Welders

(NOC 7237)

in All Trades and Transportation

Welders use a variety of welding processes and equipment to join and sever materials for construction and manufacturing purposes. This group also includes machine operators who use previously set up production welding, brazing, and soldering equipment. They work for companies that manufacture structural steel and platework, boilers, heavy machinery, aircraft and ships and other metal products, and by welding contractors and welding shops, or they may be self-employed. Welders may specialize in certain types of welding like custom fabrication, ship building and repair, aerospace precision welding, pressure vessel welding, pipeline construction welding, structural construction welding, or machinery and equipment repair welding.

Job Outlook

Average

Read more

  • Estimate Moderate growth employment change, 2019-2021
  • Estimate 170 openings due to growth and retirements, 2018-2020
  • Estimate High rate of unemployment in 2019

Compared to: All Trades and Transportation

  • Estimate 205 employment change, 2019-2021
  • Estimate 4385 openings due to growth and retirements, 2018-2020
  • Estimate rate of unemployment not available for these occupation.

The employment outlook over the next few years for this occupational group is “average”, which indicates the chances of a qualified individual finding work is comparable to the average for all occupations in Nova Scotia. This is a fairly large occupation in Nova Scotia so job opportunities occur fairly regularly. The number employed in this occupation is expected to grow moderately over the next few years, which will likely provide some additional opportunities for employment. With a moderate percent of workers being 55 years of age and older, retirements are expected to contribute somewhat to employment opportunities over the coming years. Welders and Related Machine Operators most commonly work full-time hours.

The median employment income for 45% of Welders and Related Machine Operators who worked full-time, year-round in 2015 was $54,897. Across all occupations in Nova Scotia, 59% of those who worked full-time year round had a median employment income of $43,600.
(Source: 2016 Census)

Hourly Pay

$19.00

Minimum

$28.00

Median

$36.03

Maximum

Annual Pay

$10,768

Minimum

$47,359

Median

$89,896

Maximum

Compared to: All Trades and Transportation

Hourly Pay

$13.50

Minimum

$27.25

Median

$35.50

Maximum

Annual Pay

$7,580

Minimum

$37,269

Median

$79,787

Maximum

About the job

Nature of work

Welders use a variety of welding processes and equipment to join and sever materials for construction and manufacturing purposes. This group also includes machine operators who use previously set up production welding, brazing, and soldering equipment. They work for companies that manufacture structural steel and platework, boilers, heavy machinery, aircraft and ships and other metal products, and by welding contractors and welding shops, or they may be self-employed. Welders may specialize in certain types of welding like custom fabrication, ship building and repair, aerospace precision welding, pressure vessel welding, pipeline construction welding, structural construction welding, or machinery and equipment repair welding.

Job duties

Welders:

  • Read and interpret blueprints or welding process specifications.
  • Run manual or semi-automatic welding equipment to fuse metal segments using processes like gas tungsten arc welding (GTAW), gas metal arc welding (GMAW), flux-cored arc welding (FCAW), plasma arc welding (PAW), shielded metal arc welding (SMAW), oxy-acetylene welding (OAW), resistance welding and submerged arc welding (SAW).
  • Use manual or semi-automatic flame-cutting equipment.
  • Use brazing and soldering equipment.
  • Use metal shaping machines like brakes, shears and other metal straightening and bending machines.
  • Repair worn parts of metal products by welding on extra layers.

Welding, brazing and soldering machine operators:

  • Use previously set up welding machines like spot, butt and seam resistance or gas and arc welding machines to make or repair metal parts.
  • Use previously set up brazing or soldering machines to bond metal parts or to fill holes, indentations, and seams of metal articles with solder.
  • Start up, shut down, adjust, and monitor robotic welding production line.
  • Help with welding, brazing, and soldering equipment maintenance and repair.
  • May adjust welding heads and tooling according to work specifications.

Sample job titles

  • fabrication welder
  • gas and arc welder
  • high pressure welder
  • maintenance welder
  • production welder
  • spot welder
  • submerged arc welder
  • welder
  • welding machine operator

Skills

You should enjoy working with your hands. Good hand-eye coordination, physical strength, and stamina are necessary. You must also be cautious, alert, and able to concentrate over long periods of time. The ability to perform mathematical functions is helpful. In most cases, you must also be able to cooperate and coordinate your work with others.

Job requirements

Welders

  • High school is usually required.
  • A three-year apprenticeship program or a combination of over three years of work experience in the trade and some college or industry courses in welding is usually required to be eligible for trade certification.
  • Trade certification is available, but voluntary, in Nova Scotia.
  • Red Seal Endorsement (RSE) is also available to qualified welders upon successful completion of the interprovincial Red Seal examination.

Welding, brazing and soldering machine operators

  • Some high school education is required.
  • Several months of on-the-job training are usually provided.
  • Experience as a machine operator helper may be required.
  • Experience with robotics may be required.

Other considerations

The wage rate for apprentices is usually a percentage of the journeyperson rate, increasing upon completion of each stage of the apprenticeship program. Shiftwork is common in these trades. Experience as a machine operator helper and experience with robotics may be required. Progression to supervisory positions is possible with experience.

By the numbers

Quick look

2,250

employed in 2016

91.6%

employed full-time

6.9%

self employed

3.1%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
96.9%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
43.2

median age

Compared to: All Trades and Transportation

57,925

employed in 2016

85.9%

employed full-time

11.8%

self employed

5.3%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
94.7%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
46.8

median age

Where will I likely work?

