tiv e s, s o m e h ir e m a n y m o r e
o f th e s e w o r k e r s than do o t h e r s . (See
ta b le . )
L a r g e n u m b e r s o f o p e r a t iv e s
a re g e n e r a lly e m p lo y e d in th o s e in d u s ­
t r i e s in w h ich the m a n u fa ctu rin g p r o c ­
e s s e s ca n be d iv id e d in to r e la t iv e ly
s i m p l e o p e r a t io n s .
F o r e x a m p le , in
J u ly 1959, the a p p a r e l in d u s tr y e m p lo y e d
abou t 9 0 0 , 000 o p e r a tiv e s - -m a n y o f w h om
w ere
se w in g m a c h in e o p e r a t o r s ; the
t r a n s p o r t a t io n e q u ip m e n t in d u s tr y , m a d e
up c h ie fly o f w o r k e r s e n g a g e d in a u t o m o ­
b ile and a ir c r a f t m a n u fa c tu r in g , e m ­
p lo y e d m o r e than 7 30 , 000. On the o th e r
h an d, the p rin tin g in d u s tr y , w h i c h is
a v e r y la r g e e m p lo y e r o f s k ille d w o r k e r s
( c r a f t s m e n ) , e m p l o y e d o n ly 1 5 5 ,0 0 0
o p e r a t iv e s.

C h art 1.

O P E R A T IV E S M A D E UP THE L A R G E S T O C C U P A T I O N A L G R O U P IN M A N U F A C T U R I N G , 1959 1
EMPLOYMENT ( In Millions )
O C C U P A T IO N A L G R O U P

0

B U R E A U OF L A B O R S T A T I S T I C S

2




1

2

3

4

5

6

7

M a n y o p e r a tiv e jo b s in f a c t o r i e s r e ­
q u ir e a h ig h d e g r e e o f hand s k ills and
a re n ot p h y s ic a lly d iffic u lt ; as a r e s u lt ,
m a n y w o m e n a r e e m p lo y e d in th e s e jo b s .
N e a r ly tw o out o f e v e r y f iv e f a c t o r y
o p e r a t iv e s in 1959 w e r e w o m e n . In d eed ,
o p e r a t iv e jo b s a r e b y fa r the l a r g e s t
s o u r c e o f e m p lo y m e n t f o r w o m e n in
m a n u fa c tu r in g .
T he n u m b er o f w o m e n o p e r a t iv e s
e m p lo y e d in the d iffe r e n t m a n u fa ctu rin g
in d u s t r ie s v a r i e s c o n s id e r a b ly .
For
e x a m p le , in 1959, 7 5 0 ,0 0 0 w o m e n a c ­
c o u n te d f o r abou t 8 out o f 10 o p e r a t iv e s
in the a p p a r e l in d u s tr y .
O th er m a n u ­
fa c tu r in g in d u s t r ie s w ith la r g e n u m b e r s
o f w o m e n o p e r a t iv e s w e r e t e x t ile s and
fo o d . On the o th e r hand, p la n ts w h ich
p r o d u c e i r o n and s t e e l and p e tr o le u m
p r o d u c t s e m p lo y e d r e l a t i v e l y fe w
w om en.
The s e c t io n w h ich fo llo w s p r e s e n ts
the n atu re o f the w o r k done b y f a c t o r y
o p e r a t iv e s ( s e m is k ille d w o r k e r s ) , w h e r e
th ey a r e e m p lo y e d , th e ir tr a in in g r e q u i r e m e n t s and a d v a n ce m e n t o p p o r ­
tu n it ie s , the e m p lo y m e n t o u tlo o k f o r
th e s e w o r k e r s , and th e ir e a r n in g s and
w o r k in g c o n d it io n s . L a te r s e c t io n s p r o ­
v id e m o r e d e ta ile d in fo r m a t io n abou t the
fo llo w in g s p e c i f i c o p e r a t iv e jo b s : A s s e m ­
b l e r s , i n s p e c t o r s , m a ch in e t o o l o p e r a ­
t o r s , m a c h in e w e l d i n g o p e r a t o r s and
o x y g e n and a r c c u t t e r s , p o w e r tr u c k
o p e r a t o r s , p r o d u c tio n p a in t e r s , sew in g
m a c h in e o p e r a t o r s , and s ta tio n a r y f i r e ­
m en (b o ile r ).

u s e sew in g m a c h in e s w h ich jo i n t o g e t h e r
f a b r i c s to p r o d u c e c lo th in g , a w n in g s,
and o th e r it e m s .
O th e r s o p e r a te m a ­
c h in e s to sta m p out m e t a l p a r ts ; s t ill
o t h e r s u se m a c h in e t o o l s , su ch a s e n ­
gin e la th e s and m illin g m a c h in e s , to
shape m e ta l to p r e c i s e s iz e s .
A con ­
s id e r a b le n u m b e r o f th e s e w o r k e r s o p ­
e r a te m a t e r i a l m o v in g e q u ip m e n t) su ch
a s p o w e r t r u c k s to m o v e h e a v y and
la r g e a m o u n t s o f r a w m a t e r ia ls and
m a n u fa c tu r e d p r o d u c ts and p a r ts .
L a r g e n u m b e r s o f o p e r a t iv e s a re
e m p lo y e d a s a s s e m b le r s and in s p e c t o r s.
A s s e m b l e r s f it p a r ts to g e t h e r to m a k e
un its s u ch a s a s e c t io n o r s u b s e c t io n
o f a r a d io o r t e l e v i s i o n s e t. I n s p e c t o r s
e x a m in e and t e s t p r o d u c ts to fin d out
w h e th e r th e ir q u a l i t y is s a t is fa c t o r y .
M an y o p e r a t iv e s in f a c t o r i e s a re e m ­
p lo y e d a s h e lp e r s o r a s s is ta n ts to m o r e
s k ille d w o r k e r s .
F o r e x a m p le , s ta ­
tio n a r y f ir e m e n a s s i s t s k ille d s ta tio n ­
a r y e n g i n e e r s in the o p e r a tio n a n d
m a in te n a n c e of s te a m b o i l e r s .
O p e r a t iv e s u se a lim it e d v a r ie t y of
h a n d to o ls and e q u ip m e n t. A m o n g th e s e
a re s c r e w d r iv e r s , p lie r s , file s , s o ld e r ­
ing ir o n s , m e a s u r i n g d e v i c e s , a n d
cu ttin g t o o l s .
M a n y o f th e s e w o r k e r s
a ls o m a k e s im p le a d ju s tm e n ts and d o
m in o r m a in te n a n c e w o r k on the m a c h in e s
th e y u s e .
S o m e a re r e q u ir e d to k e e p
s im p le r e c o r d s o f th e ir w o r k .

Where Employed

A l t h o u g h the w o r k p e r f o r m e d by
o p e r a t iv e s in f a c t o r i e s i s q u ite v a r ie d ,
th e ir jo b s h av e s o m e th in g s in c o m m o n .
In g e n e r a l, w o r k e r s in o p e r a t iv e jo b s
w o r k w ith th e ir h a n d s.
M a n y o f the
jo b s r e q u ir e the s a m e m o t io n s d u rin g
the w o r k in g d a y; m o s t r e q u ir e o n ly a
s h o r t p e r io d o f o n - t h e - jo b t r a i n i n g .
F o r the m o s t p a r t, o p e r a t i v e s a re
c l o s e l y s u p e r v is e d and to ld e x a c t ly w hat
to d o and h ow to d o it.
A s a r u le ,
th ey a r e r e q u ir e d to r e a c h a c e r t a in
s p e e d and q u a lity o f p r o d u c tio n .

F a c t o r y o p e r a t iv e s g e n e r a lly a r e e m ­
p lo y e d in la r g e n u m b e r s in m a s s p r o d u c ­
tio n in d u s t r ie s w h e r e the jo b s ca n be
d iv id e d in to r e la t iv e ly s im p le o p e r a t io n s .
O f the a p p r o x im a te ly 7 m i ll io n w o r k e r s
e m p lo y e d in f a c t o r y o p e r a tiv e jo b s in
J u ly 1959, abou t h a lf w o r k e d in p la n ts
w h ich m a n u fa c tu r e m e n ' s and w o m e n ’ s
c lo th in g and o th e r a p p a r e l; a u t o m o b ile s ,
a u to m o b ile p a r t s , t r u c k s , and a ir c r a f t ;
fo o d ; t e x t il e s ? s u ch as c o t to n and w o o l;
and m a c h in e r y .
The r e m a in d e r w e r e
e m p lo y e d in in d u s t r ie s w h ich m a n u fa c ­
tu re it e m s su ch a s e l e c t r i c a l m a c h in e r y ,
w o o d p r o d u c ts and fu r n itu r e , and f a b r i ­
c a te d m e ta l p r o d u c t s .

M illio n s o f th e s e f a c t o r y w o r k e r s
o p e r a te p o w e r - d r i v e n m a c h in e s . M any

F a c t o r y o p e r a t iv e s a r e e m p lo y e d in
e v e r y S tate, c it y , and in d u s tr ia l c e n te r

Nature of Work




3

4




in th e N a tion .
S ix S ta tes h ave p a r t i c ­
u la r ly la r g e n u m b e r s o f th e s e w o r k e r s :
N ew Y o r k , P e n n s y lv a n ia , I l li n o is , O h io,
M ic h ig a n , and C a lif o r n ia .

Training, Other Qualifications,
and Advancement
M o s t f a c t o r y o p e r a t iv e s le a r n th e ir
jo b s i n f o r m a lly b y ''p ic k in g up" th e ir
s k ills on the jo b .
In m a n y p la n ts , a
n ew o r u n s k ille d w o r k e r
s ta r ts h is
tr a in in g b y o b s e r v in g the w o r k d on e by
an e x p e r ie n c e d e m p lo y e e .
L a t e r , he
d o e s the m o r e s im p le and r o u tin e w o r k
u n d er the c l o s e s u p e r v is io n o f an e x ­
p e r ie n c e d w o r k e r . F o r the m o s t p a r t,
it ta k e s a tr a in e e f r o m a fe w d a y s to
a fe w m o n th s to le a r n to d o the jo b .
In s o m e j o b s , h o w e v e r , the tr a in in g
p e r io d m a y be a s little a s a fe w h o u r s ,
o r as lo n g a s a y e a r o r m o r e .
A lm o s t a ll e m p lo y e r s o f o p e r a t iv e s
r e q u ir e o n ly that the n ew e m p lo y e e be
p h y s i c a l l y a b le to p e r f o r m the jo b ,
l e a r n it s r e q u ir e m e n t s , and be d e p e n d ­
a b le . T h e s e e m p lo y e r s p r e f e r w o r k e r s
w h o a r e a b le to d o r o u tin e , p r o d u c t io n ­
lin e w o r k at a s te a d y and f a s t p a c e .
S o m e a ls o p r e f e r that a p p lic a n ts be
f a m i li a r w ith d iffe r e n t ty p e s o f f a c t o r y
w o r k , su ch a s m a c h in e sh op w o r k , w o o d ­
w o r k in g , r iv e t in g , and w e ld in g .
A fe w
e m p l o y e r s - - u s u a l l y la r g e c o m p a n i e s - u se t e s t s to d e te r m in e w h e th e r a p p li­
ca n ts h av e a p titu d e s f o r h a n d w ork and
g o o d e y e -h a n d c o o r d in a t io n . A g r o w in g
n u m b e r o f e m p lo y e r s p r e f e r to e m p lo y
you n g p e o p le w ith a h ig h s c h o o l o r tr a d e
s c h o o l e d u c a t i o n and o fte n lo o k f o r
w o r k e r s w h o h av e had c o u r s e s in m a th ­
e m a t ic s and b lu e p r in t r e a d in g .
F o r m o s t you n g p e o p le , th e r e a re
lim it e d a d v a n ce m e n t o p p o r tu n itie s in
o p e r a tiv e j o b s , a lth ou gh s o m e w o r k e r s
h av e b e e n a b le to a d v a n ce to the h ig h e r
l e v e l s o f p ay in o p e r a tiv e j o b s .
S om e
o p e r a t iv e s p ic k up a v a r ie t y o f w o r k e x ­
p e r ie n c e b y m o v in g f r o m jo b to jo b in
one sh op o r b y m o v in g f r o m one e m ­
p lo y e r to a n o t h e r .
In a c q u ir in g th is
e x p e r i e n c e , th e s e w o r k e r s c a n le a r n t h e
v a r io u s o p e r a t i o n s of a t r a d e and
e v e n tu a lly g e t jo b s a s s k ille d c r a f t s ­
m e n . O p e r a t iv e s m a y s ta r t a s h e lp e r s




to c r a f t s m e n and le a r n the tr a d e b y o b ­
s e r v in g and a s s is t in g the s k ille d w o r k e r .
S o m e o f th e s e h e lp e r s m a y e v e n tu a lly
b e c o m e c r a f t s m e n . C r a ft s m e n w h o h ave
le a r n e d th e ir s k ills in an in f o r m a l w a y
s o m e t im e s h av e ta k en c o u r s e s r e la t e d
to th e ir tr a d e in v o c a t io n a l s c h o o l s .
In a fe w in d u s t r ie s , s u ch a s a u t o m o ­
b ile m a n u fa c tu r in g , s o m e o p e r a t iv e s a re
g iv e n an o p p o r tu n ity to e n te r a p p r e n ­
t ic e s h ip tr a in in g p r o g r a m s to b e c o m e
s k ille d w o r k e r s .
A p p r e n t ic e s h ip c o n ­
s is t s o f a p r o g r a m o f f o r m a l o n -t h e jo b tr a in in g (w h ich la s t s abou t 3 o r 4
y e a r s ) and r e la t e d c l a s s r o o m i n s t r u c ­
tio n , d u rin g w h ich the a p p r e n tic e le a r n s
the t r a d e . In o th e r in d u s t r ie s , su ch a s
in d u s tr ia l c h e m i c a l s and p e t r o le u m r e ­
fin in g , n ew w o r k e r s a r e h ir e d as l a ­
b o r e r s . T h e s e w o r k e r s , a fte r a c q u ir in g
s u ffic ie n t e x p e r ie n c e and tr a in in g , m a y
m o v e up to jo b s a s o p e r a t iv e s . In r a r e
in s t a n c e s , f a c t o r y o p e r a t iv e s a re a b le
to a d v a n ce g r a d u a lly to t e c h n ic a l and
a d m in is tr a tiv e j o b s .

Employment Outlook
T h e r e w ill be h u n d re d s o f th o u sa n d s
o f o p e n in g s in f a c t o r y o p e r a t iv e jo b s in
the I9 6 0 1 s. D u rin g th is p e r io d , a g r o w ­
ing d e m a n d f o r the p r o d u c ts o f ou r
m a n u fa ctu rin g in d u s tr ie s is e x p e c t e d b e ­
c a u s e o f r is in g p o p u la tio n , in c r e a s in g
in c o m e s , and g r o w in g n a tio n a l d e fe n s e
n e e d s . T h u s, a g r o w th in m a n u fa ctu rin g
e m p lo y m e n t i s e x p e c t e d in the I9 6 0 ' s
and the n u m b e r o f o p e r a tiv e jo b s w ill
a ls o e x p a n d .
M an y th o u s a n d s o f o p e r a t iv e j o b o p ­
p o r tu n it ie s w ill r e s u lt f r o m the n e e d to
r e p la c e o p e r a t iv e s w h o le a v e th e ir j o b s ,
r e t i r e , o r d ie . T h is o c c u p a tio n a l g r o u p
h a s a f a i r l y h ig h p r o p o r t io n o f you n g
w o r k e r s and w o m e n w o r k e r s , m a n y o f
w h o m w i ll l e a v e th e ir j o b s .
Young
w o r k e r s , a s a g r o u p , te n d to ch a n ge
jo b s m o r e o fte n than d o o ld e r w o r k e r s .
M a n y w o m e n o p e r a t iv e s le a v e th e ir jo b s
to g e t m a r r ie d , r a is e f a m i l i e s , o r m o v e
to o th e r a r e a s w h en th e ir h u sb a n d s
ch a n ge j o b s .
E m p lo y m e n t o f o p e r a t iv e s in m a n u ­
fa c tu r in g in d u s t r ie s w i ll e xp an d in the

