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Sheet Metal Workers

What they do?

Sheet metal workers perform some or all of the following duties:

A. Inspect product quality and installation to ensure conformance to specifications.

B. Sheet metal workers may specialize in on-site installation or shop manufacture of sheet metal products, or servicing and maintenance of installed equipment and systems.

C. Read engineering and architectural drawings, sketches and work specifications to be performed, and lay out, measure and mark sheet metal according to drawings or templates

D. Develop patterns for sheet metal using computer-assisted design and drafting (CAD) software package

E. Operate light metalworking machines such as shears, brakes, punches, and drill presses, including computer numerical control (CNC) equipment to cut, bend, punch, drill, shape or straighten sheet metal

F. Operate computerized laser or plasma cutting equipment to cut sheet metal

G. Install and use rigging and hoisting equipment

Where they find work?

1. Construction - 51.0%
2. Fabricated metal product manufacturing - 19.0%
3. Machinery manufacturing - 7.0%
4. Wholesale trade - 4.0%
5. Aerospace product and parts manufacturing - 4.0%

What education do I need?

1. Completion of secondary school is usually required.

2. Completion of a three to five year apprenticeship program or A combination of over four years of work experience in the trade and some high school, college or industry courses in sheet metal working is usually required to be eligible for trade certification.

3. Trade certification is compulsory in Quebec, Ontario, Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia and available, but voluntary, in all other provinces and the territories.

4. Red Seal, an interprovincial trade certification, is also available to qualified sheet metal workers.

5. Most recent entrants have a trade/vocational certificate and almost 3 in 10 have a community college diploma.

High School Subject that will help:

1. Math
2. Physics
3. Drafting
4. Industry Arts (Metalworking)

What can you expect to make:

The average hourly wages for Sheet Metal Workers is $20.58/HR, which is close to the average for occupations in the trades, transport and equipment operators sector and close to the average for all technical, professional, and skilled occupations. These wages grew at an average rate from 2002 to 2004.

Average Wage

Sheet Metal Workers wages

Expected Wage by Age

Sheet Metal Workers Wage By Age


7% of Sheet Metal Workers are unemployed. This rate is close to the average for technical, professional, and skilled occupations.


Sheet Metal Workers Unemployment

Trends in Unemployment

Sheet Metal Workers Trends in Unemployment

Current Job Outlook:

The job outlook for Sheet Metal Workers is considered Average because:

1. Employment grew at an above-average rate.

2. Hourly wages ($20.58) are close to the average ($18.07), and the rate of wage growth is close to the average.

3. The unemployment rate (7%) is close to the 2004 average (7%).

Future Job Prospects:

Your job outlook will continue to be Average because:

1. The employment growth rate will likely be close to the average.

2. Although the retirement rate will likely be average, the number of retiring workers should contribute to job openings.

3. The number of job seekers will likely match the number of job openings.

Highest Concetration:

The highest concentrations are found in Alberta and Prince Edward Island while the lowest concentrations are in New Brunswick and Newfoundland.

Unionization Rate:

The unionization rate (60%) is above the average (32%) for all occupations.

Useful Experience:

1. Construction/manufacturing

2. Diagrams/drawings

3. Physical work

Part Time Workers

Sheet Metal Workers Part Time Workers

Part time workers:

2% of Sheet Metal Workers are employed only on a part-time basis. There were 18,100 workers employed in these occupations in 2004, an increase of 14% since 1997.

Age Demographics

Sheet Metal Workers Age Demographics

Age Demographics:

The retirement rate to 2009 will likely be average reflecting the age/retirement structure of the occupation.

Self Employed

Sheet Metal Workers Self Employed

Self Employed:

Roughly 4% of Sheet Metal Workers are self-employed. This is considered Average for the industry as a whole.

Men vs Women

Sheet Metal Workers Men vs Women

Men vs Women:

% of the individuals employed as Sheet Metal Workers are women. Compared to other industries, this is .