Textile and Footwear Production Machine Operators operate machines to process raw hides and skins, raw textile fibres, and dye, weave and knit fibres for use in textile and footwear production.

A Certificate II or III, or at least 1 year of relevant experience, is usually needed to work in this job. Even with a qualification, sometimes experience or on-the-job training is necessary.

Tasks

  • preparing machines for operation by selecting and installing attachments and components for specialised functions
  • setting and operating controls used to regulate processing operations
  • starting machines and monitoring operation to detect faults and ensure effectiveness of operation
  • loading drums with hides and skins, textiles, and dyeing and tanning solutions
  • cutting and machining leather and synthetic shoe uppers, and making shoes using moulded and cement construction techniques
  • threading loom shuttles with cross-yarn arms
  • positioning and feeding machines with fibre packages
  • repairing broken yarns by tying and splicing ends
  • examining finished products for defects and variations, reporting faults in machines, and carrying out quality control procedures

Job Titles

  • Footwear Production Machine Operator
  • Hide and Skin Processing Machine Operator
  • Knitting Machine Operator
  • Textile Dyeing and Finishing Machine Operator
  • Weaving Machine or Loom Operator
  • Yarn Carding and Spinning Machine Operator
  • Other Textile and Footwear Production Machine Operators
  • Footwear Production Machine Operator

    Operates machines to manufacture ready-to-wear footwear.

    Specialisations: Shoemaking Cutter, Shoemaking Finisher

  • Hide and Skin Processing Machine Operator (also called Leather Production Machine Operator)

    Operates machines to convert raw hides and skins into finished leather for use in clothing, footwear and upholstery.

    Specialisations: Fellmongering Machine Operator, Hide and Skin Fleshing Machine Operator, Sammying Machine Operator, Tanner

  • Knitting Machine Operator (also called Textile Knitter)

    Operates machines to knit fabrics, garment parts and other articles from yarns such as cotton, wool, nylon and rayon.

    Specialisations: Flat Bed Knitter, Warp Knitter

  • Textile Dyeing and Finishing Machine Operator

    Operates machines to bleach, dye and finish knitted garments such as hosiery and woollen garments.

    Specialisations: Textile Dyer, Textile Finisher

  • Weaving Machine or Loom Operator

    Operates looms to weave yarn into cloth, carpet and other fabrics.

    Specialisations: Beamer, Carpet Weaver, Warper

  • Yarn Carding and Spinning Machine Operator

    Operates machines to convert raw textile fibres into continuous untwisted and twisted strands of yarn for use in clothing, carpets, curtains and other fabrics.

    Specialisations: Cotton Ginner, Gill Box Operator, Yarn Comber, Yarn Texture Machine Operator

  • Other Textile and Footwear Production Machine Operators

    Includes Feltmaker, Net Maker, Rope Making Machine Operator, Tufting Machine Operator

Fast Facts

  • $1,146 Weekly Pay
  • 1,300 workers Employment Size
  • Decline Future Growth
  • Lower skill Skill level rating
  • Lower unemployment Unemployment
  • 98.6% Full-Time Full-Time Share
  • 36.8 hours Average full-time
  • 36 years Average age
  • 40.5% female Gender Share

The number of Textile & Footwear Production Machine Operators grew very strongly over the past 5 years and is expected to fall over the next 5 years:
from 1,300 in 2017 to 1,100 by 2022.
There are likely to be less than 1,000 job openings over this time from workers leaving and new jobs being created.

  • Size: This is a very small occupation.
  • Unemployment: Unemployment was below average in 2017.
  • Location: Textile & Footwear Production Machine Operators work in many regions of Australia. Many work in Victoria.
  • Industries: Most work in the Manufacturing industry.
  • Earnings: Full-time workers earn around $1,146 per week (similar to the all jobs average of $1,230). Earnings tend to be lower when starting out and higher as experience grows.
  • Full-time: Most work full-time (98.6%, much higher than the all jobs average of 68.4%) showing part-time work may be hard to find.
  • Hours: Full-time workers spend around 36.8 hours per week at work (compared to the all jobs average of 40.0 hours).
  • Age: The average age is 36 years (compared to the all jobs average of 40 years).
  • Gender: 40.5% of workers are female (compared to the all jobs average of 46.7%).

