Plastics and Rubber Factory Workers

ANZSCO ID 8392

Overview

Snapshot

Employed
700
Future Growth
-5%
Weekly Earnings
N/A
Full-Time Share
80%
Female Share
25%
Average age
45

Summary

Plastics and Rubber Factory Workers perform routine tasks in manufacturing plastic and rubber products.

Tasks

  • dumping material into hoppers of machines

  • stopping moulding machines and discharging contents

  • cutting foam products from foam blocks

  • cleaning, smoothing and waxing moulds for making products

  • brushing and spraying release agents onto moulds to assist with the removal of moulded products

  • building up layers of fibreglass and resin on moulds

  • cleaning work areas, tools and equipment

  • may smooth rough edges of moulds using files, grinders and sanders

Characteristics

Job Type
Labourers
Skill Level
Entry level
ANZSCO Occupation group
Unemployment Rate
Above average
Industries
Pathway(s)
  • Vocational Education and Training (VET)
  • Informal or on-the-job
Interests
  • Practical
Physical Demand
  • Light
  • Medium

Outlook

Employment Outlook

JSA produces employment projections to show where likely future job opportunities may be. The latest data are for the five years from November 2021 to November 2026. Over this period, the number of workers:

  • is expected to decline
  • is likely to reach 1,300 by 2026.
  • Source: Jobs and Skills Australia Employment Projections to 2026.

    Notes: The number employed includes people who work in this occupation as their main job. People who work in more than one job are counted against the occupation they work the most hours in.

    Employment projections figures are rounded to the nearest 100. Calculations based on these rounded figures may result in differences to the numbers that are displayed on this page. Employment projections data (including occupations) can be downloaded from the Employment Projections page.

Projected Change
-5%
(or -100 jobs)
From
1,400
in 2021
To
1,300
in 2026

Number of Workers

Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, ABS seasonally adjusted data to November 2021 and Jobs and Skills Australia Employment Projections to 2026.
Year Employment
2011 2,800
2012 5,500
2013 3,200
2014 4,900
2015 3,700
2016 2,500
2017 600
2018 3,300
2019 3,600
2020 1,500
2021 1,400
2026 1,300

Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, ABS seasonally adjusted data to November 2021 and Jobs and Skills Australia Employment Projections to 2026.


Earnings and hours

Working arrangements

  • Around 80% of people employed as Plastics and Rubber Factory Workers work full-time hours, in all their jobs combined. This is 14 percentage points above the all jobs average (66%).

    Full-time workers work an average of 40 hours per week in their main job. This is 4 hours less than the all jobs average (44 hours per week).

    Sources:Full-time share and full-time hours: ABS, 2016 Census, customised report. Compared to the all jobs average.


Industries

Main industries

1
Manufacturing
95.5%
2
Administrative and Support Services
4.5%
  • Most Plastics and Rubber Factory Workers work in the Manufacturing industry.

    Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2021.


Regions

Employment across Australia

NSW

25.1% All occupations: 31.6%

VIC

38.9% All occupations: 25.6%

QLD

18.5% All occupations: 20.0%

SA

10.1% All occupations: 7.0%

WA

6.1% All occupations: 10.8%

TAS

1.1% All occupations: 2.0%

NT

0.0% All occupations: 1.0%

ACT

0.2% All occupations: 1.9%

Employment by State and Territory (% Share)

State Plastics and Rubber Factory Workers All Jobs Average
NSW 25.1 31.6
VIC 38.9 25.6
QLD 18.5 20.0
SA 10.1 7.0
WA 6.1 10.8
TAS 1.1 2.0
NT 0.0 1.0
ACT 0.2 1.9


  • Around 73% of Plastics and Rubber Factory Workers live in capital cities, compared with the all jobs average of 62%.

    Victoria and South Australia have a large share of employment relative to their population size.

    The region with the largest share of workers is Melbourne - Outer East.

    Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian states, territories and regions, in this job compared to the all jobs average.


