what does an assembler do?

  • job profiles
  • August 25, 2020

Assemblers put the finishing touches on a host of different products, erecting everything from cars to consumer goods from so many disparate parts. This craftsman-like work is great for any safety-minded professional who excels at troubleshooting and isn’t afraid to get their hands dirty. You’ll find these blue-collar experts in manufacturing plants, warehouses and many other industrial worksites.

Daily responsibilities for assemblers include:

  • understanding and faithfully following the sequential order of assembly to produce the desired finished product
  • ensuring the fit and functionality of all parts involved in assembly
  • reviewing parts both before and after assembly, recognizing problems and taking appropriate action
  • troubleshooting and developing ad hoc fixes as necessary
  • developing special tools, equipment and fixtures as needed to aid assembly assignments
  • bending, straightening and modifying various parts
  • using various tools and technical applications — arbor presses, vises, heat and more — to assemble products
  • conducting manual inspections of equipment and gaging to confirm the quality and completeness of work
  • coordinating workflows and work sequences with other onsite teams
  • adhering to safety best practices at all times
  • communicating the status of work in progress, cycle times, piece counts, estimated job completion times and more
  • escalating issues and challenges as necessary

Does that sound like you? If so, read on to get actionable insights on all the essentials of the role.

what are the key skills of an assembler ?

Aspiring assemblers should have a number of qualities, including a desire to work with their hands and basic technical know-how. But the role also requires human interaction, which is why showcasing the right soft skills on your resume can make a world of difference. But which ones should you call out?

The following soft skills should be value-adds for anyone interested in assembler roles today:

  • team leadership
  • communication
  • collaboration
  • relationship-building
  • strategic thinking
  • troubleshooting
  • time management
  • organization
  • multitasking

how much do assemblers make?

Looking at the latest data, average hourly wages for assemblers can be bucketed into three tiers, largely depending on factors like your location, market, responsibilities, background and level of expertise:

  • low $14.97
  • middle $18.59
  • high $21.77

It’s probably worth mentioning that for assembler roles, especially during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, a mix of day and night shifts are often available as well. That said, as you can see the compensation data above, hourly wages for assemblers sometimes vary to a considerable degree, which can be frustrating.

If you want more granular insights around wages in your market, simply head on over to our salary comparison tool. It’ll give you at-a-glance knowledge of pay in your market and location.

how do you become an assembler?

Good news on this front: Becoming an assembler is an attainable goal — and a great next step in your career. Key requirements to be considered for the role include:

  • high school diploma or GED (not always required)
  • previous experience in assembler roles (not always required)
  • ability to follow written and verbal instructions
  • native building, assembling or construction aptitude
  • current knowledge of manual work processes

In the interim, if you’re interested in broadening or deepening your knowledge of relevant subjects in this field, you should know that there are great educational resources available right now to help you out. Go ahead and check out the top courses on manufacturing assembly on Udemy, our learning partner, if you aren’t sure where to get started.

key takeaways

Hopefully, this article has clarified some of your big-picture questions and concerns about becoming an assembler, and helped show you the path forward. We also hope you know that we’re here to support you in your entire career journey, whether that means growing in your existing field or breaking into a new one altogether.