Precision Machining Career – It’s a Game Changer

Consider a career in precision machining! Precision machinists make the components that are critical to todays technologies. Skilled production workers are in high demand in our industry, 140,000 machinists are currently working according to the U.S. Department of Labor – Bureau of Labor Statistics.  The U.S. Department of Labor – Bureau of Labor Statistics’s latest figures project growth in jobs of 19% from 2010 to 2020 due to reshoring of jobs formerly run overseas and baby boomer retirements. Median Pay for CNC programmers is $22.07 per hour, that’s $7.00 more per hour than median for metal and plastic machine operators. Opportunities for advancement include supervisory, programming, set up, maintenance engineering and quality. Average Hours of first shift scheduled are usually above 40 per week in our industry.

What does it take to get the best opportunities in precision machining? Solid math skills. NAM/NIMS recognized certifications or Certificates from accredited schools for operations. Two Year associate degree in manufacturing. These can assure you he best prospects for a career in Precision machining. Use the links below to explore your future as a precision machinist. (you can hide the links I just wanted to be sure we knew where the info came from.


Manufacturing Changes Lives


Precision Machinists set up and operate a variety of computer controlled or mechanically controlled machine tools to produce precision machined parts and components.


$40,435 and $19.44 Hourly Wage


at your community college
for operator certificates and credentials.
Math skilled candidates can qualify for on the
job training at employers


Math Skills – Algebra, Geometry
Computer Skills – Prints are computer aided design files
 Ability to learn by doing. Hands on experience is the key to
developing your skills
 A commitment to quality. The machine tools you will operate cost anywhere from $150,000 to $1,500,000

What’s In It For You?


There are real jobs available in the precision machining industry. I read the classified advertising sections in the Sunday newspapers every week. There is always at least a quarter page of advertisements looking for qualified setup machinists and operators regardless of the metropolitan market I’m in.

Usually, there are also a number of other positions to be filled. These include positions for toolmakers, quality assurance and inspectors. The advertisements are there regardless of the state of the economy. Skilled machinist positions are always available in almost every market.



The precision machining industry provides challenging, satisfying, technical work. One day, the work might involve making critical parts for an automotive anti-lock brake. Another day, it might be airbag components or hydraulic fittings for military or aerospace applications.

There are a host of machined parts on a Harley-Davidson motorcycle, a Dodge Ram truck, a Caterpillar or John Deere tractor, even a Boeing 777. Precision parts can be found in vacuum cleaners, garbage disposals, plumbing system and faucets, stoves, furnaces, air conditioners, gas grills and garage door openers.

Some shops produce implants for medical and dental surgeries. In our industry, at the end of the day, you can see the tangible results of your skill and effort. People have safer, better lives because of your ability to produce the right parts.



Entry-level wages for toolmakers and setup machinists—during training—are on par with the wages a business major might earn after a 4- or 5-year bachelor’s degree program. But there are no tuition bills or loans to repay. Precision machining shops offer great benefits as well.



There are not a lot of fields where one can pursue a career and not have to worry about what the future will bring. Low-cost competition from China and India has not killed our industry. Rather, it has strengthened us as we continue to manufacture even higher precision and more safety-critical components and medical implants.

Today’s shops are being run with lean methods and environmentally sustainable practices to international quality standards. Sloppy, grimy, dirty—these words no longer describe manufacturing in America. CNC machines, just-in-time production methods, lean manufacturing techniques, along with great housekeeping and state-of-the-art facilities, give a truer picture of American manufacturing today.


The National Institute for Metalworking Skills

The National Institute for Metalworking Skills (NIMS) is a not-for- profit organization of associations, including PMPA, the Great Lakes Governors Association, and Organized Labor whose goal is to develop skill standards for the metalworking trades. A skill standard is a statement that describes what a person should be able to do and must know in order to perform a job successfully.

The Association for Career and Technical Education

The Association for Career and Technical Education is a professional organization of 38,000 teachers, counselors, school administrators, teacher educators and business/industry partners. Based in Alexandria, Virginia, ACTE carries out a diverse array of programs.

Tooling U

Tooling University offers a variety of tools to develop manufacturing skill sets of employees. Tooling U helps companies meet their training needs through comprehensive on-line training systems that measure results.