Precision Metal Trades Workers
Precision Metal Trades Workers fabricate, assemble, maintain and repair metal precision instruments.
assembling parts and subassemblies of precision instruments, locks, timepieces and firearms
dismantling precision instruments, locks, timepieces and firearms, repairing and replacing defective parts, and reassembling articles using hand and power tools and specially designed machines
inscribing letters, figures and designs on surfaces of jewellery, trophies and other ornamental items
installing security systems, changing tumblers in locks, changing locks, cutting keys and opening locks by manipulation
calibrating precision instruments using standard weights and measures, jigs and fixtures, and hand tools to adjust and align parts and small balancing weights
making blades for circular, band and other power saws and repairing, setting and sharpening blades for hand and power saws
testing circuits in electronic timepieces
may estimate costs and prepare quotes for repairs
Vocational Education and Training (VET)
Informal or on-the-job
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 grow moderately
- is likely to reach 6,200 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.
Number of Workers
Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, ABS seasonally adjusted data to November 2021 and Jobs and Skills Australia Employment Projections to 2026.
Earnings and hours
Around 84% of people employed as Precision Metal Trades Workers work full-time hours, in all their jobs combined. This is 18 percentage points above the all jobs average (66%).
Full-time workers work an average of 43 hours per week in their main job. This is similar to the all jobs average (44 hours per week).
More than a third of workers regularly work overtime or extra hours (either paid or unpaid).
Median full-time earnings are $1,528 per week, this is lower than the all jobs median ($1,593):
- 3 in 4 workers earn more than $1,502
- 1 in 4 earn more than $1,986
Median hourly earnings are $40, this is similar to the all jobs median ($41 per hour).
Sources: Full-time share and full-time hours: ABS, 2016 Census, customised report. Compared to the all jobs average. Overtime hours: ABS, Characteristics of Employment, 2021. Full-time median earnings and median hourly earnings: ABS, Survey of Employee Earnings and Hours, May 2021. Compared to all jobs median.
Weekly Earnings (Before Tax)
|Earnings||Precision Metal Trades Workers||All Jobs Average|
Source: Based on ABS Survey of Employee Earnings and Hours, May 2021, Customised Report. Median weekly total cash earnings for full-time non-managerial employees paid at the adult rate. Earnings are before tax and include amounts salary sacrificed. 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.
Precision Metal Trades Workers work in industries like:
Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2021.
Employment across Australia
Employment by State and Territory (% Share)
|State||Precision Metal Trades Workers||All Jobs Average|
Around 62% of Precision Metal Trades Workers live in capital cities, similar to the all jobs average of 62%.
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.
Age and gender
The median age of Precision Metal Trades Workers is 43 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 7% of the workforce. This is 41 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)
|Age Bracket||Precision Metal Trades Workers||All Jobs Average|
|65 and Over||6.7||4.2|
Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Education, training and experience
A certificate III in engineering (mechanical trade) is usually needed to work as a Precision Metal Trades Worker.
- My Skills to compare Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses, providers and student outcomes.
- AAPathways website to explore Manufacturing and Metal and Engineering VET training pathways.
Highest Level of Education (% Share)
|Type of Qualification||Precision Metal Trades Workers||All Jobs Average|
|Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate||2.2||10.1|
|Year 10 and below||8.4||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 Precision Metal Trades Workers who are reliable, work well in a team and have a strong work ethic.
Skills can be improved through training or experience.
Fixing machines or systems.
Figuring out why a machine or system went wrong and working out what to do about it.
Maintaining equipment and deciding what maintenance will be needed in the future.
Reading work related information.
Thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem.
48%Quality control analysis
Doing tests and checking products, services, or processes to make sure they are working properly.
Being able to use what you have learnt to solve problems now and again in the future.
Listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions.
45%Complex problem solving
Noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it.
Deciding on the kind of tools and equipment needed to do a job.
43%Judgment and decision making
Figuring out the pros and cons of different options and choosing the best one.
Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
Talking to others.
Managing your own and other peoples' time to get work done.
Writing things for co-workers or customers.
Keeping track of how well work is progressing so you can make changes or improvements.
Understanding why people react the way they do.
Using maths to solve problems.
Figuring out the best way to teach or learn something new.
Looking for ways to help people.
These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.
Machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
61%Computers and electronics
Circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
59%Customer and personal service
Understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.
52%Education and training
Curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
46%Engineering and technology
Use engineering, science and technology to design and produce goods and services.
44%Sales and marketing
Showing, promoting, and selling including marketing strategy, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.
Word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office work.
37%Personnel and human resources
Recruiting and training people, managing pay and other entitlements (like sick leave), and negotiating pay and conditions.
37%Production and processing
Raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and ways of making and distributing goods.
Design techniques, tools, and principles used to make detailed technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
34%Administration and management
Business principles involved in strategic planning, leadership, and coordinating people and resources.
28%Communications and media
Media production, communication, and dissemination. Includes written, spoken, and visual media.
25%Economics and accounting
Economics and accounting, the financial markets, banking and checking and reporting of financial data.
