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Summary Report for:
51-4072.00 - Molding, Coremaking, and Casting Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic

Set up, operate, or tend metal or plastic molding, casting, or coremaking machines to mold or cast metal or thermoplastic parts or products.

Sample of reported job titles: Core Machine Operator, Cup Fabricating Machine Operator, Cup Operator, Die Cast Technician, Eight Arm Operator, Injection Press Operator, Machine Operator, Press Operator, Process Technician, Production Technician

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Tasks  |  Tools & Technology  |  Knowledge  |  Skills  |  Abilities  |  Work Activities  |  Detailed Work Activities  |  Work Context  |  Job Zone  |  Education  |  Credentials  |  Interests  |  Work Styles  |  Work Values  |  Related Occupations  |  Wages & Employment  |  Job Openings  |  Additional Information

Tasks

  • Observe continuous operation of automatic machines to ensure that products meet specifications and to detect jams or malfunctions, making adjustments as necessary. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Measure and visually inspect products for surface and dimension defects to ensure conformance to specifications, using precision measuring instruments. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Set up, operate, or tend metal or plastic molding, casting, or coremaking machines to mold or cast metal or thermoplastic parts or products. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Position and secure workpieces on machines, and start feeding mechanisms. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Turn valves and dials of machines to regulate pressure, temperature, and speed and feed rates, and to set cycle times. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Remove finished or cured products from dies or molds, using hand tools, air hoses, and other equipment, stamping identifying information on products when necessary. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Skim or pour dross, slag, or impurities from molten metal, using ladles, rakes, hoes, spatulas, or spoons. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Trim excess material from parts, using knives, and grind scrap plastic into powder for reuse. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Cool products after processing to prevent distortion. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Install dies onto machines or presses and coat dies with parting agents, according to work order specifications. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Mix and measure compounds, or weigh premixed compounds, and dump them into machine tubs, cavities, or molds. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Observe meters and gauges to verify and record temperatures, pressures, and press-cycle times. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Spray, smoke, or coat molds with compounds to lubricate or insulate molds, using acetylene torches or sprayers. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Read specifications, blueprints, and work orders to determine setups, temperatures, and time settings required to mold, form, or cast plastic materials, as well as to plan production sequences. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Adjust equipment and workpiece holding fixtures, such as mold frames, tubs, and cutting tables, to ensure proper functioning. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Remove parts such as dies from machines after production runs are finished. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Inventory and record quantities of materials and finished products, requisitioning additional supplies as necessary. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Pour or load metal or sand into melting pots, furnaces, molds, or hoppers, using shovels, ladles, or machines. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Unload finished products from conveyor belts, pack them in containers, and place containers in warehouses. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Connect water hoses to cooling systems of dies, using hand tools. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Preheat tools, dies, plastic materials, or patterns, using blowtorches or other equipment. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Operate hoists to position dies or patterns on foundry floors. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Smooth and clean inner surfaces of molds, using brushes, scrapers, air hoses, or grinding wheels, and fill imperfections with refractory material. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Obtain and move specified patterns to work stations, manually or using hoists, and secure patterns to machines, using wrenches. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Perform maintenance work such as cleaning and oiling machines. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Repair or replace damaged molds, pipes, belts, chains, or other equipment, using hand tools, hand-powered presses, or jib cranes. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Maintain inventories of materials. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Select coolants and lubricants, and start their flow. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Assemble shell halves, patterns, and foundry flasks, and reinforce core boxes, using glue, clamps, wire, bolts, rams, or machines. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Pull level and toggle latches to fill molds, to regulate tension on sheeting, and to release mold covers. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Select and install blades, tools, or other attachments for each operation. See more occupations related to this task.

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Tools & Technology

Tools used in this occupation:

  • Adjustable widemouth pliers — Right angle pliers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Borescope inspection equipment — Video borescopes See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Casting machines — Gravity die casting machines; Pressure die casting machines See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Cleaning scrapers — Hand scrapers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Compressed air gun — Air guns See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Die casting die — Die cast dies See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Die casting machine — Cold chamber die casting machines; Hot chamber die casting machines See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Extruders — Extruding equipment See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Forklifts — Wheeled forklifts See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Foundry ladles — Robotic metal ladles; Standard metal ladles See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Hammers — Aluminum hammers; Brass hammers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Handheld thermometer — Digital handheld thermometers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Heat resistant clothing — Aluminized suits See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Heat tracing equipment — Thermal imaging cameras See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Hex keys — Hex key sets See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Hydraulic hand crimp tool — Hand crimpers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Injection molding machines See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Limit switch — Mechanical limit switches See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Longnose pliers — Duckbill pliers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Machine tending robot — Loading robots See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Metal cutters — Flash trimming knives; Gate cutters See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Micrometers — Digital micrometers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Needlenose pliers — Needle nose pliers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Overhead crane — Electric overhead traveling EOT cranes See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Power clamp — Mold clamps See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Power grinders — Air angle die grinders; Pneumatic die grinders See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Powered platform truck — Powered industrial trucks See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Pressure indicators — Hydraulic pressure gauges See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Pressure or steam cleaners — Pressure washers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Pressure transducer — Melt pressure transducers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Pry bars — Die bars See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Psychrometers — Digital psychrometers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Pullers — Sprue pullers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Radius gauge — Digital radius gauges See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Respirators — Air purifying respirators See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Round nose pliers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Safety glasses — Protective glasses See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Screwdrivers — Multipurpose screwdrivers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Slings — Lifting slings See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Spray gun — Compressed air sprayers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Stop watch — Digital timers; Stopwatches See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Strain gauges — Tie bar strain gauges See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Surface thermometers — Digital surface thermometers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Tape measures — Measuring tapes See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Thermocouples See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Thickness measuring devices — Orifice gauges See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Torque wrenches — Digital torque wrenches See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Trim press — Trim presses See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Utility knives — Deflashing tools See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Wire brushes — Wire cleaning brushes See more occupations related to this tool.

Technology used in this occupation:

  • Analytical or scientific software — HotFlo! Die-Shot Monitor See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Computer aided manufacturing CAM software — Intera Systems Hawk-i; RobotWare DieCast robot operation software; Visi-Trak True-Trak 20/20 Software See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Industrial control software — FANUC iRVision See more occupations related to this technology.

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Knowledge

  • Production and Processing — Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods. See more occupations related to this knowledge.

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Skills

  • Operation and Control — Controlling operations of equipment or systems. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Operation Monitoring — Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Quality Control Analysis — Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Active Listening — Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Monitoring — Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Reading Comprehension — Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents. See more occupations related to this skill.

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Abilities

  • Arm-Hand Steadiness — The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Manual Dexterity — The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Control Precision — The ability to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Multilimb Coordination — The ability to coordinate two or more limbs (for example, two arms, two legs, or one leg and one arm) while sitting, standing, or lying down. It does not involve performing the activities while the whole body is in motion. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer). See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Static Strength — The ability to exert maximum muscle force to lift, push, pull, or carry objects. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Trunk Strength — The ability to use your abdominal and lower back muscles to support part of the body repeatedly or continuously over time without 'giving out' or fatiguing. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Rate Control — The ability to time your movements or the movement of a piece of equipment in anticipation of changes in the speed and/or direction of a moving object or scene. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Auditory Attention — The ability to focus on a single source of sound in the presence of other distracting sounds. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Deductive Reasoning — The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Far Vision — The ability to see details at a distance. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Finger Dexterity — The ability to make precisely coordinated movements of the fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble very small objects. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Oral Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Perceptual Speed — The ability to quickly and accurately compare similarities and differences among sets of letters, numbers, objects, pictures, or patterns. The things to be compared may be presented at the same time or one after the other. This ability also includes comparing a presented object with a remembered object. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Problem Sensitivity — The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Selective Attention — The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Speech Recognition — The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Dynamic Strength — The ability to exert muscle force repeatedly or continuously over time. This involves muscular endurance and resistance to muscle fatigue. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Flexibility of Closure — The ability to identify or detect a known pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) that is hidden in other distracting material. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Inductive Reasoning — The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events). See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Information Ordering — The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations). See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Speech Clarity — The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Stamina — The ability to exert yourself physically over long periods of time without getting winded or out of breath. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Visualization — The ability to imagine how something will look after it is moved around or when its parts are moved or rearranged. See more occupations related to this ability.

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Work Activities

  • Handling and Moving Objects — Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Performing General Physical Activities — Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material — Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates — Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Controlling Machines and Processes — Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles). See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings — Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards — Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People — Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships — Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Processing Information — Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data. See more occupations related to this activity.