5

I9 6 0 ' s, but the ra te o f i n c r e a s e w ill
p r o b a b ly n ot be a s fa s t a s that f o r to ta l
m a n u fa c tu r in g e m p lo y m e n t, l a r g e ly b e ­
c a u s e o f r e c e n t im p r o v e m e n t s in m a n u ­
fa c t u r in g p r o c e s s e s .
T h ese a dva n ces,
p o p u la r ly kn ow n a s " a u t o m a t io n ," p e r ­
m it g r e a t g a in s in p r o d u c tio n w ith ou t
c o m p a r a b le g a in s in e m p l o y m e n t - - p a r ­
t i c u l a r ly in o p e r a tiv e j o b s .
A lth ou g h
t e c h n o lo g ic a l d e v e lo p m e n ts w ill s lo w
d ow n the ra te o f g r o w th o f o p e r a tiv e
e m p lo y m e n t, m a n y p l a n t s w h ich a r e
to d a y r e l a t iv e ly u n m e c h a n iz e d w ill r e ­
q u ire a d d itio n a l o p e r a t iv e s .
F in a lly ,
ch a n g in g t e c h n o lo g y p r o b a b ly w ill c r e a t e
m a n y n ew ty p e s o f o p e r a tiv e jo b s .
T h e e m p lo y m e n t o f o p e r a t iv e s w ill
ex p a n d m o r e r a p id ly in s o m e m a n u fa c ­
tu rin g in d u s t r ie s than in o t h e r s d u rin g
the I960* s.
F o r e x a m p l e , the e m ­
p lo y m e n t o f o p e r a t iv e s w i ll i n c r e a s e
g r e a t ly b y 1970 in the e l e c t r i c a l m a c h in ­
e r y i n d u s t r y (p ro d u ce rs of e le c t r ic
m o t o r s and e l e c t r o n i c e q u ip m e n t su ch
a s r a d io and t e le v is io n s e t s ) , in the
m a c h in e r y in d u s tr y ( p r o d u c e r s o f e n ­
g in e s and m e ta lw o r k in g and in d u s tr ia l
m a c h in e r y s u ch a s la th e s and m illin g
m a c h i n e s ) , and in the a p p a r e l in d u s ­
t r y ( p r o d u c e r s o f g a r m e n ts su ch as
d r e s s e s , s u its , a n d c o a t s ) .
A lth ou g h
to ta l e m p l o y m e n t o f o p e r a t iv e s m a y
d e c r e a s e in s o m e in d u s t r ie s w h ic h a re
la r g e e m p lo y e r s o f th e s e w o r k e r s , su ch
a s the te x t ile i n d u s t r y , the n e e d to
r e p la c e w o r k e r s w h o le a v e th e ir jo b s ,
r e t i r e , o r d ie w ill c r e a t e m a n y th ou ­
san d s o f o p e r a t iv e jo b o p p o r tu n itie s f o r
n ew w o r k e r s in th e s e in d u s t r ie s .
E m p lo y m e n t is a ls o e x p e c t e d to in ­
c r e a s e f a s t e r in s o m e o p e r a tiv e jo b s
than in o t h e r s . F o r e x a m p le , the e m ­
p lo y m e n t o f s e m is k ille d m a c h in e w e ld ­
ing o p e r a t o r s , o x y g e n and a r c c u t t e r s ,
and p o w e r tr u c k o p e r a t o r s is e x p e c t e d
to ex p a n d at a f a s t e r ra te than m o s t
o th e r o p e r a t iv e j o b s .
E m p lo y m e n t of
s ta tio n a r y f i r e m e n and p r o d u c tio n p a in t­
e r s , on the o th e r hand, is e x p e c t e d to
i n c r e a s e o n ly s lig h tly .
D u rin g p e r io d s o f d e c lin e in m a n u ­
fa c t u r in g a c t iv it y , o p e r a t iv e s a r e m o r e
lik e ly to l o s e th e ir jo b s than c r a f t s ­
m e n o r w h i t e - c o l l a r e m p lo y e e s .
T h is
is tru e b e c a u s e e m p lo y e r s a re s lo w e r

6




to la y o f f th e ir m o r e s k ille d e m p lo y e e s
w h o , c o m p a r e d w ith o p e r a t iv e s , ca n n ot
be a s r e a d ily r e h ir e d w h en b u s in e s s
im p r o v e s .
O p e r a tiv e s a ls o ten d to be
u n e m p lo y e d , B u re a u o f L a b o r S ta tis ­
t i c s s tu d ie s sh ow , f o r lo n g e r p e r io d s
o f tim e than d o m o s t o th e r w o r k e r s ,
and th ey a re g e n e r a lly r e h i r e d la t e r
than w o r k e r s in m a n y o t h e r t y p e s o f jo b s .
On the o th e r h an d, o p e r a t iv e s m o r e
r e a d ily sh ift to d iffe r e n t jo b s at the
s a m e l e v e l than d o m a n y w o r k e r s at
h ig h e r s k ill l e v e l s .
S hould th ey l o s e
th e ir jo b s in an in d u s tr y o r in a p a r ­
t ic u la r f i e l d o f w o r k , o p e r a t iv e s c a n
e a s i ly w r it e o ff th e ir s m a lle r in v e s t ­
m e n t in tr a in in g and e x p e r ie n c e in th e ir
p a s t jo b s and, a fte r a b r i e f p e r io d of
a d d itio n a l tr a in in g , le a r n a new o p e r a ­
tiv e jo b .
The m o s t r a p id ra te o f g r o w th in
the N a tio n 1 s e m p lo y m e n t w ill take p la ce
in o c c u p a tio n s r e q u ir in g the m o s t e d u ­
c a tio n and t r a i n i n g .
(See c h a r t 2 . )
T h e r e f o r e , i f p o s s i b l e , y ou n g p e o p le
w h o h ave the a b ility sh o u ld p r e p a r e
t h e m s e lv e s f o r jo b s a s s k ille d w o r k e r s
o r as p r o f e s s i o n a l , t e c h n ic a l, o r o th e r
w h it e -c o lla r w o r k e r s .
P r e p a r in g f o r
m a n y o f th e s e jo b s w i ll , o f c o u r s e , r e ­
q u ire a d d itio n a l tr a in in g and e d u c a tio n .
H o w e v e r , f o r you n g m e n and w o m e n w h o
h ave no tr a in in g b e y o n d h ig h s c h o o l,
f a c t o r y o p e r a tiv e e m p lo y m e n t w ill be a
m a jo r a r e a o f jo b o p p o r tu n itie s . M o r e ­
o v e r , it sh o u ld be n o te d that you n g w o r k ­
e r s w h o take f a c t o r y o p e r a t iv e jo b s a re
not n e ce s s a r i l y cu t o ff p e r m a n e n tly f r o m
a d v a n c e m e n t i f th ey a re a ble to take
a dva n ta ge o f the m a n y e d u c a t io n a l o p ­
p o r tu n it ie s a v a ila b le in th e ir c o m m u ­
n it ie s . T h e y m a y e n te r an a p p r e n t ic e ­
sh ip p r o g r a m o r take c o u r s e s in ev e n in g
s c h o o ls w h ich w ill e v e n tu a lly p r e p a r e
th e m f o r b e tte r j o b s .

Earnings and Working Conditions
E a r n in g s o f f a c t o r y o p e r a t iv e s v a r y
w id e ly , d e p e n d in g on the jo b s th e y h a v e ,
the s iz e and lo c a t io n o f the plan t in
w h ich th ey a r e e m p lo y e d , the m e th o d o f
w a g e p a y m e n t (h o u r ly o r p ie c e r a t e s ) ,
and in d iv id u a l a b ility .
A lth o u g h s o m e
o p e r a t iv e s w h o a r e p a id on the b a s is o f

C h art 2.

JO B OPPORTUN IT IE S W IL L IN C R E A S E FASTEST IN
O C C U P A T I O N S R E Q U IRIN G THE M O S T E D U C A T I O N A N D T R A IN IN G
PERCENT CH AN GE IN EMPLOYMENT, 1960-1970
O C C U P A T IO N A L G R O U P

PERCEN T

-20
1

-10

10

20

30

' ' 1 ■
■
■

Professional, Technical,
and Kindred Workers

50
1

J/
.............

M anagers, Officials, and Proprietors

40

:±7

0

/

___________________

/

Clerical and Sales Workers

/
y

Craftsmen

Operatives

/

/
V

Service Workers

/

Laborers_______________________________________________________________ No change

Farmers and Farm Workers

source: U N IT E D S T A T E S D E P A R T M E N T OF L A B O R
BUREAU OF L A B O R S T A T I S T I C S

the n u m b e r o f it e m s th ey p r o d u c e a re
a m on g the h ig h e s t p aid m a n u a l w o r k e r s
in m a n u fa ctu rin g in d u s t r ie s , e a r n in g s o f
o p e r a t iv e s a s a g r o u p a re s o m e w h a t
b e lo w s k ille d c r a ft s m e n . F o r e x a m p le ,
m a le o p e r a t iv e s in d u r a b le g o o d s (a r t i­
c l e s that la s t f o r s o m e t im e ) m a n u ­
fa c tu r in g p la n ts a v e r a g e d $ 4 ,7 50 in
1958, c o m p a r e d w ith $ 5 ,2 0 0 e a r n e d by
c r a f t s m e n in a ll in d u s t r ie s (both m a n u ­
fa c tu r in g and n o n m a n u fa c tu r in g ). W o m ­
en o p e r a tiv e s g e n e r a lly e a r n e d l e s s than
m en.
The w o r k in g c o n d it io n s o f f a c t o r y
o p e r a tiv e s d if fe r a c c o r d in g to the in d u s ­
t r y in w h ich th ey a r e e m p lo y e d and the
jo b b e in g d o n e .
F o r e x a m p le , a s s e m ­
b l e r s o f s p e c ia li z e d e l e c t r o n i c e q u ip m e n t
m a y w o r k s e a te d at a ta b le in an a i r c o n d i t i o n e d , d u s t - f r e e r o o m ; on the
o th e r han d, a m a c h in e t o o l o p e r a t o r m a y
stand n ext to a h ig h -s p e e d m a c h in e t o o l
in a n o is y m a c h in e sh op w ith m e ta l




c h ip s and lu b r ic a t in g o il in the w o r k
a r e a . S om e o f th e s e w o r k e r s a r e s u b je c t
to jo b h a z a r d s b e c a u s e th e y w o r k w ith
s h a rp cu ttin g t o o ls and o th e r e q u ip ­
m e n t w h ich ca n be d a n g e r o u s i f u s e d
in c o r r e c tly .
C o n s e q u e n tly , s a fe ty in ­
s tr u c tio n s a re o fte n an im p o r ta n t p a rt
o f o p e r a tiv e jo b tr a in in g .
M a n y o p e r a t iv e s b e lo n g to la b o r
u n ion s and a r e c o v e r e d by c o l l e c t i v e
b a r g a in in g a g r e e m e n t s n e g o tia te d b e ­
tw e e n e m p lo y e r s and u n i o n s .
T h ese
c o n t r a c t s u s u a lly in c lu d e p r o v is io n s f o r
b e n e fits su ch a s p a id h o lid a y s and v a c a ­
tio n s , h o s p it a liz a t io n , m e d ic a l and s u r ­
g i c a l in s u r a n c e , lif e in s u r a n c e , s ic k n e s s
and a c c id e n t in s u r a n c e , and r e t ir e m e n t
p e n s io n s .

Where To Go for More Information
M an y l o c a l o f f i c e s o f the State e m ­
p lo y m e n t s e r v i c e , a ffilia t e d w ith the U c S„
7

E m p lo y m e n t S e r v ic e ,
abou t o p e r a t iv e jo b s
n it ie s .

have in fo r m a t io n
in l o c a l c o m m u ­

A d d itio n a l in fo r m a t io n abou t o p e r a ­
tiv e jo b s m a y be fou n d in the O c c u p a ­

tio n a l O u tlo o k H an d book , 1959 e d itio n ,
B u ll. 1255, U. S. D e p a r tm e n t o f L a b o r ,
B u re a u o f L a b o r S t a t is t ic s . T h is p u b ­
lic a t io n i s f o r s a le b y the S u p erin ten d en t
o f D o c u m e n ts , U. S. G o v e r n m e n t P r in t ­
ing O f fi c e , W a sh in g to n 25, D . C . , $ 4 . 25.

ASSEMBLERS
Nature of Work
M a n y o f the p r o d u c t s and p a r ts m a d e
in f a c t o r i e s m u s t be a s s e m b le d d u rin g
v a r io u s s te p s in the m a n u fa ctu rin g p r o c ­
e s s as w e ll a s in the fin a l a s s e m b ly o f
the p r o d u c t.
F o r e x a m p le , t e l e v i s i o n
s e t s , a u t o m o b ile s , and r e f r i g e r a t o r s a re
t y p i c a l p r o d u c ts w h ich m u s t u n d e r g o
m a n y a s s e m b ly o p e r a t io n s . The w o r k e r s
w h o put to g e t h e r p a r ts o r fin is h e d p r o ­
d u c ts a re kn ow n a s a s s e m b l e r s .
S om e a s s e m b l e r s , kn ow n as f l o o r
a s s e m b l e r s , put to g e t h e r la r g e , h ea v y
m a c h in e r y o r e q u ip m e n t on sh op f l o o r s ,
o fte n fa s te n in g p a r ts w ith b o lt s , s c r e w s ,
o r r i v e t s . O th e r s , kn ow n as b e n c h a s ­
s e m b l e r s , put to g e t h e r s m a ll p a r ts to
m a k e s u b a s s e m b lie s o r s m a ll c o m p le te
u n its , w h ile w o r k in g at a b e n c h . M an y
a s s e m b l e r s w o r k on p r o d u c t s o r p a r ts
w h ic h m o v e a u t o m a tic a lly p a s t th e ir w o r k
s ta tio n s on c o n v e y o r s . T h e s e w o r k e r s
m u s t d o th e ir a s s e m b ly jo b w ith in the
tim e p e r io d it ta k e s the p a r t o r p r o d u c t
to p a s s th e ir w o r k sta tion .
T he jo b d u tie s o f a s s e m b l e r s d ep en d
u pon the p r o d u c t b e in g m a n u fa c tu r e d
o r the m a n u fa ctu rin g p r o c e s s b e in g u s e d .
In a i r c r a f t and m i s s i l e p r o d u c tio n , th e s e
w o r k e r s m a y a s s e m b le and in s ta ll un its
o r p a r ts in to s u b a s s e m b lie s .
In the
a u to m o b ile in d u s tr y , one a s s e m b le r m a y
s ta r t nuts on b o lts and the n ex t w o r k e r
on the a s s e m b ly lin e tig h te n s the nuts
w ith p o w e r - d r i v e n t o o l s . A s s e m b l e r s in
e l e c t r o n i c p la n ts m a y c o n n e c t p a r ts w ith
e l e c t r i c a l w ir e .
S e m is k ille d a s s e m b le r s d o r e la t iv e ly
s im p le , r e p e t it iv e o p e r a t io n s u n d er c l o s e
s u p e r v is io n , o fte n g u id e d b y s im p le in -

8




Assembler

soldering

automobile

connections

heater

on

motor

s t r u c t io n s . (In c o n t r a s t , s k ille d a s s e m ­
b l e r s w o r k on the m o r e c o m p le x p a r ts
o f s u b a s s e m b lie s w ith lit t le o r no s u p e r ­
v is io n and a r e r e s p o n s ib le f o r the fin a l
a s s e m b ly o f c o m p l e x j o b s . T h e s e s k ille d
w o r k e r s m u s t k n ow h ow to r e a d b lu e p r in ts
and o th e r e n g in e e r in g s p e c if ic a t io n s and
u s e a v a r ie t y o f t o o ls and p r e c i s i o n
m e a s u r in g in s tr u m e n ts . )
The k in d s o f t o o ls s e m is k ille d a s ­
s e m b l e r s u se d e p e n d u pon the jo b th ey
a r e d o in g and the p r o d u c t on w h ich th ey
a re w o r k i n g .
P lie r s , s c r e w d r iv e r s ,
s o l d e r i n g i r o n s , p o w e r d r i l l s , and
w r e n c h e s a r e a m o n g the c o m m o n t o o ls
u sed by a s s e m b le r s .

Where Employed
M o r e than 500, 000 s e m is k ille d a s ­
s e m b l e r s w e r e e m p lo y e d in m a n u fa c ­
tu rin g p l a n t s in 1959, w ith the g r e a t
m a jo r i t y in m e ta lw o r k in g p la n ts .
A s­
s e m b l e r s w o r k in p la n ts w h ich m a n u ­
f a c t u r e , on a m a s s p r o d u c tio n b a s is ,
su ch d iv e r s e p r o d u c ts as a u t o m o b ile s ,
a ir c r a f t , e l e c t r i c a l and e l e c t r o n i c e q u ip ­
m e n t s u ch a s r a d io s and t e l e v i s i o n s e t s ,
and in s tr u m e n ts .
The n u m b e r and ty p e s o f a s s e m b ly
jo b s w ith in a plan t d e p e n d to a g r e a t
e x te n t u pon the p r o d u c t b e in g m a n u fa c ­
tu r e d and the w a y in w h ich p r o d u c tio n
is o r g a n iz e d . L a r g e n u m b e r s o f s e m i ­
s k ille d a s s e m b l e r s a r e u s u a lly e m ­
p lo y e d in p la n ts w h e r e the w o r k ca n be
d iv id e d in to m a n y ro u tin e and r e p e t it iv e
ta s k s .
S e m is k ille d a s s e m b ly jo b s a re c o n ­
c e n tr a t e d in g r e a t e s t n u m b e r w h e r e
m e ta lw o r k in g in d u s t r ie s a re lo c a t e d .
C a lif o r n ia , M ic h ig a n , N ew Y o r k , O h io,
I l li n o is , and P e n n s y lv a n ia a re a m on g
the l e a d i n g S ta tes in w h ich a s s e m b ly
jo b s a re fou n d .

