What does an Operator do?

Operators are skilled technicians who control light or heavy machinery in various fields and use their in-depth knowledge to perform tasks including producing goods or making repairs. Operators need attention to detail and to concentrate and be precise in their work. They utilize hand-eye coordination and turn to their technical and mechanical skills to operate machinery and equipment. They use and oversee equipment needed to produce items and could be hired to produce anything from high-tech gadgets to appliances.

Operators ensure their machines perform at optimal levels and follow a regular upkeep schedule, including oiling parts, refilling dispensers, or checking calibrations. They may also perform necessary repairs, including tightening bolts. Operators inspect pieces or products the machine produces and bring issues to management’s attention immediately. They abide by workplace and governmental guidelines to reduce the chance of injury to themselves and others. Operators need a high school diploma, and on-the-job training is typical.

EducationBachelor's Degree
Work/Life Balance
3.1 ★
Salary Range--
Career Opportunity
3.1 ★
Avg. Experience8+ years

Operator Salaries

Average Base Pay

$64,002 /yr
Same as national average
Not including cash compensation
See More Insights
Median: $64K
See More Insights
Glassdoor Estimated Salary

Operator Career Path

Learn how to become an Operator, what skills and education you need to succeed, and what level of pay to expect at each step on your career path.

Senior Operator
Operator IV
See Career Path

Operator Insights

Read what Operator professionals have to say about their job experiences and view top companies for this career.
Avantguard MonitoringAvantguard Monitoring
CS Team Operator
Jan. 10, 2021

“I've been lucky to have such an amazing and dependable company to work with.”

Allied UniversalAllied Universal
Security Operator
Nov. 30, 2021

“I use to work for G4S and Allied completed their merger/buyout this October the weekly pay is good”

Great Southern BankGreat Southern Bank
Oct. 11, 2019

“Overall a good place to work if you're resilient and what to grow your career.”

University of WyomingUniversity of Wyoming
Transit Operator
Apr. 11, 2021

“Starting pay is just under $15 an hour and good luck getting a raise.”

Game Operator
Dec. 13, 2021

“Salary was really good and they did pay for overtime as well without any issues.”

Run VT
Senior MCR Operator
Oct. 5, 2021

“Staff are trained in all aspects of production and post production offering multiple opportunities for career progression and client support.”

Oryx Energies
Depot Operator
Aug. 16, 2021

“Much career advancement opportunities and I think it gives people a feeling of been part of the production because everyone is involved”

Avantguard MonitoringAvantguard Monitoring
Jan. 7, 2021

“Avantguard is a great place to work if you are a college student or have a busy schedule.”

See More

Operator Interviews

Related Careers

Warehouse Manager
13% skills overlap
Machine Operator
25% skills overlap
Forklift Operator
25% skills overlap
Warehouse Worker
25% skills overlap

Operator jobs

Frequently asked questions about the role and responsibilities of an operator

When working as an operator, the most common skills you will need to perform your job and for career success are RADAR Systems, Guarding, Aircraft Systems, Attention To Detail and Computer Literate.

The most similar professions to operator are:
  • Warehouse Manager
  • Machine Operator
  • Forklift Operator
  • Warehouse Worker

The most common qualifications to become an operator is a minimum of a Bachelor's Degree and an average of 0 - 1 of experience not including years spent in education and/or training.