Textile & Footwear Production Machine Operators
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.
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
- 711711 Footwear Production Machine Operators
- 711712 Hide and Skin Processing Machine Operators
- 711713 Knitting Machine Operators
- 711714 Textile Dyeing and Finishing Machine Operators
- 711715 Weaving Machine Operators
- 711716 Yarn Carding and Spinning Machine Operators
- 711799 Other Textile and Footwear Production Machine Operators
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 3,300 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.
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 82% of people employed as Textile & Footwear Production Machine Operators work full-time hours, in all their jobs combined. This is 16 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).
Median hourly earnings are $25, this is lower than 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. Full-time median earnings and median hourly earnings: ABS, Survey of Employee Earnings and Hours, May 2021. Compared to all jobs median.
Employment across Australia
Employment by State and Territory (% Share)
|State||Textile & Footwear Production Machine Operators||All Jobs Average|
Around 51% of Textile & Footwear Production Machine Operators live outside of capital cities, compared with the all jobs average of 38%.
Victoria has a large share of employment relative to its population size.
The regions with the largest share of workers are:
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 Textile and Footwear Production Machine Operators is 48 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 33% of the workforce. This is 15 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||Textile & Footwear Production Machine Operators||All Jobs Average|
|65 and Over||5.1||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
Formal qualifications are not usually required to work as a Textile or Footwear Production Machine Operator.
- My Skills to compare Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses, providers and student outcomes.
- AAPathways website to explore Textiles, Clothing & Footwear VET training pathways.
Highest Level of Education (% Share)
|Type of Qualification||Textile & Footwear Production Machine Operators||All Jobs Average|
|Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate||0.3||10.1|
|Year 10 and below||35.1||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 Textile & Footwear Production Machine Operators who are hardworking, can work well with others and are reliable.
Skills can be improved through training or experience.
Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
Keeping track of how well work is progressing so you can make changes or improvements.
41%Operation and control
Controlling equipment or systems.
Listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions.
Thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem.
36%Quality control analysis
Doing tests and checking products, services, or processes to make sure they are working properly.
Talking to others.
Maintaining equipment and deciding what maintenance will be needed in the future.
34%Judgment and decision making
Figuring out the pros and cons of different options and choosing the best one.
Figuring out why a machine or system went wrong and working out what to do about it.
32%Coordination with others
Being adaptable and coordinating work with other people.
Reading work related information.
Managing your own and other peoples' time to get work done.
Teaching people how to do something.
29%Complex problem solving
Noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it.
Understanding why people react the way they do.
Writing things for co-workers or customers.
Deciding on the kind of tools and equipment needed to do a job.
Fixing machines or systems.
Looking for ways to help people.
These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.
37%Production and processing
Raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and ways of making and distributing goods.
36%Administration and management
Business principles involved in strategic planning, leadership, and coordinating people and resources.
English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office work.
31%Public safety and security
Use of equipment, rules and ideas to protect people, data, property, and institutions.
28%Education and training
Curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
Machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
22%Economics and accounting
Economics and accounting, the financial markets, banking and checking and reporting of financial data.
20%Customer and personal service
Understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.
Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.
19%Sales and marketing
Showing, promoting, and selling including marketing strategy, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
18%Personnel and human resources
Recruiting and training people, managing pay and other entitlements (like sick leave), and negotiating pay and conditions.
Moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road.
13%Computers and electronics
Circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
12%Engineering and technology
Use engineering, science and technology to design and produce goods and services.
Chemical composition, structure, and properties. How chemicals are made, used, mixed, and can change.
The physical laws of matter, motion and energy, and how they interact through space and time.
Human behaviour; differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; research methods; assessing and treating disorders.
8%Law and government
How our laws and courts work. Government rules and regulations, and the political system.
Design techniques, tools, and principles used to make detailed technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
Workers use these physical and mental abilities..
Keep your hand or arm steady.
Quickly change the controls of a machine, car, truck or boat.
Put together small parts with your fingers.
Quickly move your hand to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
Listen to and understand what people say.
Communicate by speaking.
Bend, stretch, twist, or reach with your body, arms, and/or legs.
Quickly move your hand, finger, or foot when a sound, light, picture or something else appears.
