Are you looking for a career that is challenging, fun, and lucrative? If so, becoming a heavy machine operator might be the way to go! From working on construction sites to operating municipal equipment, there is an endless demand for certified operators, and you could get to work on some of the most awesome equipment ever made.
The best way to proceed is to attend a great heavy equipment operator training school in Ontario, but that’s only part of the process. Here’s everything you need to do to make the jump into the heavy equipment industry.
- Have a GED or HS Diploma
High School-equivalent education is necessary to get your certifications and become employed, although typically grades don’t matter much. There’s also no need for college if you just want to operate machines, although some business school could help if you’re looking towards a management career track or running your own landscaping or construction company.
- Get licensed and certified
Generally speaking, to operate heavy working machines like steamrollers, cranes, fire engines, etc, you will need both an AZ or DZ-class commercial driver’s license (CDL) as well as specific certifications for the type(s) of machine you plan to operate. Individual requirements vary, depending on the danger and difficulty of operating the machinery involved. For example, you’ll face more difficult requirements to operate a crane, versus driving a dump truck.
This is a multi-stage process. First you get training at a certified heavy equipment operators school, then you must pass both written and hands-on tests to qualify for your own licenses and certifications.
- Update your resume
You’ll typically have to do some job searching after you graduate, so you want to polish up your resume to look as good as possible. This is another reason you want to attend the best training school possible – employers will recognize the top schools when you apply.
Of course, some schools also host industry employers looking to recruit. If you excel at a good school, you might be able to walk straight into a job after graduation.
- Keep training and learning
The heavy equipment industry is constantly updating, and you want to keep up. Read industry blogs and newsletters and keep an eye out for opportunities to expand your collection of licenses/certifications. The more machines you’re qualified to operate, the better your year-round employment outlook will be.