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Career profile Rigger

Also known as Gantry Rigger, Hand Rigger, Heavy Lift Rigger, Machinery Erector, Machinery Mover, Marine Rigger, Motor Rigger, Rigger, Rigging Fabricator, Ship Rigger

Rigger

Also known as Gantry Rigger, Hand Rigger, Heavy Lift Rigger

Interests Profile
  • Realistic
  • Conventional
  • Investigative
Pay Range
$32,480 - $78,200 (annual)
Required Skills
  • Operation and Control
  • Reading Comprehension
  • Active Listening
Knowledge Areas
  • Mechanical
  • Production and Processing
  • Public Safety and Security
Core tasks
  • Test rigging to ensure safety and reliability.
  • Signal or verbally direct workers engaged in hoisting and moving loads to ensure safety of workers and materials.
  • Control movement of heavy equipment through narrow openings or confined spaces, using chainfalls, gin poles, gallows frames, and other equipment.
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What does a Rigger do?

Riggers set up or repair rigging for construction projects, manufacturing plants, logging yards, ships and shipyards, or for the entertainment industry.

What kind of tasks does a Rigger perform regularly?

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

  • Test rigging to ensure safety and reliability.
  • Signal or verbally direct workers engaged in hoisting and moving loads to ensure safety of workers and materials.
  • Control movement of heavy equipment through narrow openings or confined spaces, using chainfalls, gin poles, gallows frames, and other equipment.
  • Tilt, dip, and turn suspended loads to maneuver over, under, or around obstacles, using multi-point suspension techniques.
  • Select gear, such as cables, pulleys, and winches, according to load weights and sizes, facilities, and work schedules.
  • Dismantle and store rigging equipment after use.
  • Attach loads to rigging to provide support or prepare them for moving, using hand and power tools.
  • Manipulate rigging lines, hoists, and pulling gear to move or support materials, such as heavy equipment, ships, or theatrical sets.
  • Align, level, and anchor machinery.
  • Load machines onto trucks to prepare for transportation.
  • Attach pulleys and blocks to fixed overhead structures, such as beams, ceilings, and gin pole booms, using bolts and clamps.
  • Fabricate, set up, and repair rigging, supporting structures, hoists, and pulling gear, using hand and power tools.
  • Clean and dress machine surfaces and component parts.

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

Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Materials
Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
Handling and Moving Objects
Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.
Getting Information
Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
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.

What is a Rigger salary?

The median salary for a Rigger is $50,850, and the average salary is $53,020. Both the median and average roughly describe the middle of the Rigger salary range, but the average is more easily affected by extremely high or low salaries.

Many Riggers earn significantly more or less than the average, due to several factors. About 10% of Riggers earn less than $32,480 per year, 25% earn less than $38,680, 75% earn less than $62,960, and 90% earn less than $78,200.

Between the years of 2020 and 2030, the number of Riggers is expected to change by 12.2%, and there should be roughly 2,500 open positions for Riggers every year.

Median annual salary
$50,850
Typical salary range
$32,480 - $78,200
Projected growth (2020 - 2030)
12.2%

What personality traits are common among Riggers?

Interests

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 Rigger are usually higher in their Realistic and Conventional interests.

Riggers 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.

Also, Riggers typically have strong Conventional interests. 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.

Values

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 Rigger tend to value Relationships, Support, and Working Conditions.

Most importantly, Riggers strongly 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.

Second, Riggers strongly value Support. Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees.

Lastly, Riggers moderately value Working Conditions. Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions.

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 Riggers must consistently demonstrate qualities such as dependability, attention to detail, and cooperation.

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

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

What education and training do Riggers need?

Working as a Rigger usually requires a high school diploma.

Riggers 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 Riggers

  • 6.8% did not complete high school or secondary school
  • 45.2% completed high school or secondary school
  • 25.9% completed some college coursework
  • 9.6% earned a Associate's degree
  • 12.1% earned a Bachelor's degree
  • 0.5% earned a Master's degree

Knowledge and expertise required by Riggers

Riggers may benefit from understanding of specialized subject areas, such as mechanical, production and processing, or public safety and security knowledge.

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

Mechanical
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.
Public Safety and Security
Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
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.
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 Riggers

Riggers 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, Riggers need abilities such as problem sensitivity, control precision, and multilimb coordination in order to perform their job at a high level. The list below shows several important abilities for Riggers, ranked by their relative importance.

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 that there is a problem.
Control Precision
The ability to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions.
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.
Near Vision
The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
Depth Perception
The ability to judge which of several objects is closer or farther away from you, or to judge the distance between you and an object.

Critical Skills needed by Riggers

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.

Riggers frequently use skills like operation and control, reading comprehension, and active listening to perform their job effectively. The list below shows several critical skills for Riggers, ranked by their relative importance.

Operation and Control
Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
Reading Comprehension
Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work-related documents.
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.
Critical Thinking
Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions, or approaches to problems.
Monitoring
Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

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.

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