Worker profile

Age and gender

Age In Years
45
All Jobs Average is 40
Female Share
25%
All Jobs Average is 48%
  • The median age of Plastics and Rubber Factory Workers is 45 years. This is higher than the all jobs average of 40 years.

    A large share of workers are aged 45 to 54 years.

    Females make up 25% of the workforce. This is 23 percentage points below the all jobs average of 48%.

    Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile and gender share compared to the all jobs average.

Age Profile (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age Bracket Plastics and Rubber Factory Workers All Jobs Average
15-19 4.0 5.0
20-24 8.3 9.3
25-34 17.0 22.9
35-44 20.5 22.0
45-54 26.8 21.6
55-59 13.7 9.0
60-64 7.0 6.0
65 and Over 2.7 4.2
Median Age 45 40

Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.


Employment Pathways

Education, training and experience

Formal qualifications are not essential to work as a Plastics or Rubber Factory Worker. Although some workers have a certificate II or III in polymer processing.

Visit

  • My Skills to compare Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses, providers and student outcomes.
  • AAPathways website to explore Plastics, Rubber & Cablemaking VET training pathways.

Highest Level of Education (% Share)

Source: ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Highest qualification completed by workers in this job (in any field of study). Qualifications needed by new workers might be different from the qualifications of workers already in the job.
Type of Qualification Plastics and Rubber Factory Workers All Jobs Average
Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate 1.2 10.1
Bachelor degree 4.8 21.8
Advanced Diploma/Diploma 4.4 11.6
Certificate III/IV 15.5 21.1
Year 12 26.0 18.1
Year 11 10.2 4.8
Year 10 and below 37.9 12.5

Source: ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Highest qualification completed by workers in this job (in any field of study). Qualifications needed by new workers might be different from the qualifications of workers already in the job.


Skills and Knowledge

Employers look for Plastics and Rubber Factory Workers who work well in a team, can communicate clearly and are reliable.

Skills

Skills can be improved through training or experience.

  • 52%

    Operation monitoring

    Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.

  • 48%

    Operation and control

    Controlling equipment or systems.

  • 46%

    Quality control analysis

    Doing tests and checking products, services, or processes to make sure they are working properly.

  • 45%

    Critical thinking

    Thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem.

  • 45%

    Equipment maintenance

    Maintaining equipment and deciding what maintenance will be needed in the future.

  • 43%

    Active listening

    Listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions.

  • 43%

    Complex problem solving

    Noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it.

  • 43%

    Instructing

    Teaching people how to do something.

  • 43%

    Monitoring

    Keeping track of how well work is progressing so you can make changes or improvements.

  • 43%

    Reading comprehension

    Reading work related information.

  • 43%

    Speaking

    Talking to others.

  • 41%

    Coordination with others

    Being adaptable and coordinating work with other people.

  • 41%

    Repairing

    Fixing machines or systems.

  • 41%

    Troubleshooting

    Figuring out why a machine or system went wrong and working out what to do about it.

  • 41%

    Active learning

    Being able to use what you have learnt to solve problems now and again in the future.

  • 39%

    Time management

    Managing your own and other peoples' time to get work done.

  • 37%

    Judgment and decision making

    Figuring out the pros and cons of different options and choosing the best one.

  • 37%

    Writing

    Writing things for co-workers or customers.

  • 30%

    Social perceptiveness

    Understanding why people react the way they do.

  • 30%

    Equipment selection

    Deciding on the kind of tools and equipment needed to do a job.


Knowledge

These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.

  • 66%

    Mechanical

    Machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.

  • 57%

    Mathematics

    Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.

  • 51%

    Production and processing

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

  • 49%

    Engineering and technology

    Use engineering, science and technology to design and produce goods and services.

  • 49%

    Technical design

    Design techniques, tools, and principles used to make detailed technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.

  • 39%

    Chemistry

    Chemical composition, structure, and properties. How chemicals are made, used, mixed, and can change.

  • 37%

    Computers and electronics

    Circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.

  • 36%

    English language

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

  • 31%

    Physics

    The physical laws of matter, motion and energy, and how they interact through space and time.

