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Career profile Machine Assembler

Also known as Assembler, Assembly Line Worker, Cell Technician, Engine Assembler, Engine Builder, Field Service Technician, Fitter, Large Engine Assembler, Machine Assembler, Mechanical Assembler

Machine Assembler

Also known as Assembler, Assembly Line Worker, Cell Technician

Interests Profile
  • Realistic
  • Conventional
  • Investigative
Pay Range
$30,930 - $65,740 (annual)
Required Skills
  • Operations Monitoring
  • Reading Comprehension
  • Quality Control Analysis
Knowledge Areas
  • Mechanical
  • Production and Processing
  • Customer and Personal Service
Core tasks
  • Read and interpret assembly blueprints or specifications manuals, and plan assembly or building operations.
  • Inspect, operate, and test completed products to verify functioning, machine capabilities, or conformance to customer specifications.
  • Position or align components for assembly, manually or using hoists.
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What does a Machine Assembler do?

Machine Assemblers construct, assemble, or rebuild machines, such as engines, turbines, and similar equipment used in such industries as construction, extraction, textiles, and paper manufacturing.

What kind of tasks does a Machine Assembler perform regularly?

Machine Assemblers are often responsible for overseeing or executing some or all of the following tasks:

  • Read and interpret assembly blueprints or specifications manuals, and plan assembly or building operations.
  • Inspect, operate, and test completed products to verify functioning, machine capabilities, or conformance to customer specifications.
  • Position or align components for assembly, manually or using hoists.
  • Set and verify parts clearances.
  • Verify conformance of parts to stock lists or blueprints, using measuring instruments such as calipers, gauges, or micrometers.
  • Fasten or install piping, fixtures, or wiring and electrical components to form assemblies or subassemblies, using hand tools, rivet guns, or welding equipment.
  • Remove rough spots and smooth surfaces to fit, trim, or clean parts, using hand tools or power tools.
  • Lay out and drill, ream, tap, or cut parts for assembly.
  • Rework, repair, or replace damaged parts or assemblies.

The above responsibilities are specific to Machine Assemblers. More generally, Machine Assemblers are involved in several broader types of activities:

Handling and Moving Objects
Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.
Controlling Machines and Processes
Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).
Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Materials
Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
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 materials.
Getting Information
Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.

What is a Machine Assembler salary?

The median salary for a Machine Assembler is $45,770, and the average salary is $47,190. Both the median and average roughly describe the middle of the Machine Assembler salary range, but the average is more easily affected by extremely high or low salaries.

Many Machine Assemblers earn significantly more or less than the average, due to several factors. About 10% of Machine Assemblers earn less than $30,930 per year, 25% earn less than $36,200, 75% earn less than $58,540, and 90% earn less than $65,740.

Between the years of 2020 and 2030, the number of Machine Assemblers is expected to change by -11.9%, and there should be roughly 4,000 open positions for Machine Assemblers every year.

Median annual salary
Typical salary range
$30,930 - $65,740
Projected growth (2020 - 2030)

What personality traits are common among Machine Assemblers?


Career interests describe a person's preferences for different types of working environments and activities. When a person's interest match the demands of an occupation, people are usually more engaged and satisfied in that role.

Compared to most occupations, those who work as a Machine Assembler are usually higher in their Realistic interests.

Machine Assemblers typically have very strong Realistic interests. 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.


People differ in their values, or what is most important to them for building job satisfaction and fulfillment.

Compared to most people, those working as a Machine Assembler tend to value Support, Relationships, and Independence.

Most importantly, Machine Assemblers strongly value Support. Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees.

Second, Machine Assemblers moderately 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.

Lastly, Machine Assemblers moderately value Independence. Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions.

Psychological Demands

Each occupation brings its own set of psychological demands, which describe the characteristics necessary to perform the job well.

In order to perform their job successfully, people who work as Machine Assemblers must consistently demonstrate qualities such as attention to detail, cooperation, and integrity.

Below, you'll find a list of qualities typically required of Machine Assemblers, ranked by importance:

Attention to Detail
Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
Job requires being honest and ethical.
Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.

What education and training do Machine Assemblers need?

Working as a Machine Assembler usually requires a high school diploma.

Machine Assemblers need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with this occupation.

Educational degrees among Machine Assemblers

  • 13.0% did not complete high school or secondary school
  • 46.4% completed high school or secondary school
  • 31.2% completed some college coursework
  • 5.2% earned a Associate's degree
  • 4.2% earned a Bachelor's degree

Knowledge and expertise required by Machine Assemblers

Machine Assemblers may benefit from understanding of specialized subject areas, such as mechanical, production and processing, or customer and personal service knowledge.

The list below shows several areas in which most Machine Assemblers might want to build proficiency, ranked by importance.

Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
Production and Processing
Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
Customer and Personal Service
Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
Engineering and Technology
Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
Administration and Management
Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.

Important Abilities needed by Machine Assemblers

Machine Assemblers must develop a particular set of abilities to perform their job well. Abilities are individual capacities that influence a person's information processing, sensory perception, motor coordination, and physical strength or endurance. Individuals may naturally have certain abilities without explicit training, but most abilities can be sharpened somewhat through practice.

For example, Machine Assemblers need abilities such as arm-hand steadiness, manual dexterity, and finger dexterity in order to perform their job at a high level. The list below shows several important abilities for Machine Assemblers, ranked by their relative importance.

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.
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.
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.
Near Vision
The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
The ability to imagine how something will look after it is moved around or when its parts are moved or rearranged.

Critical Skills needed by Machine Assemblers

Skills are developed capacities that enable people to function effectively in real-world settings. Unlike abilities, skills are typically easier to build through practice and experience. Skills influence effectiveness in areas such as learning, working with others, design, troubleshooting, and more.

Machine Assemblers frequently use skills like operations monitoring, reading comprehension, and quality control analysis to perform their job effectively. The list below shows several critical skills for Machine Assemblers, ranked by their relative importance.

Operations Monitoring
Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
Reading Comprehension
Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work-related documents.
Quality Control Analysis
Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
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.
Talking to others to convey information effectively.

What is the source of this information?

The information provided on this page is adapted from data and descriptions published by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration under the CC BY 4.0 license. TraitLab has modified some information for ease of use and reading, and the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment, and Training Administration has not approved, endorsed, or tested these modifications.

If you have any questions or suggestions about this information, please send a message.