Training, Other Qualifications,
and Advancement
I n e x p e r ie n c e d w o r k e r s m a y b e h ir e d
a s t r a in e e s o r h e lp e r s in m a n u fa ctu rin g
in d u s t r ie s and tr a in e d on the jo b to d o
s e m is k ille d a s s e m b lin g w o r k in a fe w
h ou rs or days.
T he new w o r k e r m a y
h av e h is jo b d u tie s e x p la in e d to h im b y
h is s u p e r v is o r and th en be p la c e d u n d er
the s u p e r v is io n o f a m o r e e x p e r ie n c e d
e m p lo y e e .
T h e tr a in e e o b s e r v e s the
e x p e r ie n c e d e m p lo y e e at w o r k o r d i ­
r e c t l y a s s i s t s h im in h is w o r k .
W hen
the le a r n e r d e v e lo p s s u ffic ie n t s p e e d ,
he is p la c e d " o n h is ow n " and is r e ­
s p o n s ib le f o r the w o r k he p r o d u c e s .
E m p lo y e r s g e n e r a lly w ant a p p lic a n ts
f o r s e m is k il le d a s s e m b l y jo b s to be
p h y s ic a lly a b le , d e p e n d a b le , and to h ave
s o m e aptitu de f o r m e c h a n ic a l w o r k .
S om e e m p lo y e r s p r e f e r p e r s o n s w ith
no p r e v io u s e x p e r ie n c e in f a c t o r y a s ­
s e m b ly w o r k s o that th ey ca n b e m o r e




e a s i ly tr a in e d in the e m p l o y e r s ’ a s s e m ­
b ly m e th o d s .
H igh s c h o o l g r a d u a te s
o r w o r k e r s w h o h av e ta k en v o c a t io n a l
s c h o o l c o u r s e s , su ch a s b l u e p r i n t
r e a d in g , a r e p r e f e r r e d b y m a n y e m ­
p lo y e r s and u s u a l l y h ave m o r e jo b
o p p o r tu n itie s and g r e a t e r a d v a n ce m e n t
possibilities.
G e n e r a lly , f o r p r o ­
d u c t io n -lin e a s s e m b ly jo b s , e m p lo y e r s
lo o k f o r a p p lic a n ts w h o ca n d o ro u tin e
w o r k at a ste a d y and f a s t p a c e .
F or
o th e r ty p e s o f a s s e m b ly j o b s , a p p li­
ca n ts m a y h av e to m e e t s p e c ia l r e ­
q u ir e m e n t s .
F o r e x a m p le , in p l a n t s
p r o d u c in g e l e c t r i c a l and e l e c t r o n i c p r o ­
d u c ts w h ich m a y c o n ta in m a n y d iffe r e n t
c o l o r e d w i r e s , a p p l i c a n t s o fte n a r e
t e s t e d f o r c o l o r b lin d n e s s .
M a n y w o m e n a r e e m p lo y e d in s e m i ­
s k ille d a s s e m b l y jo b s b e c a u s e m u ch
a s s e m b ly w o r k is r e l a t iv e ly lig h t and
o fte n r e q u ir e s the a b ility to w o r k w ith
s m a ll and d e l i c a t e o b je c t s .
T h is is
p a r t ic u la r ly tr u e in the e l e c t r i c a l and
e l e c t r o n i c e q u ip m e n t in d u s tr y .
On the
o th e r hand, m a le w o r k e r s a r e e m p lo y e d
in fin a l a u to m o b ile a s s e m b ly w h e r e the
w o r k g e n e r a lly is p h y s ic a lly h a r d .
P o s s i b i l i t i e s f o r a d v a n ce m e n t a r e
lim it e d in th is typ e o f w o r k . H o w e v e r ,
s o m e w o r k e r s w h o le a r n to p e r f o r m a
v a r ie t y o f a s s e m b ly w o r k and w h o h ave
a k n o w le d g e o f b lu e p r in t r e a d in g and
sh op m a t h e m a t ic s a r e a b le to b e c o m e
s k ille d a s s e m b l e r s .
A fe w w o r k e r s
a ls o m a y b e c o m e s k ille d i n s p e c t o r s o r
fo re m e n .

Employment Outlook
M a n y th o u sa n d s o f s e m is k il le d a s ­
s e m b ly jo b s in m a n u fa c tu r in g in d u s t r ie s
a r e e x p e c t e d to b e c o m e a v a ila b le d u rin g
the I 9 6 0 ’ s. The m e ta lw o r k in g in d u s t r ie s
( p a r t ic u la r ly th o s e w h ic h p r o d u c e e l e c ­
t r i c a l and e l e c t r o n i c e q u ip m e n t ), w h ich
e m p lo y the g r e a t m a jo r i t y o f th e s e w o r k ­
e r s , a r e e x p e c t e d to e x p e r ie n c e e m p lo y ­
m e n t i n c r e a s e s . In a d d itio n to the n ew
o p e n in g s w h ic h m a y b e c r e a t e d b y the
e x p e c t e d i n c r e a s e in the e m p lo y m e n t o f
s e m is k il le d a s s e m b l e r s ,
r e p la c e m e n t
n e e d s w ill p r o v id e a c o n s id e r a b le n u m b e r
o f jo b o p p o r tu n itie s f o r new w o r k e r s in
th is r e la t iv e ly la r g e o c c u p a tio n a l g r o u p .

9

T h e n eed to r e p la c e w o r k e r s w h o le a v e
th e ir j o b s , t r a n s fe r to o th e r ty p e s of
w o r k , r e t i r e , o r d ie sh ou ld r e s u lt in
a c o n s id e r a b le n u m b e r o f jo b o p e n in g s .
N ot a ll a s s e m b ly jo b s a r e e x p e c t e d
to i n c r e a s e at the s a m e r a te .
T ech ­
n o lo g ic a l c h a n g e s m a y s l o w up t h e
g r o w th o f s o m e j o b s .
F o r e x a m p le ,
the in t r o d u c tio n o f p r in te d e l e c t r i c a l
c i r c u it s r e d u c e s the w ir in g w o r k r e ­
q u ir e d in a s s e m b lin g r a d io and t e le v is io n
s e t s , a ffe c tin g the e m p lo y m e n t o f a s ­
s e m b ly w o r k e r s in p la n ts p r o d u c in g the se
p ro d u cts.
A n in c r e a s e in the u se o f
a u to m a tic a s s e m b ly p r o c e s s e s a ls o m a y
d e c r e a s e the e m p l o y m e n t of t h e s e
w o r k e r s.
A lth ou g h the o u tlo o k f o r s e m is k ille d
a s s e m b l e r s in m a n u fa ctu rin g in d u s tr ie s
is g e n e r a lly f a v o r a b le , e m p lo y m e n t in
m e t a l w o r k i n g m a n u fa ctu rin g p la n ts,
w h ich h ave m a n y a s s e m b l e r s , is p a r t i c ­
u la r ly s e n s it iv e to ch a n g e s in b u s in e s s
a c t iv it ie s and n a tion a l d e fe n s e n e e d s .
T h e r e f o r e , th e s e w o r k e r s a re s u b je c t
o c c a s i o n a l ly to l a y o f f s .

Earnings and Working Conditions
E a r n in g s o f s e m is k ille d a s s e m b le r s
in m a n u fa ctu rin g in d u s t r ie s v a r y w id e ly ,
d e p e n d in g on th e ir s k ill, the typ e of
p r o d u c t a s s e m b le d , the s iz e and lo c a t io n
o f the plan t in w h ich th ey a r e e m p lo y e d ,
and the m e th o d o f w a g e p a y m e n t. F o r
e x a m p le , a s s e m b le r s w h o a r e p aid on
the b a s is o f the n u m b e r o f it e m s a s s e m ­
b le d m a y e a r n m o r e than th o s e p aid o n
an h o u r ly b a s is .
A s s e m b ly jo b s a r e c o m m o n ly c l a s s i ­
f ie d to r e f l e c t the l e v e l o f s k ill and
r e s p o n s i b i li t y in v o lv e d . In its s u r v e y s
o f e a r n in g s in m a c h in e r y p la n ts, the

U . S. D e p a r tm e n t o f L a b or* s B u re a u of
L a b o r S ta tis tic s c l a s s i f i e s a s s e m b ly jo b s
a s c l a s s A , B , and C . A 1 9 5 9 -6 0 B L S
s u r v e y o f e a r n in g s o f a s s e m b le r s in
s u ch p la n ts in 21 la r g e c i t i e s and m e t ­
r o p o lit a n a r e a s sh ow s that the a v e r a g e
s t r a ig h t -t im e h o u r ly e a r n in g s o f c l a s s B
m a le a s s e m b le r s ra n g e d f r o m $ 1 .7 3 in
D a lla s to $ 2 .6 8 in P i t t s b u r g h ; and
e a r n in g s o f c l a s s C m a le a s s e m b le r s
ra n g e d f r o m $ 1 .4 3 in D a lla s to $ 2 .4 5
in M ilw a u k e e . (F o r the p u r p o s e o f th is
b u lle tin , c l a s s B and C a s s e m b l e r s a re
c o n s id e r e d to be s e m is k ille d w o r k e r s . )
The w o r k in g c o n d it io n s o f s e m is k ille d
a s s e m b l e r s d if fe r d e p e n d in g on the p a r ­
t ic u la r jo b p e r f o r m e d .
A s s e m b l e r s of
e l e c t r o n i c e q u ip m e n t m a y put togethers m a ll c o m p o n e n ts at a b e n c h in a r o o m
w h ich is c le a n , w e ll lig h te d , and f r e e
f r o m d u st. F l o o r a s s e m b le r s o f in d u s ­
t r ia l m a c h in e r y , on the o th e r hand, m a y
in s t a ll and a s s e m b le h e a v y p a r ts and
a r e o fte n e x p o s e d to c o n ta c t w ith o il
and g r e a s e .
A s s e m b l e r s on a s s e m b ly
lin e s m a y b e u n d e r p r e s s u r e to p e r f o r m
th e ir a s s ig n m e n ts in the tim e the c o n ­
v e y o r m o v e s the p a r ts o r s u b a s s e m b lie s
p a st th e ir w o r k s ta tio n s .
M a n y s e m is k il le d a s s e m b l e r s in
m a n u fa ctu rin g in d u s t r ie s a r e m e m b e r s
o f la b o r u n io n s .
T h e s e u n ion s in c lu d e
the In te r n a tio n a l A s s o c i a t i o n of M a ­
c h in is t s ; the I n t e r n a t i o n a l U nion of
E l e c t r i c a l , R a d io and M a ch in e W o r k e r s ;
and the In te r n a tio n a l U n ion , U n ited A u ­
t o m o b ile , A i r c r a f t and A g r ic u l t u r a l I m ­
p le m e n t W o r k e r s o f A m e r i c a .
M ost
la b o r -m a n a g e m e n t c o n t r a c t s in the m a n fa c tu r in g p la n ts in w h ic h a s s e m b le r s
a r e e m p lo y e d p r o v id e f o r f r in g e b e n e fits
su ch a s h o lid a y and v a c a t io n p a y, h e a lth
in s u r a n c e , life in s u r a n c e , and r e t i r e ­
m e n t p e n s io n s .

INSPECTORS
Nature of Work
A lm o s t e v e r y t h i n g m a n u fa c tu r e d ,
in c lu d in g th o s e p r o d u c ts we e a t, d rin k ,

10




w e a r , o r r id e in , m u s t be c a r e f u ll y
in s p e c t e d d u r in g the m a n u fa ctu rin g p r o c ­
e s s . Th e m i ll io n s of a u t o m o b ile s , s e w ­
ing m a c h in e s , t e l e v i s i o n s e t s , p r o d u c -

I n s p e c t o r s d o a v a r ie t y of jo b s in
m a n y in d u s t r ie s .
F o r e x a m p le , th ey
m a y b e e m p lo y e d in r a d io and t e l e v i s i o n
m a n u fa c tu r in g p la n ts to t e s t tu b e s and
c i r c u it s to se e that th e y m e e t s p e c i f i ­
c a t io n s . T h e y a re a ls o e m p lo y e d in the
a u t o m o b i l e in d u s tr y to e x a m in e ra w
m a t e r ia ls and p a r ts d u rin g the v a r io u s
s ta g e s o f m a n u fa ctu rin g .
I n s p e c t o r s o fte n k e e p r e c o r d s o f the
n u m b e r o f p a r ts th ey h av e in s p e c t e d ,
a c c e p t e d , and r e j e c t e d . W h en th ey fin d
that a la r g e n u m b e r o f p ie c e s a re
fa u lty , th e y n o tify th e ir s u p e r v is o r s s o
t h a t c o r r e c t i o n s ca n b e m a d e on the
p r o d u c tio n lin e .

Where Employed

Inspector

uses

checking

a

mirror

brushes

in

to
a

help

in

motor

tio n m a c h in e r y , and o th e r m a s s - p r o ­
d u c e d it e m s m u s t be in s p e c t e d to m a k e
s u re th ey o p e r a te p r o p e r l y . The w o r k ­
e r s w h o see to it that s iz e and q u a lity
o f ra w m a t e r i a l s , p a r t s , a s s e m b li e s ,
and the o p e r a t io n o f the fin is h e d p r o ­
d u c ts m e e t s p e c if ic a t io n s a re k n ow n as
in s p e c t o r s.
I n s p e c t o r s m a y lo o k f o r s c r a t c h e s
and o th e r d e fe c t s in p r o d u c ts o r p a r ts .
T h e y ofte n u se s im p le g a g e s to fin d out
w h eth er p a r ts a re m a d e to s p e c if ie d
s iz e s ; th ey m a y a ls o u s e m e a s u r in g d e ­
v i c e s s u ch a s m i c r o m e t e r s (a p r e c i s i o n m e a s u r i n g in s tr u m e n t) to c h e c k the
a c c u r a c y of the p a r t s . I n s p e c t o r s m a y
b e r e q u ir e d to r e a d s im p le w o r k o r d e r s
and d o a r it h m e t ic in v o lv in g d e c im a ls
and f r a c t i o n s w h en r e a d in g m e a s u r in g
in s t r u m e n t s . S om e in s p e c t o r s u s e h an d t o o ls su ch a s s c r e w d r i v e r s o r p l i e r s
in th e ir w o r k . (The w o r k d on e b y s e m i ­
s k ille d in s p e c t o r s in f a c t o r i e s is d i f f e r ­
ent f r o m that p e r f o r m e d b y s k ille d in ­
s p e c t o r s . S e m is k ille d in s p e c t o r s u s u a lly
w o r k u n d er c l o s e s u p e r v is io n ; s k ille d
i n s p e c t o r s w o r k u n d er g e n e r a l s u p e r ­
v i s io n .
In a d d itio n , s k ille d i n s p e c t o r s
a r e o fte n r e q u ir e d to r e a d b lu e p r in t s ,
in t e r p r e t s p e c if ic a t io n s , and u s e c o m ­
p le x p r e c is io n - m e a s u r i n g in s tr u m e n ts . )




M o r e than 200, 000 s e m is k ille d in ­
s p e c t o r s w e r e e m p lo y e d in a w id e v a r i ­
e ty o f m a n u fa ctu rin g p l a n t s in 1959.
P la n ts w h ic h p r o d u c e d a u t o m o b ile s and
p a r ts ; a ir c r a f t , m i s s i l e s and p a r ts ;
e l e c t r i c a l m a c h in e r y and e q u ip m e n t s u ch
a s e l e c t r i c a l m o t o r s, r a d io s , and r e f r i g ­
e r a t o r s ; m a c h in e r y ; ir o n and s t e e l; f a b ­
r ic a t e d m e t a l p r o d u c ts su ch as s t r u c t u r a l
s t e e l f o r b u ild in g s ; and fo o d p r o d u c ts
w e r e a m o n g the im p o r ta n t e m p lo y e r s
of in s p e c to r s .
A la r g e n u m b e r o f in ­
s p e c t o r s a ls o w e r e e m p lo y e d in the
c lo th in g , c h e m ic a l, and o rd n a n c e In d u s­
t r ie s.
M a n y o f the i n s p e c t i o n jo b s a re
fou n d in S ta tes w h ich a r e m a n u fa ctu rin g
c e n t e r s s u ch a s C a lif o r n ia , M ic h ig a n ,
N ew Y o r k , O h io, I llin o is , and P e n n s y l­
v a n ia .

