Salary Median (2020)


Projected Job Growth (2019-2029)

+4.2% (slower than the average)

Most Common Level of Education

High school diploma or equivalent


What Machinists Do

Set up and operate a variety of machine tools to produce precision parts and instruments out of metal. Includes precision instrument makers who fabricate, modify, or repair mechanical instruments. May also fabricate and modify parts to make or repair machine tools or maintain industrial machines, applying knowledge of mechanics, mathematics, metal properties, layout, and machining procedures.

Other Job Titles Machinists May Have

CNC Machinist (Computer Numeric Controlled Machinist), CNC Machinist (Computer Numerically Controlled Machinist), Gear Machinist, Machine Repair Person, Machinist, Maintenance Machinist, Manual Lathe Machinist, Production Machinist, Tool Room Machinist

How Leaders Describe a Typical Day at Work

CNC Machinist ,

Keats Manufacturing Co.

I come into work, power up my machine, and go over what my day is going to look like and what I want to get done that day. I'm given projects but I do most of the start-to-finish planning on my own. This includes determining which tools I need, what the time window looks like, and planning all steps involved. I then get to work on the project. I have to constantly look over everything and make sure I'm double checking the work to prevent mistakes.

Tasks & Responsibilities May Include

  • Calculate dimensions or tolerances, using instruments, such as micrometers or vernier calipers.
  • Machine parts to specifications, using machine tools, such as lathes, milling machines, shapers, or grinders.
  • Measure, examine, or test completed units to check for defects and ensure conformance to specifications, using precision instruments, such as micrometers.
  • Set up, adjust, or operate basic or specialized machine tools used to perform precision machining operations.
  • Program computers or electronic instruments, such as numerically controlled machine tools.

This page includes information from theO*NET 26.1 Databaseby the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration (USDOL/ETA). Used under theCC BY 4.0license. O*NET® is a trademark of USDOL/ETA.