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Occupational Profile

Binding and Finishing Machine Operator

Binding and finishing machine operators set up and operate machines and equipment that turn large sheets of paper from the printing press into finished print materials such as books, brochures and presentation folders.

  • Avg. Salary $42,043.00
  • Avg. Wage $20.87
  • Minimum Education Varies
  • Outlook N/A
  • In Demand Lower
Also Known As

Book Binder, Factory Worker, Finishing Machine Operator, Production Worker

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

37%
37%
Average Wage
Starting
Overall
Top
  • Certification Not Regulated
  • Strength Required Lift up to 20 kg
NOC & Interest Codes
The Binding and Finishing Machine Operator is part of the following larger National Occupational Classification (NOC).
Binding and Finishing Machine Operators
NOC code: 9473.1
OBJECTIVE

Interest in controlling computerized units to start, stop and regulate machines and equipment

METHODICAL

Interest in copying to perform work according to production specifications

innovative

Interest in making adjustments to machines and equipment

Reading Interest Codes
A Quick Guide

The interest code helps you figure out if you’d like to work in a particular occupation. 
It’s based on the Canadian Work Preference Inventory (CWPI), which measures 5 occupational interests: Directive, Innovative, Methodical, Objective and Social.

Each set of 3 interest codes is listed in order of importance.

A code in capital letters means it’s a strong fit for the occupation.

A code in all lowercase letters means the fit is weaker.

Learn More

Specialty Finishing Equipment Operators
NOC code: 9473.2
OBJECTIVE

Interest in controlling computerized units to start, stop and regulate machines and equipment throughout various finishing operations

METHODICAL

Interest in copying to perform work according to production specifications

innovative

Interest in applying decorations and lettering to bound books, and in making adjustments to machines and equipment

Reading Interest Codes
A Quick Guide

The interest code helps you figure out if you’d like to work in a particular occupation. 
It’s based on the Canadian Work Preference Inventory (CWPI), which measures 5 occupational interests: Directive, Innovative, Methodical, Objective and Social.

Each set of 3 interest codes is listed in order of importance.

A code in capital letters means it’s a strong fit for the occupation.

A code in all lowercase letters means the fit is weaker.

Learn More

Duties
Updated May 06, 2016

Binding and finishing machine operators run specialized equipment and machines that collate, cut, fold, gather, glue, stitch and drill printed material. Their duties vary depending on the machine but, in general, binding and finishing machine operators:

  • review work orders
  • set up, adjust and operate machines and equipment
  • input instructions and monitor the operation of computerized  machines and equipment
  • troubleshoot problems and make adjustments as required
  • perform routine maintenance.

Binding and finishing machine operators may operate a wide variety of machines including ones that:

  • fold, cut or collate pages
  • drill holes in pages
  • die cut pages
  • insert materials into cerlox (plastic comb binding), wire or adhesive bindings
  • apply glue on the ends of note pads
  • emboss, imprint or metal foil materials
  • wire stitch collated materials
  • laminate materials
  • package printed materials.
Working Conditions
Updated May 06, 2016

Binding and finishing machine operators work in large industrial plants or, in smaller companies, in industrial bays. Shift work may be required and working overtime to meet print deadlines is common.

Binding and finishing machine operators often stand for long periods and do a considerable amount of bending and reaching. They may be required to lift heavy packages of paper.Workplace hazards include moving machinery, handling chemicals and exposure to fumes from solvents. They must follow standard safety practices and be knowledgeable about occupational health and safety legislation.

  • Strength Required Lift up to 20 kg
Skills & Abilities
Updated May 06, 2016

Binding and finishing machine operators need the following characteristics:

  • good hand-eye co-ordination and full body mobility
  • normal hearing and vision
  • the ability to measure and calculate measurements accurately
  • ability to pay attention while performing repetitive tasks
  • mechanical ability
  • the ability to work safely and efficiently under the pressure of deadlines.

They should enjoy working with computerized and mechanical equipment, following routines, and performing set tasks.

Educational Requirements
Updated May 06, 2016

Printing and publishing is an evolving industry and machine operators must be prepared to keep learning new skills. More and more of the equipment they use is computer controlled.

There are no standard education requirements for binding and finishing machine operators. However, employers generally prefer to hire graduates of related post-secondary programs or high school graduates who have experience operating machines or equipment. A security clearance may be required if the operator will be working with sensitive materials.Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) training is an asset.

For a broad list of programs and courses that may be related to this occupation try searching using keywords.

Employment & Advancement
Updated May 06, 2016

Binding and finishing machine operators are employed by:

  • trade binderies
  • commercial printing companies
  • large organizations that have in-house printing, binding and finishing departments
  • newspapers
  • magazines
  • publishing companies.

Many binderies have a small core staff and hire extra staff on a temporary basis when needed to meet contract deadlines. 

Newly hired machine operators usually are trained on simpler or lighter equipment. As they gain experience, they are trained on more complex equipment. Machine operators who have experience running a variety of machines may become supervisors. 

In Alberta, 94% of people employed as binding and finishing machine operators work in the Manufacturing (PDF) industry.

The employment outlook in this occupation will be influenced by a wide variety of factors including:

  • trends and events affecting overall employment in the Manufacturing industry (for example, the growth of electronic information distribution is expected to have a negative effect on binderies) 
  • location in Alberta
  • employment turnover (work opportunities generated by people leaving existing positions)
  • occupational growth (work opportunities resulting from the creation of new positions that never existed before)
  • size of the occupation.

Employment turnover is expected to increase as members of the baby boom generation retire over the next few years.

Wage & Salary
Updated May 06, 2016

Binding and finishing machine operators
NOC code: 9473

Survey Methodology

Survey Analysis

Overall Wage Details
Average Wage
Average Salary
Hours Per Week

Hourly Wage
For full-time and part-time employees
  • Low
  • High
  • Average
  • Median
Starting
Overall
Top
Wages* Low (5th percentile) High (95th percentile) Average Median
Starting $12.00 $21.00 $16.59 $15.50
Overall $15.00 $25.50 $20.87 $20.00
Top $16.00 $30.00 $23.42 $25.00

Swipe left and right to view all data. Scroll left and right to view all data.

* All wage estimates are hourly except where otherwise indicated. Wages and salaries do not include overtime hours, tips, benefits, profit shares, bonuses (unrelated to production) and other forms of compensation.

B: Good Reliability
Data Reliability Code Definition

Good Reliability, represents a CV of between 6.01% and 15.00% and/or fewer than 30 survey observations and/or if survey observations represent less than 50% of all estimated employment for the occupation.


Industry Information
Manufacturing
ALBERTA, ALL INDUSTRIES

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

37%
37%

Recruiting Employers that Experienced Hiring Difficulties

10%
10%

Employers with Unfilled Vacancies of over 4 Months

N/A

2015 Vacancy Rate

N/A
Related High School Subjects
  • English Language Arts
Related Post-Secondary Field of Study
  • Trades, Industrial and Related Training
Other Sources of Information
Updated May 06, 2016

Canadian Printing Industries Sector Council (CPISC) website: www.cpisc-csic.ca 

Printing and Graphics Industries Association of Alberta (PGIA) website: www.pgia.ca

For more information on career planning, education and jobs, visit the Alberta Learning Information Service (ALIS) website, call the Alberta Career Information Hotline toll-free at 1-800-661-3753 or 780-422-4266 in Edmonton, or visit an Alberta Works Centre near you.

Updated Mar 08, 2016. The information contained in this profile is current as of the dates shown. Salary, employment outlook and educational program information may change without notice. It is advised that you confirm this information before making any career decisions.

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