  • 30%

    Education and training

    Curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.

  • 30%

    Public safety and security

    Use of equipment, rules and ideas to protect people, data, property, and institutions.

  • 27%

    Customer and personal service

    Understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.

  • 25%

    Administration and management

    Business principles involved in strategic planning, leadership, and coordinating people and resources.

  • 22%

    Psychology

    Human behaviour; differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; research methods; assessing and treating disorders.

  • 21%

    Transportation

    Moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road.

  • 21%

    Building and construction

    Materials, and methods used to construct or repair houses, buildings, or other structures like highways and roads.

  • 19%

    Communications and media

    Media production, communication, and dissemination. Includes written, spoken, and visual media.

  • 19%

    Clerical

    Word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office work.

  • 16%

    Foreign language

    Foreign (non-English) language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition and grammar, and pronunciation.

  • 11%

    Law and government

    How our laws and courts work. Government rules and regulations, and the political system.


Abilities

Workers use these physical and mental abilities..

  • 54%

    Control precision

    Quickly change the controls of a machine, car, truck or boat.

  • 54%

    Visualization

    Imagine how something will look after it is moved around or changed.

  • 52%

    Oral comprehension

    Listen to and understand what people say.

  • 52%

    Selective attention

    Pay attention to something without being distracted.

  • 50%

    Oral expression

    Communicate by speaking.

  • 48%

    Near vision

    See details that are up-close (within a few feet).

  • 48%

    Reaction time

    Quickly move your hand, finger, or foot when a sound, light, picture or something else appears.

  • 48%

    Auditory attention

    Pay attention to a certain sound when there are other distracting sounds.

  • 46%

    Arm-hand steadiness

    Keep your hand or arm steady.

  • 46%

    Problem spotting

    Notice when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong, even if you can't solve the problem.

  • 46%

    Finger dexterity

    Put together small parts with your fingers.

  • 46%

    Multilimb coordination

    Use your arms and/or legs at the same time while sitting, standing, or lying down.

  • 45%

    Manual dexterity

    Quickly move your hand to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.

  • 45%

    Deductive reasoning

    Use general rules to find answers or solve problems logically.

  • 45%

    Sorting or ordering

    Order or arrange things in a pattern or sequence (e.g., numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).

  • 43%

    Categorising

    Come up with different ways of grouping things.

  • 43%

    Hearing sensitivity

    Tell the difference between sounds.

  • 43%

    Inductive reasoning

    Use lots of detailed information to come up with answers or make general rules.

  • 43%

    Perceptual speed

    Use your eyes to quickly compare groups of letters, numbers, pictures, or other things.

  • 43%

    Speech recognition

    Identify and understand the speech of another person.


Activities

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

  • 80%

    Controlling equipment or machines

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

  • 80%

    Handling and moving objects

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

  • 56%

    Monitoring people, processes and things

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

  • 51%

    Planning and prioritising work

    Deciding on goals and putting together a detailed plan to get the work done.

  • 51%

    Keeping your knowledge up-to-date

    Keeping up-to-date with technology and new ideas.

  • 50%

    Assessing and evaluating things

    Working out the value, importance, or quality of things, services or people.

  • 50%

    Doing physically active work

    Use your arms, legs and whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling objects.

  • 50%

    Communicating within a team

    Giving information to co-workers by telephone, in writing, or in person.

  • 50%

    Making decisions and solving problems

    Using information to work out the best solution and solve problems.

  • 50%

    Checking for errors or defects

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

  • 49%

    Working with mechanical equipment

    Servicing, repairing, adjusting, and testing machines, devices, moving parts, and equipment.

  • 47%

    Collecting and organising information

    Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or checking information or data.

  • 45%

    Checking compliance with standards

    Deciding whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.

  • 44%

    Researching and investigating

    Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.

  • 44%

    Looking for changes over time

    Comparing objects, actions, or events. Looking for differences between them or changes over time.

  • 41%

    Documenting or recording information

    Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.