Training, Other Qualifications,
and Advancement
I n s p e c t o r s g e n e r a lly le a r n the r e ­
q u ir e m e n t s o f th e ir jo b s d u rin g a b r i e f
p e r io d o f o n - t h e - jo b t r a i n i n g . T he t r a in ­
ing p e r i o d m a y v a r y f r o m a fe w h o u r s o r
d a y s to s e v e r a l m o n th s , d e p e n d in g u pon
the s k ill r e q u ir e d .
M a n y e m p lo y e r s p r e f e r w o r k e r s w ith
no p r e v io u s in s p e c t io n e x p e r i e n c e . T h e y
lo o k f o r a p p lica n ts w h o a re p h y s ic a lly
a b le , d e p e n d a b le , h ave g o o d e y e s ig h t ,

11

and ca n f o ll o w in s t r u c t io n s . S om e e m ­
p lo y e r s p r e f e r e x p e r ie n c e d p r o d u c tio n
w o r k e r s f o r in s p e c t io n j o b s .
A fe w
la r g e c o m p a n ie s g iv e aptitu de t e s t s in
s e le c t in g n ew e m p lo y e e s f o r in s p e c t io n
w o r k . F o r e x a m p le , in the e l e c t r o n i c s
in d u s tr y , n ew w o r k e r s m a y be g iv e n
t e s t s to d e te r m in e t h e ir a b ility to w o r k
w ith n u m b e r s .
E m p lo y e r s a ls o lo o k
f o r e m p lo y e e s w h o ca n d o w o r k r e ­
q u irin g co n s ta n t a tten tion .
M a n y w o m e n a r e e m p lo y e d a s in ­
s p e c t o r s b e c a u s e m a n y in s p e c t io n jo b s
a r e not p h y s ic a lly h a r d .
T h ey g e n ­
e r a l l y w o r k in p la n ts w h ich p r o d u c e
r e l a t iv e ly s m a ll and lig h t p r o d u c ts and
p a r ts s u ch a s e l e c t r i c a l and e l e c t r o n i c
e q u ip m e n t.
S om e s e m is k il le d i n s p e c t o r s w h o
s u p p le m e n t th e ir w o r k e x p e r ie n c e w ith
f o r m a l e d u c a t i o n a l c o u r s e s su ch as
b lu e p r in t r e a d in g , s h o p m a t h e m a t ic s ,
and e l e c t r i c a l t h e o r y m a y a d v a n ce to
jo b s as s k ille d i n s p e c t o r s . A fe w s e m i ­
s k ille d i n s p e c t o r s , a fte r a c q u ir in g s u f­
f ic ie n t e x p e r ie n c e and k n o w le d g e , m a y
a d v a n ce to f o r e m e n j o b s .

Employment Outlook
M a n y th ou sa n d s o f you n g w o r k e r s
w ill be a b le to fin d e m p lo y m e n t a s in ­
s p e c t o r s in m a n u fa ctu rin g in d u s t r ie s
d u r i n g the 1 9 6 0 -7 0 d e c a d e .
M o s t of
the in d u s t r ie s w h ich e m p lo y th e s e w o r k ­
e r s a re e x p e c t e d to i n c r e a s e th e ir e m ­
p lo y m e n t d u rin g th is p e r io d .
In a d d itio n to the new jo b s that w ill
be c r e a t e d b y i n c r e a s e s in e m p lo y m e n t,
r e p l a c e m e n t n e e d s w ill p r o v id e jo b
o p p o r tu n itie s f o r new w o r k e r s . A c o n ­
s id e r a b le n u m b e r o f jo b o p p o r tu n itie s
s h ou ld r e s u lt f r o m w o r k e r s w h o le a v e
th e ir j o b s , t r a n s fe r f r o m th is f ie l d of
w o r k , r e t i r e , o r d ie .
T he g r o w in g c o m p le x it y o f the p r o ­
d u c ts m a n u fa c tu r e d in ou r f a c t o r i e s and
r is in g q u a lity s ta n d a r d s sh ou ld r e s u lt
in a n eed f o r m o r e i n s p e c t o r s .
H ow ­
e v e r , the d em a n d f o r in s p e c t o r s m a y be

12




o f f s e t s o m e w h a t b y the tr e n d to w a r d the
u se o f m e c h a n iz e d and a u to m a tic in ­
s p e c t io n e q u ip m e n t.

Eornifigs and Working Conditions
E a r n in g s o f i n s p e c t o r s v a r y c o n ­
s id e r a b ly d e p e n d in g on th e ir s k ill, the
typ e o f p r o d u c t in s p e c t e d , the m e th o d
o f w a g e p a y m e n t, and the s iz e and l o c a ­
tio n o f the plan t in w h ich th e y a r e e m ­
p lo y e d .
I n s p e c t o r jo b s a r e c o m m o n ly
c l a s s i f i e d to r e f l e c t the l e v e l and s k ill
in v o lv e d .
In it s s u r v e y o f e a r n in g s in
m a c h in e r y p la n ts, the U. S. D e p a r tm e n t
o f L a b o r 's B u re a u o f L a b o r S t a tis tic s
c l a s s i f i e s i n s p e c t o r jo b s as c l a s s A ,
B, a n d C.
A 1 9 5 9 -6 0 B L S s u r v e y o f
e a r n in g s o f i n s p e c t o r s in s u ch p la n ts in
19 la r g e c i t i e s and m e t r o p o lit a n a r e a s
sh o w s that the a v e r a g e s t r a ig h t -t im e
h o u r l y e a r n in g s o f c l a s s B m a le in ­
s p e c t o r s ra n g e d f r o m $ 1 .9 2 in D a lla s
to $ 2 .7 6 i n H o u sto n ; a n d e a r n in g s o f
c l a s s C m a le i n s p e c t o r s ra n g e d f r o m
$ 1 .6 4 in N ew Y o r k C ity to $ 2 .5 1 in
P h ila d e lp h ia . (F o r the p u r p o s e of th is
b u lle tin , c l a s s B and C in s p e c t o r s a re
c o n s id e r e d to b e s e m is k ille d w o r k e r s . )
T he w o r k in g c o n d it io n s o f i n s p e c t o r s
v a r y c o n s i d e r a b ly . F o r e x a m p le , th ey
m a y w o r k in w e ll- li g h t e d , a i r - c o n d i ­
tio n e d w o r k p l a c e s in an a i r c r a f t o r
m i s s i l e p la n t; o th e r s m a y w o r k on the
p r o d u c tio n f l o o r o f a m a c h in e r y o r
m e t a l fa b r ic a t in g p la n t, o fte n e x p o s e d
to h ig h t e m p e r a t u r e s , o il, g r e a s e , and
n o is e .
M an y in s p e c t o r s e m p lo y e d in m a n u ­
fa c tu r in g in d u s t r ie s a r e m e m b e r s o f
la b o r u n io n s . The In te r n a tio n a l U n ion ,
U nited A u t o m o b ile , A i r c r a f t and A g r i ­
c u ltu r a l Im p le m e n t W o r k e r s o f A m e r i c a ;
the In te r n a tio n a l A s s o c ia t io n o f M a c h in ­
i s t s ; and the I n t e r n a t i o n a l U n ion o f
E l e c t r i c a l , R a d io and M a ch in e W o r k e r s
a r e a m o n g the l a r g e r u n ion s to w h ich
th e s e w o r k e r s b e lo n g .
M o s t o f the
la b o r -m a n a g e m e n t c o n t r a c t s p r o v id e f o r
fr in g e b e n e fits su ch a s p a id h o lid a y s
and v a c a t io n s , h e a l t h in s u r a n c e , life
in s u r a n c e , and r e t ir e m e n t p e n s io n s .

MACHINE TOOL OPERATORS
Nature of Work
A l m o s t e v e r y ite m p r o d u c e d b y
A m e r i c a n in d u s tr y co n ta in s m e t a l p a r ts
o r is m a n u fa c tu r e d b y m a c h in e s m a d e
of m e ta l p a rts.
M a n y o f th e s e p a r ts
a r e m a d e to p r e c i s e sh a p e s and s iz e s
b y a g r o u p o f w o r k e r s c a l le d m a ch in in g
w o r k e r s . A la r g e n u m b e r o f th e s e w o r k e r s a r e s e m is k ille d m a c h in e t o o l o p e r a ­
t o r s w h o u se s ta tio n a r y p o w e r - d r i v e n
m a c h in e s kn ow n a s m a c h in e t o o l s .
S e m is k ille d m a ch in e t o o l o p e r a t o r s
a re e s s e n t ia lly m a c h in e t e n d e r s w h o,
u n d er c l o s e s u p e r v is io n , c a r r y out s i m ­
p le o p e r a t i o n s w h ich ca n b e le a r n e d
q u ic k ly .
A t y p ic a l a s s ig n m e n t o f a
s e m is k il le d m a c h in e t o o l o p e r a t o r is to
p la c e a p ie c e o f ro u g h m e t a l in to an
a u to m a tic m a ch in e t o o l w h ich h a s b e e n
a d ju s te d f o r h im b y a s k ille d m a c h in e
t o o l o p e r a t o r o r a setu p m a n .
The
s e m is k ille d w o r k e r w a tc h e s the m a ch in e
o p e r a te and c a l ls h is s u p e r v is o r w h en
t r o u b le a r i s e s . The o p e r a t o r u s e s s p e ­
c i a l g a g e s to c h e c k the a c c u r a c y o f h is
w o r k . He m a y m a k e m in o r a d ju s tm e n ts
to k e e p the m a c h in e t o o l o p e r a tin g e f f i ­
c ie n t ly , but the s k ille d o p e r a t o r o r s e t ­
up m a n m a k e s m a jo r a d ju s tm e n ts .

to v e r y p r e c i s e s p e c if ic a t io n s .
A de­
ta ile d d is c u s s io n o f the w o r k p e r f o r m e d
b y th e s e s k ille d m a ch in in g w o r k e r s is
p r o v i d e d in the O c c u p a tio n a l O u tlook
H a n d b o o k , 1959 e d i t i o n ,
B u ll. 1255,
U. S. D e p a r tm e n t o f L a b o r , B u re a u o f
L a b o r S t a t is t ic s . )

Where Employed
M o r e than 4 00 , 000 s e m is k il le d m a ­
ch in e t o o l o p e r a t o r s w e r e e m p lo y e d in
m a c h i n i n g jo b s in m a n u fa ctu rin g in ­
d u s t r ie s in 1959.
T h e y a r e m a in ly
e m p lo y e d in f a c t o r i e s w h e r e m e ta l p a r ts
f o r a u t o m o b ile s , a ir c r a f t e n g in e s , m a ­
c h in e r y , and o th e r m e t a l p r o d u c ts a re
m a n u f a c t u r e d on a m a s s - p r o d u c t io n
b a s is .
T he s iz e o f the p la n t, th e w a y
in w h ich the w o r k is o r g a n iz e d , and the
e x te n t to w h ich m a c h in in g o p e r a tio n s
h ave b e e n s im p lif ie d d e te r m in e w h e th e r
s e m is k ille d o r s k ille d o p e r a t o r s w i ll be
e m p lo y e d . S e m is k ille d o p e r a t o r s u s u a l­
ly a r e e m p lo y e d in p r o d u c tio n jo b s w h e r e
la r g e q u a n titie s o f p a r ts a r e m a c h in e d .

L a th e s , d r i l l p r e s s e s , b o r in g m a ­
c h in e s , g r in d in g m a c h in e s , m illin g m a ­
c h in e s , p la n e r s , and s h a p e r s a re a m on g
the im p o r ta n t m a c h in e t o o l s u s e d b y
m a c h in e o p e r a t o r s . W o r k e r s a r e g iv e n
jo b t it le s b a s e d upon the k in d o f m a ­
ch in e th ey o p e r a t e , s u ch a s en gin e lath e
o p e r a t o r , m illin g m a c h in e o p e r a t o r ,
g r in d in g m a c h in e o p e r a t o r , and d r i l l
p re s s op e ra to r.
(The w o r k d on e by s e m is k il le d m a ­
ch in e t o o l o p e r a t o r s is d if fe r e n t f r o m
that p e r f o r m e d b y s k ille d m a ch in in g
w o r k e r s . F o r e x a m p le , s k ille d m a ch in e
t o o l o p e r a t o r s , w h o g e n e r a lly w o r k w ith
a s in g le ty p e o f m a c h in e , s e t up th e ir
ow n m a c h in e s and d o w o r k r e q u ir in g
g r e a t e r p r e c i s i o n . T o o l and d ie m a k e r s
and a ll-r o u n d m a c h i n i s t s a r e o th e r
s k ille d m a c h in in g w o r k e r s w h o ca n o p ­
e r a te a ll ty p e s o f m a c h in e t o o ls and
p e r f o r m m o r e c o m p le x j o b s , w o r k in g




Machine

tool

operator

adjusting,

lathe

13

F e w s e m is k ille d o p e r a t o r s a r e e m ­
p lo y e d in e ith e r the m a in te n a n c e d e ­
p a r tm e n ts o f a plan t o r in a m a ch in e
sh o p w h ich d o e s s m a ll qu a n tity p r o d u c ­
tio n w o r k .
M a c h i n e t o o l o p e r a t o r jo b s a re
fo u n d in g r e a t e s t n u m b e r in S ta tes in
w h ich the m e ta lw o r k in g in d u s t r ie s a re
lo c a t e d , su ch as C a lif o r n ia , M ic h ig a n ,
N ew Y o r k , O h io, I llin o is , and P e n n s y l­
v a n ia .

Training, Other Qualifications,
and Advancement
N e a r ly a ll s e m is k ille d m a c h in e t o o l
o p e r a t o r s in m a n u fa ctu rin g in d u s tr ie s
le a r n th e ir s k ills on the jo b .
A ft e r a
new w o r k e r is h ir e d , he u s u a lly s ta r ts
h is tr a in in g by o b s e r v in g a s k ille d o p ­
e r a t o r at w o r k .
W hen the le a r n e r is
put in c h a r g e of a m a c h in e , he ofte n
c o n tin u e s to be s u p e r v is e d f o r a tim e
b y a m o r e e x p e r i e n c e d w o r k e r . In
m o s t c a s e s , the new w o r k e r le a r n s ,
on the jo b , to u se the n e c e s s a r y m e a s ­
u rin g in s tr u m e n ts and to d o the a r it h ­
m e t i c r e q u ir e d .
S om e of the l a r g e r c o m p a n ie s h ave
f o r m a l tr a in in g p r o g r a m s f o r n ew o p ­
e ra tors.
A c o m b in a tio n o f c l a s s r o o m
and o n - t h e - jo b in s t r u c t io n is o f f e r e d
to a cq u a in t the new w o r k e r w ith the d e ­
t a ils o f m a c h i n e t o o l o p e r a t io n , m a ­
ch in in g p r a c t i c e , and the re a d in g o f
s im p le b lu e p r in t s .
T he le n g th o f tim e
r e q u ir e d to b e c o m e an e x p e r i e n c e d
s e m is k ille d m a c h in e t o o l o p e r a t o r d e ­
p e n d s , to a g r e a t ex te n t, on in d iv id u a l
a b ility .
S e m is k ille d o p e r a t o r s g e n ­
e r a l ly le a r n th e ir jo b s w ith in a fe w
m o n th s . (A p e r io d o f 1^ to 2 y e a r s of
o n - t h e - jo b tr a in in g and e x p e r ie n c e is
g e n e r a lly r e q u ir e d to b e c o m e a s k ille d
m a c h in e t o o l o p e r a t o r . )
A s a s e m is k ille d o p e r a t o r b e c o m e s
m o r e e x p e r ie n c e d and le a r n s the v a r ­
io u s d u tie s o f m a c h in e t o o l o p e r a tio n ,
and a s he b e c o m e s m o r e s k ille d in
r e a d in g b lu e p r in t s and p lan nin g the s te p s
o f m a c h in in g w o r k , he m a y m o v e in to
the s k i l l e d o p e r a t o r c a t e g o r y . M an y
a ll -r o u n d m a c h in is t s and s o m e t o o l and
d ie m a k e r s b e g a n th e ir c a r e e r s as
s e m is k il le d o p e r a t o r s .

14




A lth o u g h th e r e a r e no s p e c ia l e d u ­
c a tio n a l r e q u ir e m e n t s f o r s e m is k ille d
o p e r a t o r j o b s , you n g p e r s o n s w h o h ave
a k n o w le d g e o f m a th e m a t ic s and b lu e ­
p rin t r e a d in g m a y h ave b e t t e r jo b o p ­
p o r tu n it ie s and a d v a n ce m e n t p o s s i b i l ­
it ie s .
In h i r i n g u n s k ille d o p e r a t o r s ,
e m p lo y e r s a ls o o fte n lo o k f o r p e r s o n s
w ith m e c h a n ic a l aptitu de w h o h av e had
s o m e e x p e r ie n c e w o r k in g w ith m a c h in ­
ery.

