Chemical Plant Machine Operators

(NOC 9421)

in All Manufacturing and Utilities

Chemical plant machine operators monitor and use machinery to blend, mix, process and package a wide range of specialty chemicals, pharmaceuticals, cleaning and toiletry products. They work for chemical, cleaning compound, ink and adhesive industries, but may also work for chemical processing departments in other industries.

Job Outlook

Undetermined

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  • Estimate change in employment not available for this occupation.
  • Estimate openings due to growth and retirements not available for this occupation.
  • Estimate rate of unemployment not available for this occupation.

Compared to: All Manufacturing and Utilities

  • Estimate 75 employment change, 2019-2021
  • Estimate 1460 openings due to growth and retirements, 2018-2020
  • Estimate rate of unemployment not available for these occupation.

This is not a large occupation in Nova Scotia so job opportunities may not be that frequent. 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. Chemical Plant Machine Operators most commonly work full-time hours.

The median employment income for 60% of Chemical Plant Machine Operators who worked full-time, year-round in 2015 was $21,755. 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

N/A

Minimum

N/A

Median

N/A

Maximum

Annual Pay

N/A

Minimum

$21,704

Median

N/A

Maximum

Compared to: All Manufacturing and Utilities

Hourly Pay

$13.00

Minimum

$23.91

Median

$35.04

Maximum

Annual Pay

$6,056

Minimum

$30,111

Median

$70,518

Maximum

About the job

Nature of work

Chemical plant machine operators monitor and use machinery to blend, mix, process and package a wide range of specialty chemicals, pharmaceuticals, cleaning and toiletry products. They work for chemical, cleaning compound, ink and adhesive industries, but may also work for chemical processing departments in other industries.

Job duties

Chemical plant machine operators:

  • Watch meters, gauges and electronic instrumentation on one or more chemical or formulation units like mixers, kettles, blenders, dryers, tabletting, encapsulation, granulation and coating machines.
  • Measure, weigh and load chemical ingredients following formulation cards.
  • Start up, shut down, troubleshoot and clean equipment.
  • Adjust processing machines and equipment.
  • Monitor reaction processes and transfers of products in conformance with safety procedures.
  • Take samples and do regular chemical and physical tests of products.
  • Record production data.
  • May run equipment from a control room or from control consoles located near the production units.

Sample job titles

  • batch mixer
  • blender
  • capsule machine operator
  • evaporator operator
  • formulations blender operator
  • glue blender
  • granulator machine operator
  • mixer
  • screener
  • soap maker

Skills

You should be responsible, alert, and in good physical health. Coordination, agility, and a mechanical skill are important. You must also be able to take direction and carry out instructions given by a supervisor.

Job requirements

  • High school is usually required.
  • Mixer and blender operators usually need several months to one year of informal, on-the-job training.
  • Some operators working in pharmaceutical, explosives and agricultural chemical or in specialty chemical plants need more than one year of formal and informal company training.
  • Experience in chemical products processing as an assistant, labourer or helper may be necessary for some jobs.
  • Certification in the transportation of dangerous goods (TDG), first aid, firefighting or workplace hazardous materials information system (WHMIS) may be necessary.

Other considerations

Experience as an assistant, helper, tender or packer, often in the same company, may be required as an entry point to these positions. Movement between employers making similar products is possible for some of the more skilled operators in this group. Movement to supervisor positions or to process control jobs is possible with experience. Personal protective equipment may be required when working with some types of chemicals or pharmaceuticals.

By the numbers

Quick look

75

employed in 2016

93.3%

employed full-time

13.3%

self employed

33.3%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
66.7%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
38.2

median age

Compared to: All Manufacturing and Utilities

15,275

employed in 2016

83.2%

employed full-time

3.2%

self employed

27.6%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
72.4%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
44.7

median age

Where will I likely work?

26.7%

North Shore

26.7%

Halifax

20.0%

Annapolis Valley

13.3%

Southern

13.3%

Cape Breton

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

53.8%

Manufacturing

15.4%

Accommodation and food services

15.4%

Wholesale trade

15.4%

Health care and social assistance

What is the age of Employment?

27.0%

35-44

27.0%

25-34

20.0%

55-64

13.0%

45-54

13.0%

15-24

Compared to: All Manufacturing and Utilities

24.5%

45-54

20.8%

55-64

19.3%

35-44

16.5%

25-34

15.0%

15-24

Top levels of education

40.0%

High school

N/A
26.7%

Less than high school

N/A
13.3%

College certificate or diploma

N/A
13.3%

Bachelor's degree

N/A
13.3%

Trades certificate

N/A

Compared to: All Manufacturing and Utilities

38.1%

High school

$28,505 median annual income
23.3%

Less than high school

$19,224 median annual income
19.9%

College certificate or diploma

$38,781 median annual income
12.2%

Trades certificate

$43,975 median annual income
4.5%

Bachelor's degree

$39,715 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

Employment requirements & contacts

No regulating bodies were found under this occupation profile

Contacts

Nova Scotia Department of Labour and Advanced Education, Occupational Health and Safety Division
PO Box 697, 5151 Terminal Road
Halifax, NS B3J 2T8
Tel: (902) 424-5300

Additional resources

There are no additional resources for this occupation.

Job postings

There are currently no job postings for this occupation.