  • 41%

    Training and teaching others

    Understanding the needs of others, developing training programs, and teaching or instructing.

  • 36%

    Working with computers

    Using computers to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.

  • 35%

    Estimating amounts, costs and resources

    Working out sizes, distances, amounts, time, costs, resources, or materials needed for a task.

  • 33%

    Driving vehicles or equipment

    Running, manoeuvring, navigating, or driving things like forklifts, vehicles, aircraft, or water craft.


Interests and demands

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.

Interests

Interests are the style or type of work we prefer to do. All interest areas are shown below.

  • 100%

    Practical

    Practical, hands-on work. Often with plants and animals, or materials like wood, tools, and machinery.

  • 33%

    Administrative

    Following set procedures and routines. Working with numbers and details more than with ideas, usually following rules.

  • 29%

    Analytical

    Ideas and thinking. Searching for facts and figuring out problems in your head.

  • 24%

    Enterprising

    Starting up and carrying out projects. Leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes require risk taking and often deal with business.

  • 19%

    Helping

    Working with people. Helping or providing service to others.

  • 14%

    Creative

    Working with forms, designs and patterns. Often need self-expression and can be done without following rules.


Values

Work values are important to a person’s feeling of satisfaction. All six values are shown below.
  • 71%

    Support

    Supportive management that stands behind employees. Workers are treated fairly by their company, they are supported by management, and have supervisors who train them well.

  • 48%

    Relationships

    Serve and work with others. Workers usually get along well with each other, do things to help other people, and are rarely pressured to do things that go against their sense of right and wrong.

  • 40%

    Working conditions

    Job security and good working conditions. There is usually a steady flow of interesting work, and the pay and conditions are generally good.

  • 38%

    Independence

    Work alone and make decisions. Workers are able to try out their own ideas, make decisions on their own, and work with little or no supervision.

  • 29%

    Achievement

    Results oriented. Workers are able to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment.

  • 29%

    Recognition

    Advancement and the potential to lead. Workers are recognised for the work that they do, they may give directions and instructions to others, and they are looked up to in their company and their community.


Demands

The physical and social demands that workers face most often are shown below:
  • 100%

    Wear common protective or safety equipment

    Wear equipment like safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hard hats or life jackets.

  • 94%

    Dangerous equipment

    Work near dangerous equipment like saws, machinery with open moving parts, or moving traffic.

  • 93%

    Being exact or accurate

    Be very exact or highly accurate.

  • 92%

    Using your hands to handle, control, or feel

    Spend time using your hands to handle, control, or feel objects, tools or controls.

  • 89%

    Face-to-face discussions

    Talk with people face-to-face.

  • 89%

    Loud or uncomfortable sounds

    Be exposed to noises and sounds that are distracting or uncomfortable.

  • 86%

    Spend time standing

    Spend time standing at work.

  • 85%

    Health and safety of others

    Take responsibility for the health and safety of others.

  • 79%

    Time pressure

    Work to strict deadlines.

  • 78%

    Teamwork

    Work with people in a group or team.

  • 77%

    Pace of work set by equipment

    Pace of work depends on the speed of equipment or machinery.

  • 76%

    Making repetitive motions

    Spend time making repetitive motions.

  • 75%

    Frequent decision making

    Frequently make decisions that impact other people.

  • 75%

    Contact with people

    Have contact with people by telephone, face-to-face, or any other way.

  • 74%

    Walking and running

    Spend time walking and running.

  • 74%

    Minor burns, cuts, bites, or stings

    Be exposed to minor burns, cuts, bites, or stings.

  • 73%

    Unstructured work

    Have freedom to decide on tasks, priorities, and goals.

  • 73%

    Impact of decisions

    Make decisions that have a large impact on other people.

  • 72%

    Consequence of error

    Work where mistakes have serious consequences.

  • 70%

    Lead or coordinate a team

    Lead others to do work activities.

Occupational Information Network
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The skills and importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 51-4081.00 - Multiple Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic.


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