Employment Outlook
The a n tic ip a te d i n c r e a s e in e m p lo y ­
m e n t in the m e ta lw o r k in g m a n u fa ctu rin g
in d u s t r ie s in the I 9 6 0 1 s is e x p e c t e d to
i n c r e a s e the d e m a n d f o r s e m is k ille d m a ­
ch in e t o o l o p e r a t o r s . In a d d itio n to the
d e m a n d c r e a t e d f o r th e s e w o r k e r s by
the g r o w th o f the m e ta lw o r k in g in d u s ­
t r i e s , the n e e d to r e p l a c e th o s e w h o
le a v e th e ir j o b s , t r a n s fe r to o th e r f ie l d s
o f w o r k , r e t i r e , o r d ie w ill c r e a t e a
c o n s id e r a b le n u m b e r o f jo b o p p o r tu n itie s
e a c h y e a r f o r new w o r k e r s to e n te r th is
w ork.
T e c h n o lo g ic a l d e v e lo p m e n t s , h o w ­
e v e r , m a y a ff e c t b o th the n u m b e r and
s k ill r e q u ir e m e n t s of s e m is k il le d m a ­
ch in e t o o l o p e r a t o r s .
The co n tin u e d
d e v e lo p m e n t and u s e o f f a s t e r and m o r e
a u to m a tic m a c h in e t o o l s w i ll r e s u lt in
g r e a t e r output p e r m a c h in e t o o l o p e r a t o r .
If the u s e o f ta p e c o n t r o ll e d m a ch in e
t o o ls sh o u ld b e c o m e w id e s p r e a d , th is
c o u ld slo w up s o m e w h a t the e x p e c t e d
i n c r e a s e in the e m p lo y m e n t o f s e m i ­
s k ille d m a c h in e t o o l o p e r a t o r s .
In th is
m e th o d o f m a c h in in g , p a r t d im e n s io n s ,
t o l e r a n c e s , c u tte r sh a p e s and s i z e s , and
cu ttin g p ath s and s e q u e n c e s a r e t r a n s ­
la te d i n t o n u m b e r s , o r c o d e s r e p r e ­
sen tin g n u m b e r s .
The n u m b e r s a re
p u n ch ed on c a r d s o r ta p e s w h ic h a re
in s e r t e d in to e l e c t r o n i c d e v ic e s w h ich
th en run the m a c h in e t o o l a u t o m a tic a lly .
T h is m e th o d fu r th e r r e d u c e s and s i m ­
p li fi e s the w o r k o f the s e m is k il le d m a ­
ch in e t o o l o p e r a t o r .

Earnings and Working Conditions
S e m is k ille d m a c h in e t o o l o p e r a t o r s
in m a n u fa c tu r in g in d u s t r ie s a r e p a id on

the b a s is o f an h o u r ly w a g e ra te o r n u m ­
b e r o f p ie c e s th ey p r o d u c e , o r a c o m ­
b in a tio n o f b oth m e th o d s of w a ge p a y ­
m e n t.
M a ch in e t o o l o p e r a t o r jo b s a re
c o m m o n ly c l a s s i f i e d to r e f l e c t the le v e l
o f s k ill and r e s p o n s i b i li t y in v o lv e d .
In
its s u r v e y s o f e a r n in g s in m a c h in e r y
p la n ts, the U. S. D e p a r tm e n t of L a b or* s
B u rea u o f L a b o r S ta tis tic s c l a s s i f i e s m a ­
ch in e t o o l o p e r a t o r jo b s a s c l a s s A , B ,
and C . A 1 9 5 9 -6 0 B L S s u r v e y o f e a r n ­
in g s o f m a c h in e t o o l o p e r a t o r s in su ch
p l a n t s in 21 la r g e c i t i e s and m e t r o ­
p o lita n a r e a s sh ow s that the a v e r a g e
s t r a ig h t -t im e h o u r ly e a r n in g s o f c l a s s
B m a le m a ch in e t o o l o p e r a t o r s ra n g e d
f r o m $ 1 .8 9 in D a lla s to $ 2 .6 4 i n San
F r a n c is c o - O a k la n d ; and c l a s s C m a le
m a c h in e t o o l o p e r a t o r s ra n g e d f r o m
$ 1 . 66 in D a lla s to $ 2 . 39 in M ilw a u k e e .
(F o r the p u r p o s e o f th is r e p o r t , c l a s s B
and C m a c h in e t o o l o p e r a t o r s a re c o n ­
s id e r e d s e m is k ille d o p e r a t o r s . )
S e m is k ille d m a ch in e t o o l o p e r a t o r s
m u s t f o llo w s a fe ty p r e c a u tio n s b e c a u s e

th e y w o r k a r o u n d h ig h s p e e d m e t a l ­
w o r k in g m a c h in e r y . T h e y a r e r e q u ir e d
to w e a r p r o t e c t iv e g o g g le s and to a v o id
w e a r in g l o o s e - f i t t i n g g a r m e n t s w hen
w o r k in g .
I n c r e a s i n g e m p h a s is upon
sa fe ty r e g u la tio n s h as r e d u c e d the a c c i ­
d en t ra te f o r th e s e w o r k e r s in r e c e n t
years.
M an y s e m is k ille d m a c h in e t o o l o p ­
e r a t o r s in m a n u fa ctu rin g in d u s t r ie s a re
m e m b e r s o f la b o r u n io n s .
A m o n g the
la b o r o r g a n iz a tio n s a c tiv e in the f a c ­
t o r ie s w h e r e o p e r a t o r s a re e m p lo y e d
a re the In te r n a tio n a l A s s o c i a t i o n of
M a c h in is t s ; t h e In te r n a tio n a l U n ion of
E l e c t r i c a l , R a d io and M a ch in e W o r k ­
e r s ; the In te r n a tio n a l U nion ,
U nited
A u t o m o b ile , A i r c r a f t and A g r ic u lt u r a l
Im p le m e n t W o r k e r s of A m e r i c a ; and
the U nited S t e e lw o r k e r s o f A m e r i c a .
M o s t la b o r -m a n a g e m e n t a g r e e m e n t s
p r o v id e f o r fr in g e b e n e fits su ch as
h o lid a y and v a c a tio n p ay, h ealth i n s u r ­
a n c e , life in s u r a n c e , a n d r e t ir e m e n t
p e n s io n s .

MACHINE WELDING OPERATORS AND OXYGEN AND ARC CUTTERS
Nature of Work
M an y o f the p a r ts u s e d in a u t o m o ­
b i l e s , a i r p l a n e s , r e f r i g e r a t o r s , and
th o u sa n d s o f o th e r p r o d u c ts a re jo in e d
to g e t h e r by a m e ta lw o r k in g p r o c e s s
k n ow n as w e ld in g w h ich is u se d w id e ly
in m a n u fa ctu rin g and r e p a ir o p e r a t io n s .
W e ld e r s j o i n m e t a ls by a p p ly in g in te n s e
h ea t to m e lt the e d g e s o f the m e ta l and,
s o m e t im e s , p r e s s u r e to f o r m a p e r m a ­
nent b on d .
F i l l e r m e ta l m a y o r m a y
not b e u s e d in f o r m in g the w e ld . C lo s e l y
r e la t e d to w e ld in g is " t h e r m a l cu ttin g "
(a ls o k now n a s o x y g e n cu ttin g o r a r c
c u t t in g ).
O x y g en and a r c c u t t e r s u se
t o r c h e s to cu t o r t r im m e ta l o b je c t s to
a d e s i r e d s iz e o r s h a p e .
T h ey a ls o
r e m o v e e x c e s s m e ta l f r o m c a s t in g s and
cu t s c r a p m e ta l in to p ie c e s o f m a n a g e a b le
s iz e .
M o s t o f the m o r e than 3 5 d iffe r e n t
w a y s o f w e ld in g
m e t a l s h ave b e e n
a d a p ted to s e m ia u to m a tic o r a u to m a tic




Welding

machine

semiautomatic
weld

operator

welding
a

steel

using

machine

a
to

pipe

15

w e ld in g p r o c e d u r e s . T h e s e w e ld in g o p ­
e r a tio n s a r e p r i m a r il y p e r f o r m e d b y
s e m is k ille d m a c h in e o p e r a t o r s .
S e m is k ille d w e ld in g m a ch in e o p e r a ­
t o r s in m a n u fa ctu rin g in d u s t r ie s o p e r ­
ate m a c h in e s w h ich w e ld m e ta l p a r ts by
b rin g in g th em to g e th e r u n d er h e a t and
pressu re.
The o p e r a t o r s e ts the c o n ­
t r o l s o f the m a c h in e f o r the d e s i r e d
e l e c t r i c c u r r e n t and p r e s s u r e , f e e d s and
a lin e s the w o r k , and r e m o v e s it a fte r
the w e ld in g o p e r a tio n is c o m p le t e d .
S e m is k ille d th e r m a l c u t t e r s w o r k
w ith e ith e r h a n d -g u id e d t o r c h e s o r c u t­
ting m a c h in e s . In the o x y g e n cu ttin g
p r o c e s s , the s e m is k ille d o p e r a t o r d i ­
r e c t s a fla m e o f o x y g e n and fu e l g a s on
the w o r k a r e a un til the m e ta l b e g in s to
m e lt .
He then r e l e a s e s an a d d itio n a l
s t r e a m o f ox y g en at h ig h e r p r e s s u r e to
cu t the m e t a l. The o p e r a t o r p r e p a r e s f o r
the cu ttin g jo b b y a tta ch in g the p r o p e r
t o r c h tip f o r the p a r t ic u la r j o b , c o n n e c t ­
in g the t o r c h to the g a s and o x y g e n h o s e ,
and r e g u la tin g the flo w o f g a s e s in to the
t o r c h f o r the d e s i r e d cu ttin g f la m e .
He
then cu ts th ro u g h the m e t a l, g u id in g the
t o r c h by hand a lon g p r e v io u s ly m a r k e d
lin e s o r fo llo w in g a te m p la te o r p a tte rn .
He m a y m a r k g u id e lin e s on the m e ta l
fo llo w in g b lu e p r in t s o r o th e r i n s t r u c ­
tio n s . (A r c cu ttin g d if f e r s f r o m o x y g e n
cu ttin g in that the o r ig in a l s o u r c e o f
h e a t is an e l e c t r i c a r c .
A s in o x y g e n
cu ttin g , an a d d itio n a l s t r e a m o f g a s is
r e l e a s e d in cu ttin g the m e t a l. ) In m a n y
c a s e s , the cu ttin g t o r c h i s m o u n te d on
a m a c h in e w h ic h , b y e l e c t r o n i c o r m e ­
c h a n ic a l m e a n s , a u t o m a tic a lly fo llo w s
the p r o p e r lin e o f cu t.

Where Employed
In 1959, an e s tim a te d 200, 000 o r
m o r e s e m is k ille d w e ld in g m a c h in e o p ­
e r a t o r s and c u t t e r s w e r e e m p lo y e d in
m a n u fa ctu rin g in d u s t r ie s th ro u g h o u t the
country.
T h e ir p r in c ip a l e m p lo y e r s
w e r e m a n u fa c tu r e r s o f b o i l e r s and s h e e tm e t a l p r o d u c t s , m o t o r v e h i c l e and
e q u ip m e n t p la n ts, the a ir c r a f t in d u s tr y ,
and m e ta lw o r k in g r e p a ir s h o p s . O th er
im p o r ta n t e m p lo y e r s o f m a ch in e w e ld e r s
w e r e s t e e l m i l l s , m e t a l-s t a m p in g e s ­
ta b lis h m e n ts , and m a c h i n e r y p la n ts.

16




A m o n g the m a jo r f a c t o r y e m p lo y e r s o f
c u t t e r s w e r e s t e e l m i l l s , m a c h in e r y
p la n ts , and fa b r ic a t e d s t r u c t u r a l- s t e e l
and b o il e r sh op p r o d u c t p la n ts.
B e c a u s e m a c h in e w e ld in g and cu ttin g
p r o c e s s e s a r e w id e ly u s e d in A m e r ic a n
in d u s tr y , th e s e w o r k e r s ca n fin d jo b s
in e v e r y State. H o w e v e r , m o s t jo b s f o r
s e m is k ille d w e ld in g m a c h in e o p e r a t o r s
and cu tte r s a r e fou n d in the m a jo r m e t a l ­
w o r k in g a r e a s .
M o r e than 40 p e r c e n t
a re e m p lo y e d in M ic h ig a n , P e n n s y lv a n ia ,
O h io, I llin o is , a n d C a lif o r n ia .
L a rg e
n u m b e r s a r e e m p l o y e d in D e t r o it ,
C h ic a g o , P h ila d e lp h ia , L o s A n g e le s , and
o th e r im p o r ta n t m e ta lw o r k in g c e n t e r s .

Training, Other Qualifications,
and Advancement
T r a in in g r e q u ir e m e n t s f o r the m a ­
ch in e w e ld in g o p e r a t o r 1 s jo b in m a n u ­
fa c t u r in g i n d u s t r i e s d e p e n d upon the
p a r t i c u l a r typ e o f e q u ip m e n t u s e d .
M o s t o p e r a t o r s le a r n th e ir w o r k in a
fe w w e e k s .
L ittle s k ill is r e q u ir e d f o r m a n y a r c
o r o x y g e n cu ttin g j o b s , and, g e n e r a lly ,
th e y c a n be le a r n e d in a fe w w e e k s o f
o n - t h e - jo b t r a i n i n g .
H ow ever, th e
cu ttin g o f s o m e o f the n e w e r m e t a ls and
a llo y s r e q u ir e s a k n o w le d g e o f the q u a l­
it ie s o f m e t a ls as w e ll as g r e a t e r s k ill
in fla m e cu ttin g . M a ch in e w e ld in g and
t h e r m a l cu ttin g r e q u ir e a s te a d y hand,
g o o d e y e -h a n d c o o r d in a t io n , and g o o d
e y e s ig h t.
Y ou ng p e r s o n s o fte n s ta r t in s im p le
m a c h in e w e ld in g p r o d u c tio n jo b s in w h ich
the typ e and th ic k n e s s o f m e t a l, as w e ll
as the p o s it io n o f the w o r k in the w e ld ­
in g o p e r a t io n , r a r e l y c h a n g e .
S om e
la r g e c o m p a n ie s e m p lo y g e n e r a l h e lp e r s
w h o , i f th e y sh ow p r o m i s e , m a y be
g i v e n o p p o r tu n itie s to b e c o m e s e m i ­
s k ille d w e ld in g m a c h in e o p e r a t o r s and
a rc or oxygen cu tters.
A you n g m a n w h o is h ir e d a s a
m a ch in e o p e r a t o r w ill u s u a lly p e r f o r m
r e p e t it iv e w o r k o r w o r k w h ich d o e s not
in v o lv e c r i t i c a l s a fe ty and s tre n g th r e ­
q u ir e m e n t s . The w o r k is u s u a lly don e
w ith the m e ta l in o n ly one p o s it io n

(fla t,
ta l) .

v e r tic a l,

overh ead,

o r h o r iz o n ­

S om e s e m is k ille d w e ld in g m a c h in e
o p e r a t o r s m a y b e c o m e s k ille d m a n u a l
w e l d e r s o r e v e n f o r e m e n Who s u p e r v is e
the w o r k o f o th e r w e l d e r s . O c c a s io n a lly ,
s o m e o p e r a t o r s m a y b e p r o m o t e d to jo b s
a s in s p e c t o r s w h e r e th ey c h e c k w e ld s
to fin d out w h e th e r th ey m e e t s ta n d a r d s ,
s u ch a s s a fe ty , o r s tre n g th , and w h e th e r
the q u a lity o f w o r k m a n s h ip is a d eq u a te.

Employment Outlook
The g e n e r a lly f a v o r a b l e lo n g -r u n
o u tlo o k in the m e ta lw o r k in g in d u s t r ie s ,
the w id e r u s e o f m a c h in e w e ld in g p r o c ­
e s s e s , and the in t r o d u c tio n o f n ew a u to ­
m a t ic p r o c e s s e s a re e x p e c t e d to r e ­
su lt in a la r g e i n c r e a s e in the n u m b er
o f m a c h in e w e ld in g jo b s in m a n u fa ctu rin g
in d u s t r ie s in the I 9 6 0 1 s.
E m p lo y m e n t
o f th e s e w o r k e r s is e x p e c t e d to exp an d
at a f a s t e r ra te than to ta l m a n u fa ctu rin g
e m p lo y m e n t d u rin g th is p e r io d b e c a u s e
o f the i n c r e a s e d u se o f the m a c h in e w e ld ­
in g p r o c e s s in s u ch a c t iv it ie s a s the
m a n u fa ctu re o f m o t o r v e h i c l e s and a i r ­
c r a f t , and m a c h in e r y ; and the p r o d u c tio n
o f lig h t, s t r e a m lin e d r a i lr o a d c a r s. E m ­
p lo y m e n t o f th e s e w o r k e r s w ill g r o w
r a p id ly d e s p ite the i n c r e a s e d u se o f
m o r e r a p id and h ig h ly a u to m a tic w e ld in g
m a c h in e s.
E m p lo y m e n t o f a r c o r o x y g e n cu tte r s
is e x p e c t e d to r i s e s o m e w h a t d u rin g the
I960* s as the r e s u lt o f the g e n e r a l e x ­
p a n s io n o f m e ta lw o r k in g a c t iv it y .
T h is
r i s e w ill o c c u r d e s p ite in c r e a s e d u se o f
cu ttin g m a c h i n e s w h ich w ill t e n d to
r e s t r i c t the g r o w th o f th is o c c u p a tio n .
R e p la c e m e n t n e e d s r e s u ltin g f r o m
w o r k e r s w h o le a v e th e ir j o b s , t r a n s fe r
to o th e r f ie l d s o f w o r k , r e t i r e , o r d ie
w ill p r o v id e m a n y jo b o p e n in g s f o r new




w o r k e r s in the m a ch in e w e ld in g and
cu ttin g f i e l d s . R e t ir e m e n t s and d e a th s
w ill r e s u l t i n a b o u t 2 ,5 0 0 to 3 ,5 0 0
o p e n in g s e a c h y e a r .

