Plastics Worker
Careers New Zealand
New Zealand
6d ago

Pay for plastics workers varies depending on experience :

  • Apprentices usually earn between the minimum training wage and the minimum wage an hour.
  • Plastic workers with one to four years' experience can earn $16 to $18 an hour.
  • Plastics workers with four or more years' experience can earn up to $23 an hour.
  • Source : Competenz, 2017; Census, 2013.

    This information is a guide only. )

    What you will do

    Plastics workers may do some or all of the following :

  • build full-size models of plastic products
  • create moulds for plastic products
  • apply materials such as resins or fiberglass to moulds
  • fit moulds into machines, and remove them when a production run has finished
  • separate, trim and shape the final products
  • maintain and repair moulds
  • fix basic mechanical and process problems
  • check products for defects
  • pack, label and weigh products.
  • Skills and knowledge

    Plastics workers need to have knowledge of :

  • how to operate tools and machinery
  • processes used to make plastic products, and the ability to diagnose production problems
  • product standards and safety regulations
  • different chemicals, compounds and metals
  • heats and speeds needed for mechanical tasks such as welding.
  • Plastics workers :

  • either work shifts or regular business hours. They may be required to work longer hours or weekends to meet deadlines
  • work in factories, processing plants and workshops
  • may work in smelly, noisy and dusty conditions. They may also work with toxic materials, which require the use of safety equipment
  • may travel locally to clients' workplaces to install or repair products.
  • Entry requirements

    To become a plastics worker you need to complete an apprenticeship and gain a New Zealand Certificate in Manufacturing - Plastics (Level 2).

    Secondary education

    NCEA Level 1 is recommended. Useful subjects include chemistry, construction and mechanical technologies, and processing technologies.

    Personal requirements

    Plastics workers need to be :

  • skilled in interpreting plans and drawings
  • good at problem-solving
  • accurate and methodical
  • able to follow instructions
  • able to work independently and in a team
  • responsible and safety-conscious.
  • Useful experience

    Useful experience includes :

  • work with basic engineering equipment such as welders, lathes and power tools
  • any work in the plastics, rubber or composites industry
  • work as a mechanical engineer
  • work in other factory jobs, particularly shift work.
  • Physical requirements

    Plastics technicians need to be fit and healthy as the job involves some lifting, and they spend long periods on their feet.

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