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Detailed Work Activities

  • Remove products or workpieces from production equipment. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Mount attachments or tools onto production equipment. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Select production equipment according to product specifications. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Select production input materials. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Place materials into molds. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Operate cranes, hoists, or other moving or lifting equipment. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Monitor equipment operation to ensure that products are not flawed. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Mount materials or workpieces onto production equipment. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Measure dimensions of completed products or workpieces to verify conformance to specifications. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Trim excess material from workpieces. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Heat material or workpieces to prepare for or complete production. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Mix substances to create chemical solutions. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Record operational or production data. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Adjust temperature controls of ovens or other heating equipment. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Smooth metal surfaces or edges. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Review blueprints or other instructions to determine operational methods or sequences. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Apply parting agents or other solutions to molds. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Apply protective or decorative finishes to workpieces or products. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Monitor instruments to ensure proper production conditions. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Load materials into production equipment. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Study blueprints or other instructions to determine equipment setup requirements. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Load items into ovens or furnaces. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Mark products, workpieces, or equipment with identifying information. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Package products for storage or shipment. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Remove accessories, tools, or other parts from equipment. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Operate metal or plastic forming equipment. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Inspect metal, plastic, or composite products. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Operate grinding equipment. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Clean production equipment. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Replace worn equipment components. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Connect supply lines to production equipment or tools. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Set equipment guides, stops, spacers, or other fixtures. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Skim impurities from molten metal. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Fill cracks, imperfections, or holes in products or workpieces. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Maintain inventories of materials, equipment, or products. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Build production molds. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Move products, materials, or equipment between work areas. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Lubricate production equipment. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Maintain production or processing equipment. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Remove workpieces from molds. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Repair templates, patterns, or molds. See more occupations related to this activity.

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Work Context

  • Wear Common Protective or Safety Equipment such as Safety Shoes, Glasses, Gloves, Hearing Protection, Hard Hats, or Life Jackets — 89% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Face-to-Face Discussions — 78% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Pace Determined by Speed of Equipment — 66% responded “Extremely important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Spend Time Using Your Hands to Handle, Control, or Feel Objects, Tools, or Controls — 71% responded “Continually or almost continually.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Sounds, Noise Levels Are Distracting or Uncomfortable — 74% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Spend Time Standing — 53% responded “Continually or almost continually.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Spend Time Making Repetitive Motions — 41% responded “Continually or almost continually.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Indoors, Not Environmentally Controlled — 70% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Freedom to Make Decisions — 34% responded “Some freedom.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Structured versus Unstructured Work — 36% responded “Some freedom.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Exposed to Contaminants — 55% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Very Hot or Cold Temperatures — 40% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Work With Work Group or Team — 42% responded “Extremely important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Importance of Repeating Same Tasks — 27% responded “Important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Time Pressure — 37% responded “Once a month or more but not every week.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Exposed to Hazardous Equipment — 54% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Frequency of Decision Making — 41% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — 29% responded “Important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Physical Proximity — 46% responded “Moderately close (at arm's length).” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Contact With Others — 33% responded “Constant contact with others.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results — 41% responded “Minor results.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Duration of Typical Work Week — 73% responded “40 hours.” See more occupations related to this work context.

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Job Zone

Title Job Zone Two: Some Preparation Needed
Education These occupations usually require a high school diploma.
Related Experience Some previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is usually needed. For example, a teller would benefit from experience working directly with the public.
Job Training Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.
Job Zone Examples These occupations often involve using your knowledge and skills to help others. Examples include sheet metal workers, forest fire fighters, customer service representatives, physical therapist aides, salespersons (retail), and tellers.
SVP Range (4.0 to < 6.0)

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Education


Percentage of Respondents
Education Level Required
65   High school diploma or equivalent Help
21   Less than high school diploma
14   Post-secondary certificate Help

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Credentials

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Interests

Interest code: RCI

  • Realistic — Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others. See more occupations related to this interest.
  • Conventional — Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow. See more occupations related to this interest.
  • Investigative — Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally. See more occupations related to this interest.

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Work Styles

  • Attention to Detail — Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Dependability — Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Independence — Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Self Control — Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Cooperation — Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges. See more occupations related to this work style.

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Work Values

  • Support — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical. See more occupations related to this work value.
  • Relationships — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service. See more occupations related to this work value.
  • Independence — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy. See more occupations related to this work value.

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Related Occupations

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Wages & Employment Trends

Median wages (2014) $13.85 hourly, $28,810 annual
State wages Local Salary Info
 
Employment (2012) 125,000 employees
Projected growth (2012-2022) Decline (-3% or lower) Decline (-3% or lower)
Projected job openings (2012-2022) 15,100
State trends Employment Trends
 
Top industries (2012)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2014 wage data external site and 2012-2022 employment projections external site. "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2012-2022). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.

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Job Openings on the Web

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Sources of Additional Information

Disclaimer: Sources are listed to provide additional information on related jobs, specialties, and/or industries. Links to non-DOL Internet sites are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement.

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