Scrap metal operative


Scrap metal operative cut big sheets of metal scrap in order to prepare them for being used in a smelter.

Other titles

The following job titles also refer to scrap metal operative:

metal recycling operative
metal shredder operator
shredder operator
recyling operative
scrap metal processor
recycled metal operative
metal processing operative
smelter operative
scrap sorter

Minimum qualifications

No formal educational credential is generally required to work as a scrap metal operative.

ISCO skill level

ISCO skill level is defined as a function of the complexity and range of tasks and duties to be performed in an occupation. It is measured on a scale from 1 to 4, with 1 the lowest level and 4 the highest, by considering:

  • the nature of the work performed in an occupation in relation to the characteristic tasks and duties
  • the level of formal education required for competent performance of the tasks and duties involved and
  • the amount of informal on-the-job training and/or previous experience in a related occupation required for competent performance of these tasks and duties.

Scrap metal operative is a Skill level 2 occupation.

Scrap metal operative career path

Similar occupations

These occupations, although different, require a lot of knowledge and skills similar to scrap metal operative.

briquetting machine operator
production plant crane operator
heat treatment furnace operator
steam plant operator
pipeline maintenance worker

Long term prospects

These occupations require some skills and knowledge of scrap metal operative. They also require other skills and knowledge, but at a higher ISCO skill level, meaning these occupations are accessible from a position of scrap metal operative with a significant experience and/or extensive training.

hydroelectric plant operator
metal furnace operator
heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration engineering technician
wastewater treatment technician
electrical transmission system operator

Essential knowledge and skills

Essential knowledge

This knowledge should be acquired through learning to fulfill the role of scrap metal operative.

  • Attention to detail: Performs tasks conscientiously and effectively, taking into account all their aspects, no matter how detailed they are.
  • Hydraulics: The power transmission systems that use the force of flowing liquids to transmit power.

Essential skills and competences

These skills are necessary for the role of scrap metal operative.

  • Ensure compliance with environmental legislation: Monitor activities and perform tasks ensuring compliance with standards involving environmental protection and sustainability, and amend activities in the case of changes in environmental legislation. Ensure that the processes are compliant with environment regulations and best practices.
  • Resolve equipment malfunctions: Identify, report and repair equipment damage and malfunctions; communicate with field representatives and manufacturers to obtain repair and replacement components.
  • Operate metal fabricating machines: Set up and operate fabricating equipment to bend, cut and straighten pieces of metal.
  • Operate hydraulic machinery controls: use correctly the controls of specialized machinery by turning valves, handwheels, or rheostats to move and control flow of fuels, water, and dry or liquid binders to machines.
  • Apply various lifting techniques: Use different methods for lifting heavy objects using a crane.
  • Apply health and safety standards: Adhere to standards of hygiene and safety established by respective authorities.
  • Follow safety procedures when working at heights: Take necessary precautions and follow a set of measures that assess, prevent and tackle risks when working at a high distance from the ground. Prevent endangering people working under these structures and avoid falls from ladders, mobile scaffolding, fixed working bridges, single person lifts etc. since they may cause fatalities or major injuries.
  • Follow verbal instructions: Have the ability to follow spoken instructions received from colleagues. Strive to understand and clarify what is being requested.

Optional knowledge and skills

Optional knowledge

This knowledge is sometimes, but not always, required for the role of scrap metal operative. However, mastering this knowledge allows you to have more opportunities for career development.

  • Manufacturing processes: The steps required through which a material is transformed into a product, its development and full-scale manufacturing.
  • Physics: The natural science involving the study of matter, motion, energy, force and related notions.
  • Quality standards: The national and international requirements, specifications and guidelines to ensure that products, services and processes are of good quality and fit for purpose.
  • Types of metal manufacturing processes: Metal processes linked to the different types of metal, such as casting processes, heat treatment processes, repair processes and other metal manufacturing processes.

Optional skills and competences

These skills and competences are sometimes, but not always, required for the role of scrap metal operative. However, mastering these skills and competences allows you to have more opportunities for career development.

  • Follow written instructions: Follow written directions in order to perform a task or carry out a step-by-step procedure.
  • Provide advice to technicians: Offer help and advice to service technicians in case of machine malfunctions and other repair tasks.
  • Use shaping machinery: Use various types of welding and cutting tools to shape and customize surfaces and materials.
  • Cut metal products: Operate cutting and measuring instruments in order to cut/shape pieces of metal into given dimensions.
  • Perform minor repairs to equipment: Conduct routine maintenance on equipment. Recognise and identify minor defects in equipment and make repairs if appropriate.
  • Maximise efficiency of crane operations: Minimise crane operations, additional crane movements, or ‘re-stows’ by effectively planning the organisation of containers in vessels. Analyse delivery schedules and movements for maximum efficiency, minimum cost, and smooth operations.
  • Guide cranes: Guide a crane operator in operating the crane. Stay in contact with the operator visually, vocally, or using communication equipment to make sure the crane operation is completed in a safe and efficient manner.

ISCO group and title

7223 – Metal working machine tool setters and operators

  1. Scrap metal operative – ESCO
Last updated on September 21, 2022

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