Earnings and Working Conditions
E a r n in g s o f w e ld in g m a ch in e o p ­
e r a t o r s in m a n u fa c tu r in g in d u s t r ie s d e ­
pend on the s k ill o f the o p e r a t o r , the
ty p e s o f w e ld in g m a c h in e u s e d , the in d u s ­
tr y , and the l o c a li t y in w h ich the o p ­
e r a t o r is e m p lo y e d .
A n e x a m in a tio n o f s e v e r a l l a b o r m a n a g e m e n ts c o n t r a c t s in the m e t a l­
w o r k in g in d u s tr ie s in d ic a t e s that m a c h in e
w e ld in g o p e r a t o r s e a r n e d f r o m a bou t
$ 2 .3 5 to $ 2 .8 0 an h ou r in 1 9 5 9 -6 0 .
E a r n in g s o f o x y g e n c u t t e r s a r e ro u g h ly
s im ila r to th o s e o f m a c h in e w e l d e r s .
M a ch in e w e ld in g o p e r a t i o n s a r e
l a r g e l y f r e e f r o m the h a z a r d s a s s o c ia t e d
w ith o th e r w e ld in g m e th o d s .
In s o m e
j o b s , m a c h in e w e ld in g o p e r a t o r s w e a r
a c l e a r e y e s h ie ld o r c l e a r g o g g le s to
p r o t e c t th e ir e y e s .
M an y s e m is k ille d w e ld in g m a ch in e
o p e r a t o r s and a r c and o x y g e n c u t t e r s in
m a n u fa ctu rin g in d u s t r ie s a r e u n ion m e m ­
b ers.
A m o n g the la b o r o r g a n iz a tio n s
w h ich in c lu d e th e s e w o r k e r s in th e ir
m e m b e r s h ip a re the In te r n a tio n a l A s s o ­
c ia tio n o f M a c h in is ts ; the In te rn a tio n a l
U n ion , U n ited A u t o m o b ile , A i r c r a f t and
A g r i c u l t u r a l Im p le m e n t W o r k e r s o f
A m e r i c a ; the In te r n a tio n a l B r o th e r h o o d
o f B o il e r m a k e r s , I r o n S h i p b u i l d e r s ,
B la c k s m it h s , F o r g e r s and H e lp e r s ; and
the U n ited S t e e lw o r k e r s o f A m e r i c a .
M o s t la b o r -m a n a g e m e n t c o n t r a c t s p r o ­
v id e e m p lo y e e s w ith b e n e fit p r o g r a m s
w h ich m a y in c lu d e p aid h o lid a y s and
v a c a t io n s , h o s p it a liz a t io n , m e d ic a l and
s u r g i c a l in s u r a n c e , l i f e in s u r a n c e ,
s ic k n e s s and a c c id e n t in s u r a n c e , and
r e t ir e m e n t p e n s io n s .

17

POWER TRUCK OPERATORS
Nature of Work

o ilin g , c h e c k in g w a te r in b a t t e r ie s , and
m a k in g s im p le a d ju s tm e n ts .

In the p a s t, m a n u a l w o r k e r s in f a c ­
t o r i e s u s u a lly d id the h a r d p h y s ic a l
la b o r o f m o v in g ra w m a t e r ia ls and p r o ­
d u c ts . T o d a y , m a n y h e a v y m a t e r ia ls a re
m o v e d , w ith little p h y s ic a l e f f o r t , by
w o r k e r s w h o o p e r a te v a r io u s ty p e s of
s e lf - p o w e r e d tr u c k s w h ich ca n e a s ily
c a r r y ton s o f m a t e r ia l and lift it to
h e ig h ts o f 18 o r m o r e fe e t .
A ty p ic a l tr u c k o p e r a te d by th e s e
w o r k e r s is the f o r k li f t tr u c k w h ich h as
a h y d r a u lic l i f t i n g m e c h a n is m ; o th er
p o w e r t r u c k s m a y h ave a tta c h m e n ts su ch
a s s c o o p s to lift c o a l o r o th e r lo o s e
m a t e r ia l and to w b a r s to p u ll one o r
m o r e s m a ll t r a i l e r s .
P o w e r tr u c k o p e r a t o r s s ta r t the
tr u c k , m a k e it g o fo r w a r d o r b a c k ­
w a r d , stop the tr u c k , and c o n t r o l the
liftin g m e c h a n is m and a tta c h m e n ts by
m o v i n g fo o t p e d a l s a n d / o r l e v e r s .
P o w e r tr u c k o p e r a t o r s m a y be r e q u ir e d
to k e e p r e c o r d s o f m a t e r ia l m o v e d , d o
s o m e m a n u a l lo a d in g and u n loa d in g o f
m a t e r i a l s , and m a in ta in th e ir t r u c k s
in g o o d w o r k in g c o n d itio n b y c le a n in g ,

The d r i v e r m u s t u se c a r e and s k ill
in d r iv in g h is tr u c k .
F o r e x a m p le , in
d r iv in g th ro u g h a i s l e s w h e r e m a t e r i a l
is s t o r e d o r w h en lo a d in g o r r e m o v in g
m a t e r ia ls f r o m s to c k , he m u s t be a b le
to ju d g e d is ta n c e s o that n o d a m a g e
occu rs.
Th e o p e r a t o r a ls o m u s t kn ow
h ow m u ch o f a lo a d the tr u c k ca n c a r r y
and the k in d s o f jo b s it ca n d o.

Where Employed
S e m is k ille d p o w e r t r u c k e r s a re e m ­
p lo y e d in a ll ty p e s o f m a n u fa ctu rin g in ­
d u s t r ie s .
M a n y o f th e s e w o r k e r s a re
e m p lo y e d in m e ta l and m e ta lw o r k in g
p la n ts w h ich m a n u fa c tu r e p r o d u c ts su ch
a s a u t o m o b ile s and a u t o m o b ile p a r ts ,
m a c h in e r y , f a b r ic a t e d m e ta l p r o d u c t s ,
and i r o n and s t e e l.
In a d d itio n to w o r k in g in f a c t o r i e s ,
la r g e n u m b e r s o f th e s e w o r k e r s a r e e m ­
p lo y e d in c o m m e r c i a l e s t a b lis h m e n t s ,
w a r e h o u s e s , d e p o t s , d o c k t e r m in a ls ,
m i n e s , and o th e r p la c e s w h e r e g r e a t
q u a n titie s o f m a t e r ia ls m u s t be m o v e d .
In 1958, abou t 8, 000 f o r k li f t tr u c k o p ­
e r a t o r s w e r e e m p lo y e d b y the F e d e r a l
G ov ern m en t m o s t o f w hom w e re e m ­
p lo y e d b y the A r m y , N avy, and A ir
F orce.
M an y o f th e s e jo b s a re fou n d w h e r e
the m e ta lw o r k in g in d u s t r ie s a re c o n ­
c e n tr a t e d . L a r g e n u m b e r s o f in d u s tr ia l
p o w e r tr u c k o p e r a t o r s w o r k in C a lifo r n ia ,
M ic h ig a n , N ew Y o r k , O h io , I l l i n o i s ,
and P e n n s y lv a n ia .

Training, Other Qualifications,
and Advancement

Fo rklift

truck

heavy

18




load

operator
of

moving

material

a

M o s t p e r s o n s le a r n to o p e r a te a
p o w e r tr u c k in a fe w d a y s .
H ow ever,
it ta k e s s e v e r a l w e e k s to le a r n the
p h y s ic a l la y o u t and o p e r a t io n o f a plan t,
a s w e ll as the m o s t e f fi c i e n t w a y of
h an d lin g the m a t e r i a l s to be m o v e d ,

L a r g e c o m p a n ie s g e n e r a lly r e q u ir e
a p p lic a n ts f o r a p o w e r tr u c k o p e r a t o r
jo b to p a s s a p h y s ic a l e x a m i n a t i o n .
M a n y la r g e e m p lo y e r s a ls o h ave f o r m a l
tr a in in g p r o g r a m s f o r new e m p lo y e e s .
In th e s e tr a in in g p r o g r a m s , the e m p lo y e e
le a r n s how to o p e r a te the p o w e r tr u c k ,
h ow to do s im p le m a in te n a n c e w o r k ,
p r in c ip le s o f lo a d in g and h an d lin g m a ­
t e r i a l s , plan t la y o u t and plan t o p e r a ­
tio n , and s a fe d r iv in g p r a c t i c e s and
ru le s.
A d v a n c e m e n t is lim it e d . A fe w
o p e r a t o r s m a y b e c o m e m a t e r ia ls m o v e ­
m e n t f o r e m e n o r s u p e r v is o r s .

Employment Outlook
P o w e r tr u c k o p e r a t o r jo b s in m a n u ­
fa c tu r in g in d u s t r ie s a r e e x p e c t e d to in ­
c r e a s e c o n s i d e r a b l y in the 1 9 6 0 's .
M o s t o f the in d u s t r ie s w h ich e m p lo y
la r g e n u m b e r s o f th e s e w o r k e r s a r e
e x p e c t e d to h ave a lo n g -r a n g e u pw ard
tr e n d in e m p lo y m e n t. R e p l a c e m e n t
n e e d s r e s u ltin g f r o m t r a n s f e r s to o th e r
j o b s , r e t ir e m e n t s , and d ea th s a ls o w ill
p r o v id e m a n y a d d itio n a l jo b o p e n in g s .
The co n tin u e d d e v e lo p m e n t and u se
o f m o r e e f fic ie n t p o w e r tr u c k s and o th e r
m e c h a n iz e d m a t e r ia ls h an d lin g e q u ip ­
m e n t c o u ld r e d u c e s o m e w h a t the e x ­
p e c te d i n c r e a s e in the e m p lo y m e n t o f
th e s e w o r k e r s .
F o r e x a m p le , n e w
m e c h a n iz e d m a t e r ia ls h an d lin g e q u ip ­
m e n t, su ch a s co n tin u o u s c o n v e y o r s y s ­
t e m s , m o v e s m a t e r ia ls in fix e d paths
at co n s ta n t r a t e s o f s p e e d , e lim in a tin g
b o ttle n e c k s and a llo w in g f o r a c c u r a t e
p r o d u c t i o n c o n t r o l. T h is m e th o d o f
m a t e r ia ls h an d lin g m a y r e s u lt in l e s s
u se o f p o w e r tr u c k s in s o m e p la n ts.
On the o th e r hand, m a n y c o m p a n ie s
w h ich u se fe w o r no p o w e r tr u c k s
to d a y w ill r e q u i r e m a n y s e m is k ille d




p o w e r tr u c k o p e r a t o r s a s th e y m e c h ­
a n iz e th e ir m a t e r ia ls h an d lin g o p e r a ­
tio n s .
D e s p ite m o r e e f fi c i e n t p o w e r
tr u c k s and m e c h a n iz e d e q u ip m e n t, the
m o r e w id e s p r e a d u se o f p o w e r tr u c k s
w ill r e s u lt in a s ig n ific a n t g r o w th in th is
o c c u p a tio n .

Earnings and Working Conditions
P o w e r tr u c k o p e r a t o r s e m p lo y e d in
m a n u fa ctu rin g in d u s t r ie s g e n e r a lly a r e
p aid an h o u r ly r a te .
A c c o r d i n g to
19 5 9 -6 0 w a ge s u r v e y s m a d e b y the U. S.
D e p a r tm e n t o f L a b o r ' s B u re a u o f L a b o r
S t a t i s t i c s in 1 9 5 9 -6 0 , the a v e r a g e
s t r a ig h t -t im e h o u r ly e a r n in g s o f f o r k ­
lift p o w e r tr u c k o p e r a t o r s in m a n u fa c ­
tu rin g p l a n t s i n 59 c i t i e s and a r e a s
ra n g e d f r o m $ 1 .3 1 in J a c k s o n , M iss.^
to $ 2 .7 1 in A k r o n , O h io.
S a fety in s t r u c t io n is an im p o r ta n t
p a r t o f the jo b tr a in in g in p o w e r t r u c k ­
ing w o r k . F o r e x a m p le , m a n y o f th e s e
w o r k e r s a r e s u b je c t to h a z a r d s - - su ch
a s fa llin g o b je c t s and c o l l i s i o n s b e tw e e n
v e h ic le s .
T he d r i v e r m a y o p e r a te h is
tr u c k in s id e b u ild in g s a s w e ll as o u t­
d o o r s and he is e x p o s e d to v a r io u s
w e a th e r c o n d it io n s . S om e o p e r a t o r s m a y
h an d le l o o s e m a t e r ia l w h ich ca n be
d ir t y o r d u sty .
P o w e r tr u c k o p e r a t o r s h ave s o m e ­
w hat v a r ie d w o r k in m o v in g m a t e r ia ls
th ro u g h o u t a p la n t. T h e ir w o r k is lik e ly
to be l e s s r e p e t it iv e and r o u tin e than
that o f w o r k e r s w h o d o m a c h in e o p e r a ­
tor w ork .
M a n y p o w e r tr u c k o p e r a t o r s a r e
m e m b e r s o f la b o r u n io n s . M o s t l a b o r m a n a g e m e n t c o n t r a c t s p r o v id e f o r fr in g e
b e n e fits s u ch a s p aid h o lid a y s and v a c a ­
tio n s , h ea lth in s u r a n c e , life in s u r a n c e ,
and r e t ir e m e n t p e n s io n s .

19

PRODUCTION PAINTERS
Nature of Work
A lm o s t e v e r y m e ta l o r w o o d p r o d u c t
m a n u fa c tu r e d b y A m e r i c a n in d u s tr y is
g iv e n a co a tin g o f pain t o r o th e r p r o ­
t e c t iv e m a t e r ia l. A lth o u g h s o m e o f th is
p ain t is a p p lie d b y a u to m a tic m e th o d s ,
m u c h o f the p ain tin g in m a s s - p r o d u c t io n
in d u s t r ie s is d on e b y w o r k e r s k n ow n as
p r o d u c tio n p a in t e r s . T h e s e w o r k e r s u se
s p r a y guns to a p p ly p ain t, l a c q u e r , v a r ­
n is h , o r o th e r fin is h e s to p a r ts o r f in ­
is h e d m a n u fa c tu r e d p r o d u c t s .
O th er
p r o d u c tio n p a in te r s u se b r u s h e s to a p p ly
p a in t.
(T h e w o r k d on e b y p r o d u c tio n
p a in te r s in f a c t o r i e s is d iffe r e n t f r o m
that p e r f o r m e d b y s k ille d p a in te r s w ho
a re e m p lo y e d in c o n s t r u c t io n and m a in ­
te n a n c e w o r k . )
P a in t e r s w h o o p e r a te s p r a y guns
p o u r m ix e d p a in ts in to a s p r a y gun c o n ­
ta in e r w h ic h i s a t t a c h e d to an a i r -

c o m p r e s s o r u n it.
T h e y m a k e a d ju s t­
m e n ts to the n o z z le o f the s p r a y gun and
the a i r - c o m p r e s s o r s o that the paint
w i ll b e a p p lie d u n ifo r m ly to the s u r f a c e .
T h e o b je c t s b e in g s p r a y e d m a y be s ta ­
t io n a r y o r a tta c h e d to a m o v in g c o n v e y o r .
W hen w o r k in g on o b je c t s r e q u ir in g m o r e
than one c o l o r , p r o d u c tio n p a in te r s m a y
a p p ly m a s k in g tape to p r e v e n t o v e r ­
la p p in g o f c o l o r s .
A lth o u g h the d u tie s of m o s t p r o ­
d u c tio n p a in te r s a r e quite s im p le and
r e p e t it iv e , the jo b s o f s o m e m a y be
r a th e r v a r ie d . T h e s e p r o d u c t io n p a in te r s
m a y m a k e d e c i s i o n s in v o lv in g the a p p li­
c a tio n o f f in i s h e s , th inn in g o f p a in t, and
the a d ju s tm e n t o f pain t s p r a y e q u ip m e n t.
P r o d u c t io n p a in te r s a ls o m a y c le a n the
s u r fa c e to b e p a in te d b e f o r e p a in tin g.
F o r s o m e a s s ig n m e n t s , w h ich r e q u ir e
p r o d u c tio n p a in te r s to m ix p ain ts and
fig u r e the s iz e o f the a r e a to be p a in ted ,
th ey u s e s im p le a r it h m e t ic in v o lv in g
d e c i m a l s and f r a c t i o n s .
P r o d u c t io n
p a in te r s m a y r e p la c e n o z z l e s and c le a n
guns and o th e r pain t e q u ip m e n t w h en
n ecessary.
In a d d itio n to s p r a y tanks
and s p r a y g u n s, p r o d u c tio n p a in te r s u se
t o o ls su ch a s m ix in g p a d d le s , p l i e r s ,
r u l e s , and liq u id m ix in g d e v ic e s .

