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Printing Press Operator

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What is a Printing Press Operator?

Printing Press Operator Job Description Set up and operate digital, letterpress, lithographic, flexographic, gravure, or other printing machines. Includes short-run offset printing presses.

Life As a Printing Press Operator: What Do They Do?

  • Input production job settings into workstation terminals that control automated printing systems.
  • Download completed jobs to archive media so that questions can be answered or jobs replicated.
  • Clean ink fountains, plates, or printing unit cylinders when press runs are completed.
  • Collect and inspect random samples during print runs to identify any necessary adjustments.
  • Maintain time or production records.
  • Download or scan files to be printed, using printing production software.

What Every Printing Press Operator Should Know

These are the skills Printing Press Operators say are the most useful in their careers:

Quality Control Analysis: Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.

Operation Monitoring: Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Monitoring: Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Other Printing Press Operator Job Titles

  • Stereotyper
  • Printer Operator
  • Stereotype Caster
  • Embossograph Operator
  • Stereotype Molder

Is There Job Demand for Printing Press Operators?

In 2016, there was an estimated number of 178,700 jobs in the United States for Printing Press Operator. There is little to no growth in job opportunities for Printing Press Operator. There will be an estimated 15,800 positions for Printing Press Operator per year.

Forecasted Number of Jobs for Printing Press Operators in U.S.

The states with the most job growth for Printing Press Operator are Idaho, Nevada, and Utah. Watch out if you plan on working in Kansas, Kentucky, or Hawaii. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Printing Press Operator Salary

The typical yearly salary for Printing Press Operators is somewhere between $22,690 and $58,710.

Salary Ranges for Printing Press Operators

Printing Press Operators who work in District of Columbia, Alaska, or Minnesota, make the highest salaries.

How much do Printing Press Operators make in different U.S. states?

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $30,740
Alaska $48,140
Arizona $34,240
Arkansas $35,480
California $39,380
Colorado $39,370
Connecticut $38,600
Delaware $42,280
District of Columbia $80,680
Florida $33,640
Georgia $34,000
Hawaii $43,120
Idaho $32,650
Illinois $44,050
Indiana $34,610
Iowa $35,090
Kansas $34,350
Kentucky $33,540
Louisiana $31,280
Maine $35,380
Maryland $39,850
Massachusetts $42,890
Michigan $36,070
Minnesota $44,670
Mississippi $32,690
Missouri $42,920
Montana $33,320
Nebraska $35,110
Nevada $36,040
New Hampshire $43,250
New Jersey $45,580
New Mexico $32,220
New York $41,770
North Carolina $37,090
North Dakota $35,410
Ohio $36,730
Oklahoma $30,430
Oregon $37,920
Pennsylvania $39,150
Rhode Island $41,250
South Carolina $35,770
South Dakota $35,720
Tennessee $38,170
Texas $38,710
Utah $35,550
Vermont $40,570
Virginia $38,690
Washington $42,060
West Virginia $30,630
Wisconsin $38,430
Wyoming $34,540

What Tools & Technology do Printing Press Operators Use?

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Printing Press Operators:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Email software
  • Word processing software
  • Adobe Systems Adobe Acrobat
  • Adobe Systems Adobe Photoshop
  • Adobe Systems Adobe InDesign
  • Graphics software
  • Inventory tracking software
  • Corel CorelDraw Graphics Suite
  • Adobe Systems Adobe PageMaker
  • QuarkXPress
  • Image editing software
  • Adobe Systems Adobe LifeCycle Production Print ES3

Becoming a Printing Press Operator

What kind of Printing Press Operator requirements are there?

Printing Press Operator Degree Level

How Long Does it Take to Become a Printing Press Operator?

Printing Press Operator Work Experience

Where Printing Press Operators Are Employed

Printing Press Operator Sectors

The table below shows some of the most common industries where those employed in this career field work.

Printing Press Operator Industries

You May Also Be Interested In…

Those thinking about becoming a Printing Press Operator might also be interested in the following careers:

Are you already one of the many Printing Press Operator in the United States? If you’re thinking about changing careers, these fields are worth exploring:


Image Credit: Auburn University College of Architecture, Design and Construction via Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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