What Millwrights Do

The millwright’s job responsibilities can vary from one company to another. For oil and gas companies that are expanding their exploration sites, the millwright’s primary responsibility may be in constructing equipment. For companies with established locations, the millwright may spend most of his or her time maintaining and repairing equipment. While the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a decrease in the number of millwright jobs by 15 percent by 2020, this trend most likely won’t apply to the oil and gas industry. With many companies expanding drilling and extraction operations due to hydraulic fracturing, the demand for all employees, including millwrights, should increase across the country.

A Millwright in Action

Millwrights are skilled workers and employers need millwrights with training and experience, which can take time. At the same time, like many industries, there are many employees in the oil and gas industry reaching retirement age. This will create increased opportunities for millwrights that have training and experience.

Common Responsibilities Include:

  • Assembling and installing new machinery.
  • Being the first point of contact with management when equipment goes down.
  • Using various equipment such as hoists, dollies, rollers, and trucks, move machinery when needed.
  • As needed, signal crane and lift operators, indicating where to put machinery.
  • Building or supervising the building of foundations for equipment.
  • Reading blueprints and schematic drawings to understand how machinery should be assembled.
  • Attaching new parts to the basic unit of a piece of equipment.
  • Makes accurate measurements to align and fit machine parts together; uses hand tools, squares, rules, and other equipment for several tasks.
  • Operates equipment, such as grinders, to modify machine parts for use in equipment.
  • Installs robots and programs electronic controls (may have programming help).
  • Tests equipment to make sure it is working properly.
  • Takes machinery apart for replacement or repair and then adjusts, oils, fixes, and replaces machinery parts.
  • Troubleshoots problems with equipment and adjusts as necessary.
  • Constructs parts or orders replacement parts and installs them.

In the oil and gas industry, millwrights are in demand everywhere there are drilling and extraction sites and refineries, including the United States, Canada, Europe, Australia, and other countries. You’ll frequently find these positions listed in the OilJobFinder JobCenter.

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Training for Millwrights