Where Employed
M o r e than 90, 000 p r o d u c tio n p a in te r s
w e r e e m p lo y e d in m a n u fa ctu rin g in d u s ­
t r i e s in 1959; a bou t 15 p e r c e n t w e r e
w o m e n . A b o u t 4 0 , 000 p r o d u c tio n p a in t­
e r s w e r e e m p lo y e d in p la n ts m a n u fa c ­
tu rin g fu r n itu r e and tr a n s p o r t a t io n e q u ip ­
m e n t (p r im a r ily a u t o m o b ile s and a i r ­
c r a f t ) . O th e r s w o r k e d in p la n ts w h ich
p r o d u c e e l e c t r i c a l and e l e c t r o n i c m a ­
c h in e r y , m a c h i n e r y o th e r than e l e c ­
t r i c a l , and fa b r ic a t e d m e t a l p r o d u c t s .
P r o d u c t io n p a in te r jo b s a r e fo u n d m a in ly
in N ew Y o r k , M ic h ig a n , O h io , I l li n o is ,
C a lifo r n ia , and P e n n s y lv a n ia .

Training, Other Qualifications,
and Advancement
Production

p a i n t e r a t wo r k on a u t o m o b i l e

tender

20




painting

line

M o s t p r o d u c tio n p a in te r s le a r n th e ir
jo b s th ro u g h o n - t h e - jo b tr a in in g .
The

le n g th o f tr a in in g m a y v a r y f r o m 2 w e e k s
to s e v e r a l m o n th s .
T he new w o r k e r m a y h ave h is jo b
dutie s e x p la in e d to h im b y h is s u p e r v is o r
and th en be p la c e d u n d er the s u p e r v is io n
o f an e x p e r ie n c e d e m p lo y e e . The tr a in e e
m a y o b s e r v e the e x p e r ie n c e d e m p lo y e e
at w o r k o r a s s is t h im in h is w o r k .
P e r s o n s g oin g in to th is w o r k sh ou ld
be in g o o d h ea lth , be a b le to stand f o r
lo n g p e r io d s o f t im e , h ave a ste a d y han d,
and h a v e g o o d e y e s ig h t so that th ey ca n
d is tin g u is h b e tw e e n c o l o r s and s e e w h eth ­
e r the pain t is a p p lie d e v e n ly .
T h e r e a r e lim it e d a d v a n c e m e n t
p o s s i b i li t ie s in th is f ie l d o f w o r k .
A
s m a ll n u m b er o f w o r k e r s h ave b e e n a b le
to a d v a n ce to jo b s a s s k ille d i n s p e c t o r s
or fo re m e n .

Employment Outlook
T h e r e w ill be th ou sa n d s o f jo b o p p o r ­
tu n itie s f o r n ew w o r k e r s a s p r o d u c tio n
p a i n t e r s d u r i n g the 1 9 6 0 's .
M ost
o p e n in g s w ill a r is e f r o m the n eed to
r e p la c e w o r k e r s w h o le a v e th e ir j o b s ,
t r a n s fe r out o f th is f ie ld o f w o r k , r e t i r e ,
or d ie .
A lth ou g h m a n y in d u s tr ie s w h ich e m ­
p lo y th e s e w o r k e r s a r e e x p e c t e d to in ­
c r e a s e th e ir e m p lo y m e n t in the 1 9 6 0 -7 0
d e c a d e , th e re p r o b a b ly w i ll be o n ly a
s lig h t i n c r e a s e in the e m p lo y m e n t o f
p r o d u c tio n p a i n t e r s .
The in c r e a s in g
d e v e lo p m e n t and u se o f m e c h a n iz e d and

a u to m a tic p ain tin g e q u ip m e n t p r o b a b ly
w ill s lo w up the e m p lo y m e n t i n c r e a s e
o f th e s e w o r k e r s .

Earnings and Working Conditions
P r o d u c t io n p a in te r s g e n e r a lly a r e
p a id on an h o u r ly b a s is .
A c c o r d in g to
a 1959 w a g e s u r v e y o f the w o o d h o u s e ­
h o ld f u r n i t u r e in d u s tr y b y the U. S.
D e p a r tm e n t o f L a b o r 's B u re a u o f L a b o r
S t a t is t ic s , m a le p r o d u c tio n p a in te r s had
a v e r a g e s t r a ig h t -t im e h o u r ly e a r n in g s
o f $ 1 .5 7 .
A n e x a m in a tio n o f s e v e r a l
1 9 5 9 -6 0 la b o r -m a n a g e m e n t c o n t r a c t s in
the m e ta lw o r k in g in d u s tr ie s in d ic a t e s
that th e s e w o r k e r s e a r n e d f r o m abou t
$2 to $ 2 . 70 an h o u r.
P r o d u c t io n p a in te r s a r e e x p o s e d to
fu m e s f r o m pain t and p a i n t - m i x i n g
in g r e d ie n t s .
S om e p a in te r s w e a r p r o ­
te c t iv e g o g g le s and m a s k s w h ich c o v e r
th e ir n o s e and m o u th .
W hen w o r k in g
on la r g e o b je c t s , th ey m a y w o r k in
a w k w a rd and c r a m p e d p o s it io n s .
M a n y p r o d u c tio n p a in te r s a re m e m ­
b e r s o f u n io n s . A m o n g the la b o r o r g a n ­
iz a t io n s to w h ich th e y b e lo n g a r e the
In te r n a tio n a l U n ion , U n ited A u t o m o b ile ,
A i r c r a f t and A g r ic u lt u r a l I m p l e m e n t
W o r k e r s o f A m e r i c a ; the U n ited F u r ­
n itu re W o r k e r s o f A m e r i c a ; and the
U n ited S t e e lw o r k e r s o f A m e r i c a . M an y
la b o r -m a n a g e m e n t c o n t r a c t s in the plant^s
in w h ic h th e s e w o r k e r s a re e m p lo y e d
p r o v id e f o r fr in g e b e n e fits s u ch a s h o l ­
id a y and v a c a tio n p ay, h ea lth in s u r a n c e ,
life in s u r a n c e , and r e t ir e m e n t p e n s io n s .

SEWING MACHINE OPERATORS
Nature of Work
Sew in g m a ch in e o p e r a t o r s u s e p o w e r d r iv e n sew in g m a c h in e s w h ich a r e u s e d
to s titch m a t e r ia ls to g e t h e r . T h e s e m a ­
c h in e s a r e u s u a lly h e a v ie r and c a p a b le
o f f a s t e r s p e e d s than th o s e fou n d in the
h o m e . S ew in g m a c h in e o p e r a t o r s w o r k
on d r e s s e s , s u its , s h ir t s , and o th e r




ty p e s o f a p p a r e l; u p h o ls te r y ; and o th e r
p rod u cts.
In b e g in n in g the se w in g o p e r a tio n ,
the o p e r a t o r u s u a lly f i r s t th r e a d s the
m a c h in e and then p o s it io n s the w o r k f o r
s e w in g .
The m a c h i n e is s ta r te d by
p r e s s in g the k n ee l e v e r o r fo o t t r e a d le .
The o p e r a t o r th en w o r k s the l e v e r o r

21

e x a m p l e , th ey m a y be id e n tifie d a c ­
c o r d in g to the typ e o f m a ch in e th ey
u s e - - s i n g l e n e e d le , d o u b le n e e d le , o r
m u ltip le n e e d l e o p e r a t o r .
They m ay
a ls o be c l a s s i f i e d a c c o r d in g to the p a rt
o f the p r o d u c t th ey s p e c ia li z e in p r o ­
d u c in g , f o r e x a m p l e , s h ir t h e m m e r ,
c o l l a r s t it c h e r , o r a r m h o le b a s t e r .
S ew ing m a c h in e o p e r a t o r s a r e r e ­
q u ir e d to c le a n , o il, and m a k e s im p le
a d ju s tm e n ts to th e ir m a c h in e s . S o m e ­
t im e s o p e r a t o r s m u s t su p p ly th e ir ow n
s m a ll t o o ls and a tta c h m e n ts s u ch a s
s c i s s o r s and f o l d e r s .

Where Employed

Sew ing m achine operators at work

tr e a d le to c o n t r o l the m a ch in e w h ile
gu idin g the m a t e r ia l b e in g sew n . U pon
c o m p le t io n o f the s titch in g p r o c e s s , the
w o r k p ie c e is r e m o v e d and, if n e c e s s a r y ,
e x c e s s m a t e r ia l is t r im m e d .
T he tw o m a jo r m e th o d s o f sew in g
m a c h in e o p e r a tio n a re the s e c t io n s y s te m
and the sin g leh a n d ( t a ilo r ) s y s t e m . In
the s e c t io n s y s te m , the o p e r a t o r s p e ­
c i a l i z e s in a s in g le p r o d u c tio n o p e r a tio n .
F o r e x a m p le , an o p e r a t o r e m p lo y e d in
the a p p a r e l in d u s try m a y s p e c ia li z e in
a tta ch in g c o l l a r s o r c u f f s , o r jo in in g the
fr o n t and b a c k o f a g a r m e n t.
In the
sin g le h a n d s y s t e m , the o p e r a t o r p e r ­
f o r m s a ll the sta n d a rd sew in g m a ch in e
o p e r a t io n s in v o lv e d in the m a n u fa ctu re
o f a c o m p le t e g a r m e n t.
The o p e ra to r
in the sin g leh a n d s y s t e m u s u a lly w o r k s
on b e t t e r g r a d e a p p a r e l.

The g r e a t m a jo r i t y o f w o r k e r s in
th is la r g e o c c u p a tio n a r e ^ m p lo y e d in
the a p p a r e l in d u s tr y . The f a c t o r i e s
w h i c h m a n u fa ctu re m e n 's , w o m e n 's ,
and c h ild r e n ' s clo th in g a r e by f a r the
l a r g e s t e m p lo y e r s o f th e s e w o r k e r s .
T h e y a r e e m p lo y e d in o th e r m a n u fa c ­
tu rin g p la n ts su ch a s th o s e w h ich p r o ­
d u ce c u r t a i n s and o th e r h o u s e f u r ­
n is h in g s , and le a th e r and p la s t ic p r o ­
d u c ts .
Sew in g m a ch in e o p e r a t o r s a ls o
w o r k in f a c t o r i e s w h ich p r o d u c e u p ­
h o ls t e r e d fu r n it u r e , a u t o m o b ile s , a n d
a ir c r a f t .
A la r g e n u m b e r o f se w in g m a c h in e
o p e r a t o r jQ bs a re c o n c e n t r a t e d in N ew
Y o r k C ity , the N a tio n ' s g a r m e n t c e n t e r .
M an y sew in g m a ch in e o p e r a t o r jo b s a r e
fou n d in o th e r la r g e u rb a n c e n t e r s su ch
a s P h i l a d e l p h i a , L o s A n g e le s , and
C h ic a g o .
J o b s a ls o m a y be fo u n d in
s m a ll tow n s in m a n y s e c t io n s o f the
co u n tr y .

Training, Other Qualifications,
and Advancement

M a n y d e v ic e s o r a tta c h m e n ts su ch
a s b u tto n -h o ld in g c la m p s , s e a m - f o ld in g
a tta c h m e n ts , o r s tit c h -g u id in g d e v ic e s
a r e u s e d by o p e r a t o r s on v a r io u s m a ­
c h in e s to p e r f o r m c e r t a in sew in g o p ­
e r a t io n s .

E n try in to b e g in n in g m a c h in e -s e w in g
jo b s i s r e la t iv e ly e a s y ; th e r e a r e fe w
r e s t r i c t i o n s r e g a r d in g p h y s ic a l c o n d it io n
o r a g e . U s u a lly , s o m e p r e v io u s tr a in in g
in se w in g o p e r a t io n s is p r e f e r r e d , a l ­
th ou gh m a n y c o n c e r n s w ill h ir e w o r k e r s
w ith no s u ch e x p e r i e n c e .

S ew ing m a c h in e o p e r a t o r s a r e c l a s ­
s if ie d in s e v e r a l d iffe r e n t w a y s .
F or

Sew in g m a c h in e o p e r a t o r s u s u a lly
l e a r n th e ir jo b s t h r o u g h o n - t h e - jo b

22




tr a in in g , w h ich is u s u a lly in fo r m a l and
g iv e n u n d er the s u p e r v is io n o f a f o r e m a n
or cow ork er.
Th e len g th o f tim e r e ­
q u ir e d to a c h ie v e a s a t is fa c t o r y le v e l and
q u a lity o f p r o d u c tio n d e p e n d s , to a g r e a t
e x ten t, on in d iv id u a l a b ility .
W ork ers
p e r f o r m i n g the s im p le r o p e r a tio n s
u s u a lly ca n r e a c h a h igh p r o d u c t io n ra te
w ith in a fe w m o n th s .

e r u se o f in f o r m a l l e is u r e c lo th in g a r e
a m o n g the f a c t o r s e x p e c t e d to r e s u lt in
an in c r e a s e d d em a n d f o r the p r o d u c ts
o f the f a c t o r i e s e m p lo y in g se w in g m a ­
ch in e o p e r a t o r s .
S om e o f the o th e r
m a n u fa ctu rin g in d u s t r ie s w h ich e m p lo y
th e s e w o r k e r s a r e a ls o e x p e c t e d to in ­
c r e a s e th e ir e m p lo y m e n t d u rin g th is p e ­
r io d .

S om e o p e r a t o r s le a r n to o p e r a te
se w in g m a c h in e s b y a tten din g v o c a t io n a l
o r tr a d e s c h o o l s .
H ow ever, w ork ers
w h o h ave a tten d ed su ch s c h o o ls f r e ­
q u en tly n eed fu r th e r o n - t h e - jo b e x p e ­
r ie n c e b e fo r e th ey ca n p e r f o r m e f f i ­
c ie n t ly on the jo b .

E m p lo y m e n t o p p o r tu n itie s f o r se w in g
m a ch in e o p e r a t o r s w ill d if fe r a m o n g the
v a r io u s b r a n c h e s o f the a p p a r e l in d u s tr y .
M o r e o p p o r tu n itie s a r e e x p e c t e d to d e ­
v e lo p in the p la n ts w h ich p r o d u c e m e n 1 s
and b o y s ' s p o r t s s h ir ts and w o r k c lo th in g
and w o m e n 's d r e s s e s , s k ir t s , b lo u s e s ,
and p la y su its than in the p la n ts m a n u ­
fa c tu r in g m e n ' s t a ilo r e d su its and c o a t s .

Sew in g jo b s r e q u ir e the a b ility to d o
p a in sta k in g , ro u tin e w o r k r a p id ly .
G ood
e y e s i g h t , fin g e r s k ill, e y e - h a n d - f o o t
c o o r d in a t io n , and the a b ility to w o r k at
a stea d y and fa s t p a c e a re e s s e n t ia l.
Sew in g m a ch in e o p e r a t o r jo b s a r e not
p h y s ic a lly h a r d .
A la r g e m a jo r i t y o f
o p e r a t o r s a re w o m e n .
M o s t se w in g m a c h in e o p e r a t o r s stay
on the sa m e o p e r a tio n th rou g h ou t th e ir
w o r k in g c a r e e r s .
S om e d o not lik e to
ch a n g e th e ir sew in g s p e c ia lt y s in c e th is
o fte n c a u s e s a l o s s o f e a r n in g s d u rin g
the r e t r a in in g p e r io d .
In s o m e c a s e s ,
o p e r a t o r s a re a b le to m o v e to b e tte r
p a yin g sew in g m a c h in e jo b s in the s a m e
o r o th e r in d u s tr ie s; a fe w o p e r a t o r s h ave
a d v a n ce d to jo b s su ch a s fo r e m e n , s a m ­
p le m a k e r s , and d e s i g n e r s , w h ile o th e r s
w h o h a v e had a d d itio n a l tr a in in g have
b e c o m e p r o d u c tio n m a n a g e r s .

Employment Outlook
T h o u s a n d s o f you n g w o m e n and m e n
w ill b e a b le to fin d jo b s a s sew in g m a ­
ch in e o p e r a t o r s d u rin g the I9 6 0 ' s.
A
la r g e p r o p o r t io n o f jo b o p e n in g s w ill
r e s u lt f r o m the n eed to r e p la c e w o r k e r s
w h o le a v e th e ir jo b s , t r a n s fe r to o th e r
f ie l d s o f w o r k , r e t i r e , o r d ie .
A m o d e r a t e i n c r e a s e in the e m p lo y ­
m e n t o f sew in g m a ch in e o p e r a t o r s is
e x p e c t e d d u rin g the 1 9 6 0 -7 0 d e c a d e as
a r e s u lt o f the g r o w th o f e m p lo y m e n t
in the a p p a r e l i n d u s t r y .
I n c r e a s in g
p o p u la tio n , r is in g in c o m e , and the g r e a t ­




S in ce m o s t se w in g m a ch in e o p e r a ­
t o r s a re w o m e n , m a n y o p p o r tu n itie s f o r
e m p lo y m e n t sh o u ld a r i s e b e c a u s e w o m e n
o fte n le a v e the la b o r f o r c e to g e t m a r ­
r ie d , r a i s e f a m i li e s , o r m o v e to oth e r
a r e a s w hen th e ir h u sb an d s ch a n ge th e ir
jo b s .
A f a v o r a b le f a c t about th is o c ­
cu p a tio n is that e x p e r ie n c e d se w in g m a ­
ch in e o p e r a t o r s w h o le a v e th e ir jo b s a re
a b le , w ith little d iffic u lt y , to fin d o p ­
e r a t o r jo b s a ga in w h en th ey w is h to r e ­
e n te r the la b o r f o r c e .
Sew ing m a c h in e o p e r a t o r s e m p lo y e d
in the a p p a r e l in d u s tr y m a y b e s u b je c t
to s e a s o n a l la y o ffs and e x te n d e d p e r io d s
o f u n e m p lo y m e n t. T h e s e s e a s o n a l l a y ­
o ffs a r e m o r e fr e q u e n t in p la n ts p r o ­
d u cin g w o m e n 's c o a t s and su its than in
f a c t o r i e s m a k in g m e n ' s s h ir t s .
H ow ­
e v e r , a tte m p ts h ave b e e n m a d e , l a r g e ly
in u n io n iz e d p la n ts, to d iv id e the a v a il­
a b le w o r k d u rin g s la c k p e r io d s .

