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What is a Welder? The School Leaver Guide

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What is a Welder?

Welders shape, join and cut metal to provide materials for engineering and construction. They play an important role in supply lines for a huge number of industries. Consequently, welders are always in demand and there are a huge range of welding roles available.

What does a Welder do?

  • Preparing materials to be welded

  • Following technical drawings

  • Inspecting and testing equipment

  • Welding together sections of metal, e.g. pipes and plating

  • Inspecting the structural integrity of materials welded

Skills & interests required for a Welder

  • Working to deadlines

  • Attention to detail

  • Practical and technical skills

  • Understanding of technical drawings

  • Good concentration

Working hours

38 hours a week but this can depend on your employer and the nature of your role.

Work base

A garage, production plant, or business. Welders can work in many technical environments.

Salary ranges & earning potential

Salaries begin around £16,000 per annum but can grow with experience to as much as £35,000 for highly experienced welders.

Education requirements

Most commonly welders qualify via an apprenticeship but there are role competency tests that can enable you to enter the industry. You have to demonstrate your ability to meet the standards required.

Useful subjects to study at school

  • Metalworks

  • Design Technology

  • Welding skills through courses

Useful resources

The Welding Institute