Employment Outlook

Number of Workers

Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, Department of Jobs and Small Business trend data to May 2017 and Department of Jobs and Small Business projections to 2022.
YearNumber of Workers
20075500
20082900
20094600
20103000
20112500
2012900
20134200
20141100
20152500
2016500
20171300
20221100

Weekly Earnings

Weekly Earnings (Before Tax)

Source: Based on ABS Characteristics of Employment survey, August 2015, Cat. No. 6333.0, Customised Report. Median earnings are before tax and do not include superannuation. Earnings can vary greatly depending on the skills and experience of the worker and the demands of the role. These figures should be used as a guide only, not to determine a wage rate.
EarningsTextile and Footwear Production Machine OperatorsAll Jobs Average
Full-Time Earnings11461230

Main Industries

Main Employing Industries (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2017, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Industries are based on the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC 06).
Main Employing IndustriesIndustry (% share)
Manufacturing92.5
Health Care and Social Assistance6.1
Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing1.4

States and Territories

  • NSW

  • VIC

  • QLD

  • SA

  • TAS

  • NT

  • ACT

Employment by State and Territory (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2017, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian States and Territories, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
StateTextile and Footwear Production Machine OperatorsAll Jobs Average
NSW15.831.6
VIC49.326.2
QLD24.419.7
SA3.56.7
WA5.710.8
TAS1.42.0
NT0.01.1
ACT0.01.8

Age Profile

Age Profile (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2017, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age BracketTextile and Footwear Production Machine OperatorsAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
15-190.0-5.25.2
20-2418.8-9.99.9
25-3432.9-23.623.6
35-4417.3-21.721.7
45-5431.0-20.820.8
55-590.0-8.88.8
60-640.0-6.06.0
65 and Over0.0-4.04.0

Education Level

Highest Level of Education (% Share)

No data is available for the selected graph for this Occupation.

A Certificate II or III, or at least 1 year of relevant experience, is usually needed to work in this job. Even with a qualification, sometimes experience or on-the-job training is necessary.

Before starting a course, check it will provide you with the skills and qualifications you need.

  • Compare undergraduate and postgraduate student experiences and outcomes on the QILT website.
  • Compare Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses, providers and student outcomes on the My Skills website.
  • You might be interested in Textiles, Clothing & Footwear VET training pathways on the AAPathways website.

The course listings on this page are provided by Good Education Group.

Employers look for Textile & Footwear Production Machine Operators who are hardworking, can work well with others and are reliable.

Knowledge

These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.

  1. Administration and Management

    61% Important

    Planning and coordination of people and resources.

  2. Production and Processing

    60% Important

    Raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and ways of making and distributing goods.

  3. English Language

    56% Important

    English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

  4. Customer and Personal Service

    54% Important

    Customer and personal services. This includes understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.

  5. Personnel and Human Resources

    52% Important

    Recruiting and training people. Managing pay and other entitlements like sick and holiday leave. Negotiating pay and conditions.

Occupational Information Network
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 51-6063.00 - Textile Knitting and Weaving Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders.

Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.

Activities

These are kinds of activities workers regularly do in this job.

  1. Handling and Moving Objects

    87% Important

    Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.

  2. Controlling Machines and Processes

    82% Important

    Operate machines or processes either directly or using controls (not including computers or vehicles).

  3. Performing General Physical Activities

    79% Important

    Doing things that use of your arms and legs and whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.

  4. Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material

    79% Important

    Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials for errors, problems or defects.

  5. Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings

    75% Important

    Checking objects, actions, or events, keeping an eye out for problems.

Occupational Information Network
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 51-6063.00 - Textile Knitting and Weaving Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders.

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