Earnings and Working Conditions
E a r n in g s o f se w in g m a c h in e o p e r a ­
t o r s v a r y w id e ly , d ep en d in g on the jo b
th ey a r e p e r f o r m in g , the in d u s tr y and the
s iz e and lo c a t io n o f the plan t in w h ich
th ey a r e e m p lo y e d , the m e th o d o f w a ge
p a y m e n t (p ie c e r a t e s o r h o u r ly r a t e s ) ,
and the s k ill o f the in d iv id u a l w o r k e r .
S ew in g m a c h in e o p e r a t o r s in the a p p a r e l
in d u s try a r e g e n e r a lly p aid on a p i e c e ­
w o r k b a s is w ith a m in im u m g u a ra n te e d
h o u r ly r a te .

23

T he U. S. D e p a r t m e n t o f L a b o r ' s
B u re a u o f L a b o r S ta tis tic s 1958 w a g e
stu dy in the m e n 's and b o y s ' su its and
c o a t s in d u s tr y s h o w s the f o l l o w i n g
a v e r a g e s t r a ig h t -t im e h o u r ly e a r n in g s
f o r sew in g m a c h in e o p e r a t o r s (c o a t
f a b r i c a t io n ) in nine la r g e m e t r o p o lit a n
a rea s:

C itY

M en

B a l t i m o r e ...............
B o s t o n ......................
C h i c a g o ....................
C in c in n a t i ...............
L o s A n g e le s L on g B e a c h . . .
N ew Y o r k .............
P h i la d e l p h i a ..........
R o c h e s t e r , N. Y .
St. L o u i s ...............

$1.
2.
2.
1.

99
22
08
91

2.
2.
2.
2.

23
51
30
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—

W om en
$ 1 . 78
1 .7 9
1. 79
1. 62
1.
1.
1.
1.
1.

92
90
83
82
69

The sh op a r e a s in w h ich s e w in g m a ­
ch in e o p e r a t o r s w o r k a r e g e n e r a lly w e ll
lig h te d and v e n tila te d . H o w e v e r , th e re
is c o n s id e r a b le n o is e f r o m the m a c h in e s .
O p e r a t o r s w h o w o r k on a p i e c e - r a t e
b a s is a re s o m e t im e s u n d er a s tr a in in
tr y in g to w o r k at a r a p id p a c e in o r d e r
to i n c r e a s e th e ir e a r n in g s .
M a n y s e w in g m a ch in e o p e r a t o r s a re
m e m b e r s o f la b o r u n io n s .
A m o n g the
o r g a n iz a t io n s to w h ich th e s e w o r k e r s
b e l o n g a r e t h e In te r n a tio n a l L a d ie s '
G a r m e n t W o r k e r s ' U n ion , the A m a l ­
g a m a te d C lo th in g W o r k e r s o f A m e r i c a ;
and the U n ited G a r m e n t W o r k e r s o f
A m e r i c a . M o s t la b o r -m a n a g e m e n t c o n ­
t r a c t s in the p la n ts in w h ich th e s e w o r k ­
e r s a r e e m p lo y e d p r o v id e f o r fr in g e
b e n e fits s u ch a s p a id h o l i d a y s , p aid
v a c a t io n s , h e a lth in s u r a n c e , and r e t i r e ­
m e n t b e n e fit s .

STATIONARY FIREMEN (BOILER)
Nature of Work
S ta tio n a ry f ir e m e n o p e r a te and m a in ­
ta in one o r m o r e s te a m b o i l e r s u s e d
to p r o v id e p o w e r f o r in d u s t r ia l m a c h in ­
e r y o r f o r h e a tin g .
In m o s t p la n ts,
th e s e w o r k e r s o p e r a te m e c h a n ic a l d e ­
v i c e s w h ich c o n t r o l the f lo w o f a ir , g a s ,
o i l, o r p o w d e r e d c o a l in to the f i r e b o x
to k e e p p r o p e r s te a m p r e s s u r e in the
b o i l e r s . T h ey k e e p w a te r in the b o i l e r s
at r e q u ir e d l e v e ls and m o v e v a lv e s and
o th e r d e v ic e s su ch a s l e v e r s and s w it c h e s
to c o n t r o l and r e g u la te b o il e r o p e r a tio n .
T h ey a ls o m a y add c h e m i c a l s to b o il e r
w a te r to p r e v e n t b o il e r c o r r o s i o n . Sta­
t io n a r y f i r e m e n r e g u la r ly in s p e c t b o il e r
e q u ip m e n t, r e a d in g m e t e r s and o th e r
i n s t r u m e n t s , to m a k e s u r e that the
b o i l e r s a r e o p e r a tin g e f fi c i e n t ly and in
a c c o r d a n c e w ith s a fe ty r e g u la t io n s .
A lth ou g h s o m e f ir e m e n in m a n u fa c ­
tu rin g p la n ts o p e r a te l o w - p r e s s u r e b o i l ­
e r s , m o s t f i r e m e n o p e r a te the m o r e
p o w e r fu l h ig h - p r e s s u r e e q u ip m e n t.
In
m a n y p la n ts u sin g h ig h - p r e s s u r e b o i l e r s ,
s e m is k ille d s ta tio n a r y f ir e m e n a r e s u -

24




Stationary

fireman

lig h tin g

a

boiler

p e r v i s e d b y s k ille d w o r k e r s c a lle d s ta ­
tio n a r y e n g in e e r s . (T h e s e s k ille d w o r k ­
e r s a re r e s p o n s ib le f o r the o p e r a tio n
and m a in te n a n c e o f a v a r ie t y o f e q u ip ­
m e n t in c lu d in g b o i l e r s , d i e s e l and s te a m
e n g i n e s , and r e f r ig e r a t io n and a i r co n d itio n in g e q u ip m e n t. )
S ta tio n a ry f ir e m e n k e e p e q u ip m e n t
in g o o d w o r k i n g o r d e r by c l e a n i n g ,

o ilin g , and g r e a s in g m o v in g m a c h in e r y
p a r t s . T h e y m a y m a k e m in o r r e p a ir s ,
u s in g s m a ll h a n d to o ls su ch a s w r e n c h e s
and h a m m e r s , and m a y k e e p s im p le
r e c o r d s s u ch a s th o s e w h ich sh ow the
a m ou n t o f fu e l u s e d and b o il e r t e m p e r ­
a tu res.

Where Employed
A b o u t 70, 000 s ta t io n a r y f i r e m e n w e r e
e m p lo y e d in a w id e v a r ie t y o f m a n u fa c ­
tu rin g in d u s t r ie s in 1959.
G e n e r a lly ,
th e s e w o r k e r s a r e e m p lo y e d in in d u s ­
t r i e s w h ich a r e la r g e u s e r s o f p o w e r
g e n e r a tin g e q u ip m e n t.
L e a d in g in d u s ­
t r i e s in the e m p lo y m e n t o f s ta tio n a r y
f ir e m e n a r e l u m b e r ; ir o n and s te e l;
t e x t ile s ; s to n e , c la y , and g la s s ; f o o d s ;
and c h e m i c a l s .
B e c a u s e s ta tio n a r y f i r e m e n w o r k in
s o m a n y d iffe r e n t in d u s t r ie s , th e y a r e
e m p lo y e d in a ll p a r ts o f the c o u n tr y .
A lth o u g h s o m e a r e e m p lo y e d in s m a ll
to w n s and e v e n r u r a l a r e a s , m o s t w o r k
in the m o r e h e a v ily p o p u la te d a r e a s
w h e r e la r g e m a n u fa ctu rin g p la n ts a re
lo c a t e d . N ew Y o r k , P e n n s y lv a n ia , O h io,
I l li n o is , M ic h ig a n , and N ew J e r s e y a re
S ta tes w h ich h a v e la r g e n u m b e r s o f
f ir e m e n jo b s .

p re s s u r e b o ile r s .
Low p re s su re f ir e ­
m e n o p e r a te lo w p r e s s u r e b o i l e r s g e n ­
e r a l ly u s e d f o r h e a tin g . H igh p r e s s u r e
f ir e m e n o p e r a te the m o r e p o w e r fu l h igh
p r e s s u r e b o i l e r s and a u x ilia r y b o il e r
e q u ip m e n t u s e d to p o w e r m a c h in e r y and
e q u ip m e n t in a d d itio n to h e a tin g b u ild ­
in g s . H o w e v e r , b oth h ig h and lo w p r e s ­
s u r e o p e r a t o r s m a y o p e r a te e q u ip m e n t
o f any p r e s s u r e c l a s s , p r o v i d e d a
s ta tio n a r y e n g in e e r i s on duty.
S ta tio n a ry f ir e m e n m u s t u n d e r sta n d
the o p e r a t io n o f m a c h in e r y and h ave
n o r m a l v i s io n and g o o d h e a r in g .
(B e ­
c a u s e o f the m e c h a n iz a t io n o f e q u ip ­
m e n t, p h y s ic a l s tre n g th is no lo n g e r a
m a jo r r e q u i r e m e n t f o r th is typ e o f
w ork. )
S ta tio n a ry f i r e m e n m a y a d v a n ce to
jo b s a s s ta tio n a r y e n g in e e r s . In o r d e r
to b e c o m e s ta tio n a r y e n g in e e r s, f ir e m e n
s o m e t im e s s u p p le m e n t th e ir o n - t h e - jo b
tr a in in g b y takin g c o u r s e s in s u b je c t s
s u ch a s p r a c t i c a l c h e m is t r y , e le m e n t a r y
p h y s ic s , b l u e p r i n t r e a d in g , a p p lie d
e l e c t r i c i t y , and t h e o r y o f r e f r ig e r a t io n ,
a ir -c o n d it io n in g , v e n tila tio n , and h e a t­
in g .
S ta tio n a ry f ir e m e n m a y a ls o a d ­
v a n c e to jo b s a s m a in te n a n c e m e c h a n ic s .

Employment Outlook
Training, Other Qualifications,
and Advancement
M o s t la r g e and m e d iu m - s iz e c i t i e s ,
and a fe w S ta te s , r e q u ir e that the a p p li­
ca n t f o r a s ta tio n a r y f ir e m a n jo b h ave
a l ic e n s e w h ich p e r m it s h im to d o th is
w o r k . A p p lic a n ts ca n ob ta in the k n o w l­
e d g e and e x p e r ie n c e to p a s s the l ic e n s e
e x a m in a tio n b y f i r s t w o r k in g a s a h e lp e r
in a b o i l e r r o o m , o r w o r k i n g a s a
s ta tio n a r y fir e m a n u n d er a c o n d it io n a l
lic e n s e .

D u rin g the I960* s, a s lig h t i n c r e a s e
in the n u m b e r o f s e m is k ille d s ta tio n a r y
f i r e m e n in m a n u fa ctu rin g in d u s t r ie s is
ex p ected .
M o s t o p p o r tu n itie s f o r new
w o r k e r s w ill r e s u lt f r o m r e p la c e m e n t
n eeds.

L i c e n s e r e q u ir e m e n t s d if fe r f r o m
c it y to c it y and f r o m S t a t e to State.
H o w e v e r , the a p p lic a n t u s u a lly m u s t
p r o v e that he m e e t s the e x p e r ie n c e and
o th e r r e q u ir e m e n t s f o r the l ic e n s e and
p a s s an e x a m in a tio n te s tin g h is k n o w l­
e d g e o f the jo b .

Th e e x p e c t e d i n c r e a s e in the u se
o f s ta tio n a r y b o il e r s and a u x ilia r y e q u ip ­
m e n t - - u s e d to g e n e r a te p o w e r o r h e a t
plan t s t r u c t u r e s - - i n the Nation* s m a n u ­
fa c tu r in g in d u s t r ie s is the m a in r e a s o n
w h y s o m e i n c r e a s e in e m p lo y m e n t is
e x p e c t e d in th is o c c u p a tio n .
H ow ever,
im p r o v e d o p e r a tin g e f f i c i e n c y r e s u ltin g
f r o m u se o f a u to m a tic , m o r e p o w e r fu l,
and m o r e c e n t r a liz e d e q u ip m e n t, and
b e tte r u s e o f m a n p o w e r w ill lim it the
g ro w th in the e m p lo y m e n t o f s ta tio n a r y
f ir e m e n .

T h e r e a re tw o ty p e s o f s ta tio n a r y
f i r e m e n l i c e n s e s - - f o r l o w and h i g h

R e t ir e m e n t s and d e a th s o f e x p e r i ­
e n c e d s ta tio n a r y f ir e m e n w ill a ls o r e -




25

su it in jo b o p e n in g s f o r new w o r k e r s .
In a d d i t i o n , a la r g e n u m b e r o f jo b
o p e n in g s w ill b e c r e a t e d b y e x p e r ie n c e d
w o r k e r s w h o le a v e th e ir jo b s o r t r a n s ­
f e r to o th e r f ie l d s o f w o r k .

Earnings and Working Conditions
The type o f e q u ip m e n t o p e r a te d and
the in d u s tr y in w h ich th ey a r e e m p lo y e d
a r e a m o n g the f a c t o r s a f f e c t i n g the
e a r n in g s o f s ta tio n a r y f ir e m e n .
A c­
c o r d in g to w a g e s u r v e y s m a d e b y the
U. S. D e p a r tm e n t o f L a b o r 's B u re a u of
L a b o r S ta tis tic s in 1 9 5 9 -6 0 , the a v e r a g e
s t r a ig h t -t im e h o u r ly e a r n in g s o f s ta ­
t io n a r y f ir e m e n in m a n u fa ctu rin g p lan ts
in 51 c i t i e s and a r e a s ra n g e d f r o m $ 1. 26
in G r e e n v i l l e , O h io, to $ 2 .8 3 in the
B e a u m o n t - P o r t A r th u r , T e x a s , a r e a .
A lth ou g h m a n y b o il e r r o o m s w h e r e
s ta tio n a r y f ir e m e n w o r k a r e c le a n and
w e ll l i g h t e d , th e s e c o n d it io n s do not
a lw a y s e x is t . M o s t s ta tio n a r y f ir e m e n ,
e v e n u n d er the m o s t f a v o r a b l e c o n d it io n s ,
a r e at t im e s e x p o s e d to n o is e , h ig h t e m ­
p e r a t u r e s , d ir t , d u st, c o n ta c t w ith o il

and g r e a s e , o d o r s , and fu m e s f r o m
o i l, g a s , c o a l , o r s m o k e . In r e p a ir o r
m a in te n a n c e w o r k , th e s e w o r k e r s m a y
h ave to c r a w l in s id e a b o il e r and w o r k
in a c r o u c h in g o r k n e e lin g p o s it io n .
S ta tio n a ry f i r e m e n a r e s u b je c t to
b u r n s and f a l l s , and in ju r y f r o m m o v in g
m a c h in e r y . B o i l e r s and a u x ilia r y e q u ip ­
m e n t w h ich a re not o p e r a te d c o r r e c t l y ,
o r a re d e fe c t iv e , m a y b e d a n g e r o u s to
th e s e w o r k e r s and to o th e r p e r s o n s in
the w o r k v ic in it y .
H ow ever, m od ern
e q u ip m e n t and s a fe ty p r o c e d u r e s have
r e d u c e d a c c id e n t s c o n s id e r a b ly in r e c e n t
years.
M an y s ta tio n a r y f ir e m e n a r e e m ­
p lo y e d in p l a n t s w h ich h a v e l a b o r m a n a g e m e n t c o n t r a c t s , m o s t o f w h ich
p r o v id e b e n e fits w h ich m a y in c lu d e paid
h o lid a y s and v a c a t io n s , h o s p it a liz a t io n ,
m e d ic a l and s u r g ic a l in s u r a n c e , s ic k n e s s
and a c c id e n t in s u r a n c e , and r e t ir e m e n t
p e n s io n s .
A m o n g the u n ion s to w h ich
th e s e w o r k e r s b e lo n g a r e the I n te r ­
n a tio n a l B r o t h e r h o o d o f F ir e m e n and
O i le r s and the In te r n a tio n a l U nion of
O p e ra tin g E n g in e e r s .

vV U .S . GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE: 1961

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