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Welding Jobs for The Future

Will welding jobs be a good career choice, given that automation and the introduction of robotic welding will replace a lot of the potential welding work in the foreseeable future? If so, what type of Welder skills will be desired? A conservative approach to answering this question is to make the assumption that any work that could be done more economically by automated methods will eventually be automated. This means that repetitive and highly predictable welding work will eventually be automated. We can already see this happening in pipeline welding and in factories such as automobile assembly lines.

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Human welders will however retain an advantage where conditions and welding work are unpredictable, and where a high level of hand-eye coordination is required. These conditions are typical under field welding conditions, especially maintenance welding activities.

Also keep in mind that most automated welding systems typical need some level of human involvement. This involvement will invariably change as the automated systems become more robotic in nature. Welders need to see these roles as “robot baby sitters” as being part of their jobs in the future.

Welder Performing a Qualification Test With Automated Welding Equipment

Welding Jobs Constantly Changing

This also means that Welders need to accept that their jobs will constantly change during their careers. New skills and knowledge will constantly be required of the Welder of the future. The thought that you can learn a trade for 3 or 4 years and then never having to learning anything significantly new, is a thing of the past. All workers of the future, including Welders, will have to constantly evolve in their skills and knowledge to fit in with the rapidly evolving job market and wider society. While this trend has been established in the last few decades, it will accelerate while the robot age takes hold.

Below we will look at typical welding jobs that are out there. When considering a career as a Welder, it would be very useful to understand the typical niche Welder jobs. This will not only help you to make a decision if being a Welder is for you, but also guide you to gain the necessary skills and experience for any specific Welder job you may be interested in. The list of welding jobs below is by no means exhaustive. As time goes by, we will be updating the list of niche areas and industries, but the list below is a good starting point.

Lives Will Depend on Your Workmanship

Please keep in mind that most of the Welding jobs we are considering on WelderDestiny are safety critical. That means that if you get it wrong, people could die, or significant financial or environmental consequences could result. This point is not raised to try to scare anybody off pursuing a career as a Welder, but rather to let you understand that this career is not just about earning a good living. It also requires you to have character traits, such as responsibility, that makes you appreciate that people's lives are in your hands for many years after you have completed laying down the weld metal.

As a Welder you will be part of a much bigger team. This team starts (from a technical perspective) with the designers. The job of the Welder, and the rest of the construction team for that matter, is to make sure that the intents of the designers are realized in the final structure. The more you understand the design drivers, the more valuable a member of the welding team you will be. This value will stand you in good stead when tackling the evolving job market, and looking for welding jobs.

We're Interested in Your Thoughts About Welding Jobs

Below we look at different Welder jobs. If you would like to contribute additional insights about Welder jobs, then please share your insights and experience by completing the contribution box at the bottom of this page. Your contribution will become a stand-alone web page, so feel free to make your contribution as detailed or brief as you like.

Some Niche Welding Jobs

Below we run through some typical niche welding jobs, but please understand that few welders start and finish their careers in a single niche area. Markets evolve, and economies are cyclical. This means that at times a Welder in the construction industry will do really well, and at other times it will be a Welder in the maintenance industry that does well. Most Welders will tend to move between industries and niche areas as these market cycles exert their pressure. My advice is that you make the most of whatever job you find yourself in, to gain new skills. This will become ever more important as the job of the Welder changes in the coming years. Also please understand that the list of niche Welding jobs below is by no means exhaustive, but it serves as a good starting point for reference.

Entry Level Jobs

Many current careers have a very clear entry path. You study for a qualification at university or college and then make a move into the workplace. A career as a Welder does however offer a number of different entry paths, including having absolutely no formal qualifications. In this respect I believe that Welding is actually a taste of things to come in many other skill-based jobs. Click here to get an idea of how to enter the workplace as a Welder, and get your foot on the first rung of the Welding career ladder.

Pipeline Welders

Pipeline Welders tend to command a premium in wages, hence it is a highly desired job. It is however a very demanding environment and not everyone is cut out to lead the life of a pipeline Welder. If you are interested in what it takes to be a pipeline Welder, then click here to get more information on the work demands, and the typical skill set required.

Construction Piping Welder

When constructing most industrial facilities, large quantities of safety critical high pressure piping need to be installed. Depending on the facility, this piping could be utilities such as water, compressed air or steam, or it could contain dangerous chemicals or flammable hydrocarbons. While most of the pipe spooling tends to be made in a workshop, it still needs to be installed on site. As a construction piping Welder, you could be working on a green-fields construction site, or you could be working under shut down conditions or even on-line conditions on an existing facility. Click here to get a run-down on a construction piping welding job.

Fabricator Welder

Typical fabricator Welder being considered here entails welding work in a workshop, performing general welding on pressure vessels, tanks and pressure piping. A large selection of structural work and other ad-hoc jobs will also be typical. Another element of this type of work is that there will often be a wide selection of materials that will need to be welded. Click here to gain a better understanding of the job as fabricator Welder, and the skill set required.

Aerospace Welder

Many people romanticize the aerospace industry, and would like to work in it. Obviously mistakes in this industry could be fatal, hence the quality of the workmanship is critical. The thing is that an aerospace welding job may in fact entail a lot of non-welding work, to ensure that acceptable welds are achieved. The welds are also typically smaller, requiring higher manual skill levels than in some of the other niche areas. Click here to get a feeling for what it takes to become an aerospace Welder.

Structural Welder

When considering structural welding jobs, we are talking about construction of large primary structures such as steel bridges, buildings and off-shore oil and gas installations. As structures become bigger and lighter, the stresses become higher. This means that today’s structural materials are more advanced than in the past, requiring more attention to details and higher levels of weld quality. Click here to get an overview of the typical skills required in structural welding jobs.

Oil Rig Welder

The term "oil rig Welder" can certainly be interpreted in a number of different ways. Here we are looking at welding jobs on off-shore oil and gas facilities. A Welder in the off-shore oil and gas sector needs more skills than just welding, because you will be operating a high temperature ignition source (a welding arc!) on an isolated facility that has the constant potential for the presence of explosive atmospheres. In this environment, the Welder's temperament is almost more important than their skill as a Welder. Click here to get an idea of the skills required for off-shore oil rig welding jobs.

Welder Curriculum Vitae (CV)

Irrespective of the type of welding jobs you want to pursue, you will need to compile a CV to gain access to a job. There are obviously a lot of details on-line regarding how to compile an effective CV. There are also many people offering the service of drawing up an effective CV. It is not the intention of WelderDestiny to compete with these sources of information. Rather, we want to make sure that irrespective of who draws up your CV, that the correct information is included. When an organization is looking to fill welding jobs, they typically have a very specific skill set and experience in mind. It is important that you include the right information for them to be able to decide if you have that skill set. Click here for a run-down of the information that you must make sure that you include in your CV when applying for welding jobs.

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Your Input Regarding Welding Jobs

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