See details that are up-close (within a few feet).
Use your arms and/or legs at the same time while sitting, standing, or lying down.
Use your abdominal and lower back muscles a number of times without 'giving out' or fatiguing.
Pay attention to a certain sound when there are other distracting sounds.
Notice differences between colours, including shades of colour and brightness.
Use your eyes to quickly compare groups of letters, numbers, pictures, or other things.
Notice when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong, even if you can't solve the problem.
Come up with different ways of grouping things.
39%Sorting or ordering
Order or arrange things in a pattern or sequence (e.g., numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
Pay attention to something without being distracted.
Tell the difference between sounds.
Speak clearly so others can understand you.
These are kinds of activities workers regularly do in this job.
76%Handling and moving objects
Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, moving and manipulating objects.
69%Controlling equipment or machines
Operating machines or processes either directly or using controls (not including computers or vehicles).
52%Doing physically active work
Use your arms, legs and whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling objects.
52%Keeping your knowledge up-to-date
Keeping up-to-date with technology and new ideas.
51%Checking for errors or defects
Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials for errors, problems or defects.
50%Communicating within a team
Giving information to co-workers by telephone, in writing, or in person.
49%Monitoring people, processes and things
Checking objects, actions, or events, and keeping an eye out for problems.
48%Looking for changes over time
Comparing objects, actions, or events. Looking for differences between them or changes over time.
42%Working with mechanical equipment
Servicing, repairing, adjusting, and testing machines, devices, moving parts, and equipment.
38%Collecting and organising information
Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or checking information or data.
38%Assessing and evaluating things
Working out the value, importance, or quality of things, services or people.
36%Building good relationships
Building good working relationships and keeping them over time.
35%Researching and investigating
Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.
30%Estimating amounts, costs and resources
Working out sizes, distances, amounts, time, costs, resources, or materials needed for a task.
29%Training and teaching others
Understanding the needs of others, developing training programs, and teaching or instructing.
28%Planning and prioritising work
Deciding on goals and putting together a detailed plan to get the work done.
26%Documenting or recording information
Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
25%Checking compliance with standards
Deciding whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
24%Coaching and developing others
Working out the needs of others and coaching, mentoring, or helping them to improve.
24%Making decisions and solving problems
Using information to work out the best solution and solve problems.
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.
Starting up and carrying out projects. Leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes require risk taking and often deal with business.
Working with forms, designs and patterns. Often need self-expression and can be done without following rules.
Ideas and thinking. Searching for facts and figuring out problems in your head.
Working with people. Helping or providing service to others.
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.
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.
Job security and good working conditions. There is usually a steady flow of interesting work, and the pay and conditions are generally good.
Results oriented. Workers are able to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment.
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.
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.
96%Using your hands to handle, control, or feel
Spend time using your hands to handle, control, or feel objects, tools or controls.
95%Indoors, heat controlled
Work indoors with access to heating or cooling.
95%Spend time standing
Spend time standing at work.
91%Walking and running
Spend time walking and running.
87%Loud or uncomfortable sounds
Be exposed to noises and sounds that are distracting or uncomfortable.
86%Exposure to contaminants
Be exposed to pollutants, gases, dust or odours.
86%Pace of work set by equipment
Pace of work depends on the speed of equipment or machinery.
83%Wear common protective or safety equipment
Wear equipment like safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hard hats or life jackets.
79%Bending or twisting your body
Spend time bending or twisting your body.
73%Making repetitive motions
Spend time making repetitive motions.
73%Being exact or accurate
Be very exact or highly accurate.
Talk with people face-to-face.
Work near dangerous equipment like saws, machinery with open moving parts, or moving traffic.
64%Repeating same tasks
Repeat the same tasks or activities (e.g., key entry) over and over, without stopping.
63%Contact with people
Have contact with people by telephone, face-to-face, or any other way.
Work with people in a group or team.
Work to strict deadlines.
58%Health and safety of others
Take responsibility for the health and safety of others.
58%Angry or unpleasant people
Deal with unpleasant, angry, or rude people.
57%Cramped work space
Work in an awkward position or in cramped work spaces.
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, 51-6063.00 - Textile Knitting and Weaving Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders.