Welders will often work on various materials such as steel, brass, stainless steel and aluminium amongst materials. They may also repair and fill holes on various metal constructions and machinery. Because of the wide variety of work welders are involved in and depending on the industry there are more than 100 different processes the welder can use, the most common is arc welding.

Typical Duties

  • Welders will study blueprints or specifications in order to calculate the dimensions of the parts that need to be welded
  • Using the blueprints and specifications welders will use their knowledge of base metals and the various joining techniques to decide on the appropriate material that would do the job best
  • Analyse engineering drawings and specifications to plan layout, assembly and welding operations
  • Inspect materials or structures that need welding and monitor the process of welding
  • Welders also maintain the machinery and equipment they work with
  • May be in charge of fixing structural repairs
  • In Arc welding will either weld by hand or using machines
  • Oxy-fuel welding, oxyacetylene welding or gas welding are techniques used where gas and oxygen are used to produce the necessary heat to melt and join metals
  • Observe tests on welded surfaces – including x-ray, hydrostatic and dimension tolerance to evaluate the quality of the welding and the conformance to the specifications required

Working Conditions

  • Welders are exposed to intense heat and have to ensure that they take adequate care to ensure their own safety and the safety of those around them
  • Welders in mining may be required to spend a lot of time on site on the mines
  • Depending on the type of mine, Welders may spend some time in the open above ground, or underground where it can be cramped and hot
  • Welders need to wear special gloves as well as protective glasses, masks and clothing to protect themselves
  • Welders may be required from time to time to travel to and stay away from home for extended periods. They may be required to live on site away from home, or to work on a fly in fly out basis. FIFO commonly involves flying in for a certain period of time whilst the Welder would be on site, and then flying home for periods when they are off work
  • Welders may get to see the world as if working for large international companies, their job will often involve international travel
  • There is a high level of responsibility involved in being a Welder with a special emphasis on safety and the job can be demanding
  • May be required to work in awkward positions and concentrate for long periods of time

Educational Requirements

  • In order to become a Welder a student would need to complete a formal training program
  • Courses in shop mathematics, blueprint reading, chemistry, metallurgy, physics and drawing would be recommended
  • Depending on the region and the employer Welders may be required to have a certificate or undergraduate degree
  • Welders may also learn techniques through welding apprenticeships
  • Specialised onsite training is sometimes required
  • For more senior roles an Advanced Welding Program may be required

Personal Attributes

  • Have the ability remain focused on detail at all times
  • Have a well-rounded mathematics knowledge
  • Need to stay up to date with technology and be familiar with the latest welding tools and methods
  • Knowledge of different welding design techniques and equipment
  • Be able to work under pressure
  • Have a good work ethic and be goal oriented
  • Would need to have an interest in and aptitude for construction skills
  • Must be interested in working on mite sites which are often located in remote locations


  • There is as a whole a demand for Welders and for this reason they often command good salaries
  • Welders across the board are renowned to earn high salaries, and those in mining are no exception
  • Welders tend to earn extremely competitive salaries often more than those in other industries


  • Find out more about salaries here.