34.1%

Halifax

22.8%

North Shore

17.3%

Cape Breton

15.7%

Southern

10.0%

Annapolis Valley

Compared to: All NS Occupations

47.0%

Halifax

15.6%

North Shore

12.9%

Annapolis Valley

12.7%

Cape Breton

11.8%

Southern

Top Industries of Employment

46.4%

Manufacturing

18.6%

Other services (except public administration)

12.1%

Construction

5.6%

Public administration

3.6%

Mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction

What is the age of Employment?

22.0%

45-54

20.0%

25-34

19.0%

35-44

18.0%

55-64

15.0%

15-24

6.0%

65+

Compared to: All Trades and Transportation

24.4%

45-54

22.1%

55-64

17.7%

35-44

17.7%

25-34

10.9%

15-24

Top levels of education

47.1%

Trades certificate

$53,159 median annual income
35.8%

College certificate or diploma

$42,284 median annual income
8.0%

High school

$42,320 median annual income
7.8%

Less than high school

$33,734 median annual income
0.7%

University certificate or diploma

N/A

Compared to: All Trades and Transportation

29.2%

Trades certificate

$46,494 median annual income
25.5%

High school

$31,260 median annual income
22.3%

College certificate or diploma

$42,050 median annual income
18.7%

Less than high school

$28,319 median annual income
2.8%

Bachelor's degree

$30,527 median annual income

Education & training

Adult high school/secondary diploma programs

This program is typically offered at the high school level.

The Nova Scotia School for Adult Learning (NSSAL) administers, coordinates, and supports the development and delivery of adult education programs through learning partners in Nova Scotia. Our learning partners include the Nova Scotia Community College, Adult High Schools, Université Sainte-Anne, and community-based learning organizations that offer tuition-free programming across the province. NSSAL offers clear, accessible pathways from adult basic education to a high school credential or GED, empowering Nova Scotians to achieve their learning and employment goals.

Institutions providing this program

Universite Sainte-Anne

Siège Social: 1695, Route 1

Pointe-de-l'Église, NS B0W 1M0

(902) 769-2114

Nova Scotia Community College - Adult Learning

PO Box 220

Halifax, NS B3J 2M4

(866) 679-6722

Adult High Schools

Various, NS

Community Learning Organizations

Various, NS

Metal building assembly/assembler

This program is typically offered at the trades/college level.

This instructional program class includes any program that prepares individuals to construct industrial, storage, and commercial metal structures using prefabricated framing and siding components. These programs include courses in sheet metal working, ironworking, assembly and fastening techniques, blueprint reading, site preparation, structural design principles, safety, and applicable codes and regulations.

Institutions providing this program

Nova Scotia Community College - Akerley Campus

21 Woodlawn Road

Dartmouth, NS B2W 2R7

(902) 491-4900

Nova Scotia Community College - Marconi Campus

PO Box 1042, 1240 Grand Lake Road

Sydney, NS B1P 6J7

(902) 563-2450

Apprenticeship Training

Department of Labour and Advanced Education 2021 Brunswick Street, PO Box 578

Halifax, NS B3J 2S9

(800) 494-5651

Welding technology/welder

This program is typically offered at the trades/college level.

This instructional program class includes any program that prepares individuals to apply technical knowledge and skills to join or cut metal surfaces. These programs include courses in arc welding, resistance welding, brazing and soldering, cutting, high-energy beam welding and cutting, solid state welding, ferrous and non-ferrous materials, oxidation-reduction reactions, welding metallurgy, welding processes and heat treating, structural design, safety, and applicable codes and standards.

Institutions providing this program

Nova Scotia Community College - Akerley Campus

21 Woodlawn Road

Dartmouth, NS B2W 2R7

(902) 491-4900

Nova Scotia Community College - Burridge Campus

372 Pleasant Street

Yarmouth, NS B5A 2L2

(902) 742-3501

Nova Scotia Community College - Pictou Campus & School of Fisheries

PO Box 820, 39 Acadia Avenue

Stellarton, NS B0K 1S0

(902) 752-2002

Nova Scotia Community College - Strait Area Campus & Nautical Institute

226 Reeves Street

Port Hawkesbury, NS B9A 2A2

(902) 625-2380

Nova Scotia Community College - Marconi Campus

PO Box 1042, 1240 Grand Lake Road

Sydney, NS B1P 6J7

(902) 563-2450

Apprenticeship Training

Department of Labour and Advanced Education 2021 Brunswick Street, PO Box 578

Halifax, NS B3J 2S9

(800) 494-5651

Employment requirements & contacts

Regulations

High Pressure Welder

Certificate of Qualification (Mandatory): This job is a regulated designated trade in Nova Scotia. Certification is required to work in this job.

Regulating body:
Nova Scotia Department of Labour and Advanced Education, Technical Safety Division
5151 Terminal Road, 6th floor, PO Box 697
Halifax, NS B3J 2T8
(844) 424-3200
(902) 424-3239
Welder

Certificate of Qualification (Voluntary): This job is a designated trade in Nova Scotia. Employers may require certification, however; a certificate is not needed to legally work in this job.

Regulating body:
Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency
2021 Brunswick Street, PO Box 578
Halifax, NS B3J 2S9
(800) 494-5651
(902) 424-0717

Contacts

Canadian Welding Bureau, Atlantic Region
73 Tacoma Drive, Suite 304
Dartmouth, NS B2W 3Y6
Tel: (800) 844-6790
Red Seal
c/o Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency PO Box 578
Halifax, B3J 2S9
Tel: (902) 424-5651
Fax: (902) 424-0717

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