Chemical composition, structure, and properties. How chemicals are made, used, mixed, and can change.
Human behaviour; differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; research methods; assessing and treating disorders.
22%Law and government
How our laws and courts work. Government rules and regulations, and the political system.
Transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.
20%Public safety and security
Use of equipment, rules and ideas to protect people, data, property, and institutions.
Workers use these physical and mental abilities..
See details that are up-close (within a few feet).
Put together small parts with your fingers.
Imagine how something will look after it is moved around or changed.
Keep your hand or arm steady.
See details that are far away.
Notice when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong, even if you can't solve the problem.
Read and understand written information.
Listen to and understand what people say.
48%Sorting or ordering
Order or arrange things in a pattern or sequence (e.g., numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
Quickly move your hand to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
Notice differences between colours, including shades of colour and brightness.
Quickly change the controls of a machine, car, truck or boat.
Use general rules to find answers or solve problems logically.
Use lots of detailed information to come up with answers or make general rules.
Communicate by speaking.
Come up with different ways of grouping things.
Speak clearly so others can understand you.
Use your eyes to quickly compare groups of letters, numbers, pictures, or other things.
Identify and understand the speech of another person.
Pay attention to something without being distracted.
These are kinds of activities workers regularly do in this job.
66%Working with electronic equipment
Servicing, repairing, calibrating, regulating, fine-tuning, or testing electronic devices and equipment.
59%Keeping your knowledge up-to-date
Keeping up-to-date with technology and new ideas.
Using your own ideas for developing, designing, or creating something new.
49%Monitoring people, processes and things
Checking objects, actions, or events, and keeping an eye out for problems.
49%Working with mechanical equipment
Servicing, repairing, adjusting, and testing machines, devices, moving parts, and equipment.
48%Planning and prioritising work
Deciding on goals and putting together a detailed plan to get the work done.
47%Making decisions and solving problems
Using information to work out the best solution and solve problems.
45%Building good relationships
Building good working relationships and keeping them over time.
45%Handling and moving objects
Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, moving and manipulating objects.
45%Assessing and evaluating things
Working out the value, importance, or quality of things, services or people.
43%Working with computers
Using computers to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
43%Looking for changes over time
Comparing objects, actions, or events. Looking for differences between them or changes over time.
42%Checking for errors or defects
Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials for errors, problems or defects.
42%Researching and investigating
Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.
37%Estimating amounts, costs and resources
Working out sizes, distances, amounts, time, costs, resources, or materials needed for a task.
37%Communicating within a team
Giving information to co-workers by telephone, in writing, or in person.
36%Making sense of information and ideas
Looking at, working with, and understanding data or information.
36%Working with the public
Greeting or serving customers, clients or guests, and public speaking or performing.
32%Collecting and organising information
Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or checking information or data.
32%Communicating with the public
Giving information to the public, business or government by telephone, in writing, or in person.
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 are the style or type of work we prefer to do. All interest areas are shown below.
Practical, hands-on work. Often with plants and animals, or materials like wood, tools, and machinery.
Following set procedures and routines. Working with numbers and details more than with ideas, usually following rules.
Ideas and thinking. Searching for facts and figuring out problems in your head.
Working with forms, designs and patterns. Often need self-expression and can be done without following rules.
Starting up and carrying out projects. Leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes require risk taking and often deal with business.
Working with people. Helping or providing service to others.
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.
Results oriented. Workers are able to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment.
Job security and good working conditions. There is usually a steady flow of interesting work, and the pay and conditions are generally good.
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.
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.
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.
95%Using your hands to handle, control, or feel
Spend time using your hands to handle, control, or feel objects, tools or controls.
93%Being exact or accurate
Be very exact or highly accurate.
92%Indoors, heat controlled
Work indoors with access to heating or cooling.
88%Freedom to make decisions
Have freedom to make decision on your own.
Talk with people face-to-face.
Have freedom to decide on tasks, priorities, and goals.
83%Spend time sitting
Spend time sitting at work.
Use electronic mail.
Talk on the telephone.
Work to strict deadlines.
69%Contact with people
Have contact with people by telephone, face-to-face, or any other way.
67%Frequent decision making
Frequently make decisions that impact other people.
67%Making repetitive motions
Spend time making repetitive motions.
65%Consequence of error
Work where mistakes have serious consequences.
63%Exposure to contaminants
Be exposed to pollutants, gases, dust or odours.
63%Contact with the public
Work with customers or the public.
61%Impact of decisions
Make decisions that have a large impact on other people.
59%Repeating same tasks
Repeat the same tasks or activities (e.g., key entry) over and over, without stopping.
58%Letters and memos
Write letters and memos.
Work with people in a group or team.
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, 49-9061.00 - Camera and Photographic Equipment Repairers.
Links and downloads
Research and reports
The Skills Priority List provides a current labour market rating and a future demand rating for nearly 800 occupations nationally. Current labour market ratings are available for occupations at a state and territory level.
Occupation profiles data are available for download.
The Employment Projections are available for download.