CNC Machinist Job Description [Updated for 2024]

cnc machinist job description

In the manufacturing industry, the focus on CNC machinists has never been more critical.

As technology advances, the demand for skilled individuals who can operate, maintain, and troubleshoot CNC machinery grows.

But let’s delve deeper: What’s truly expected from a CNC machinist?

Whether you are:

  • A job seeker trying to understand the intricacies of this role,
  • A hiring manager crafting the profile of the ideal candidate,
  • Or simply fascinated by the intricacies of CNC machining,

You’re in the right place.

Today, we present a customizable CNC machinist job description template, designed for easy posting on job boards or career sites.

Let’s dive right into it.

CNC Machinist Duties and Responsibilities

CNC Machinists are specialists in operating, setting up and maintaining computer numerically controlled (CNC) machines that cut and shape metal and plastic parts.

They are mainly responsible for producing high-quality precision parts for various industries, with daily duties and responsibilities including:

  • Read and interpret technical blueprints and design models
  • Load raw materials into the CNC machines to produce parts
  • Set up and operate CNC machines, ensuring the machines are set at the correct speed and feed rate
  • Monitor machine operation to detect any problems or errors
  • Inspect and measure finished products to ensure they meet specifications
  • Perform routine maintenance on machines and replace any tools or parts as needed
  • Adhere to all safety standards and regulations, including wearing appropriate personal protective equipment
  • Document and report any issues or irregularities that may arise during the machining process
  • Collaborate with engineers and other machinists to ensure the smooth running of operations


CNC Machinist Job Description Template

Job Brief

We are seeking a skilled CNC Machinist to join our team.

The primary responsibility of the CNC Machinist is to create machine parts and tools using precision computer equipment.

CNC Machinists work with computer numeric controlled (CNC) heavy machinery from setup to operation to produce parts and tools from metal, plastic or other materials.

They also are expected to maintain and check the machinery to ensure its functionality and performance.



  • Read and interpret blueprints, schematics, and manuals.
  • Set up, operate and maintain CNC machinery.
  • Monitor machinery for any discrepancies in production or operation.
  • Measure and examine completed products to ensure they meet requirements.
  • Adjust machine settings to keep parts within required specifications.
  • Perform routine machine maintenance.
  • Assist with other tasks as needed.
  • Follow all safety protocols and procedures.



  • Proven experience as CNC machinist.
  • Ability to read and interpret mechanical documents and drawings.
  • Mechanical aptitude and good math skills.
  • Understanding of computer programming and CAD/CAM.
  • Experience in using precision tools (e.g. micrometers, calipers).
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team.
  • High school diploma or equivalent; completion of vocational training or an apprenticeship will be an asset.



  • 401(k)
  • Health insurance
  • Dental insurance
  • Retirement plan
  • Paid time off
  • Professional development opportunities


Additional Information

  • Job Title: CNC Machinist
  • Work Environment: This job primarily takes place in a machine shop setting. Physical demands include standing for long periods, lifting heavy objects, and wearing protective gear. It may also be noisy due to the machinery.
  • Reporting Structure: Reports to the Shop Supervisor or Production Manager.
  • Salary: Salary is based upon candidate experience and qualifications, as well as market and business considerations.
  • Pay Range: $40,000 minimum to $60,000 maximum
  • Location: [City, State] (specify the location or indicate if remote)
  • Employment Type: Full-time
  • Equal Opportunity Statement: We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status.
  • Application Instructions: Please submit your resume and a cover letter outlining your qualifications and experience to [email address or application portal].


What Does a CNC Machinist Do?

CNC Machinists work in manufacturing settings and are responsible for operating CNC (computer numerical control) machines, which are used to cut, shape, and finish materials like metal and plastic to precise specifications.

They typically work from blueprints or technical drawings and input this data into the CNC machine to produce the required parts.

CNC Machinists are responsible for setting up the machine, choosing the right cutting tools, and monitoring the operation to ensure that the parts being produced meet the quality standards.

They also perform routine maintenance on the machines, such as lubrication and replacing worn-out tools.

CNC Machinists need to have a strong understanding of mathematics, as well as the ability to read and interpret technical drawings.

Another crucial aspect of a CNC Machinist’s role is troubleshooting.

If a machine malfunctions or a part is not being produced correctly, the machinist must identify and rectify the problem.

They also play a critical role in optimizing the manufacturing process by suggesting improvements and modifications to increase efficiency and improve quality.


CNC Machinist Qualifications and Skills

A proficient CNC Machinist should demonstrate the following skills and qualifications that align with the job description:

  • Technical skills to operate and control computer numerical control machines, ensuring that they function correctly and produce desired results
  • Problem-solving abilities to identify and rectify issues related to the operation of the machines, reducing downtime and optimizing productivity
  • Meticulous attention to detail, essential in creating precise components as per the provided specifications
  • Mathematical competencies, particularly in geometry and algebra, to understand blueprints and schematics and to calculate machine speed and feed rates
  • Physical stamina and strength to stand for extended periods and handle heavy machine parts, if necessary
  • Interpersonal skills to work effectively within a team, ensuring smooth operation and maintenance of machines
  • Strong understanding of quality control procedures to ensure the production of high-quality components
  • Communication skills to effectively convey information to supervisors and colleagues, ensuring that everyone is on the same page regarding production processes and goals


CNC Machinist Experience Requirements

Entry-level CNC Machinists typically have at least 1 to 2 years of hands-on experience, often obtained through an apprenticeship, technical school or community college program, where they learn how to operate and maintain various types of CNC machines.

Candidates for more advanced CNC Machinist roles often have between 3 to 5 years of experience, during which they have honed their skills in CNC programming, operation, and troubleshooting.

They may have also gained expertise in specialized areas such as CNC milling or turning.

Those with over 5 years of experience as a CNC Machinist often have additional expertise in advanced manufacturing technologies, machine setup, blueprint reading, and inspection techniques.

They may have also gained some supervisory or team lead experience, making them suitable for roles as a Lead CNC Machinist or CNC Supervisor.

Regardless of the level of experience, most employers require CNC Machinists to have a strong understanding of mathematics, mechanical engineering, and computer programming, as these are critical for operating and programming CNC machines.


CNC Machinist Education and Training Requirements

CNC Machinists typically require a high school diploma or equivalent as a minimum educational qualification.

Many choose to further their education by earning a certificate or associate degree in a machine technology or related field.

These programs provide training in CNC machining, blueprint reading, and computer-aided design (CAD) and manufacturing.

Machinists also need to have a solid foundation in mathematics, specifically trigonometry and geometry, as well as a good understanding of metals and materials science.

In addition to formal education, CNC Machinists often gain hands-on experience through on-the-job training or apprenticeship programs.

Some employers may require CNC Machinists to be certified in the use of specific machines or tools.

Various organizations, such as the National Institute for Metalworking Skills (NIMS), offer such certifications.

Continuing education and staying updated with the latest machining technology and techniques is also crucial for this role.

As technology advances, CNC Machinists must be willing to learn and adapt to new systems and machinery.


CNC Machinist Salary Expectations

A CNC Machinist can expect to earn an average of $19.79 (USD) per hour.

However, this figure can fluctuate depending on factors such as level of expertise, years of experience, and location.


CNC Machinist Job Description FAQs

What skills does a CNC Machinist need?

A CNC Machinist needs strong mathematical skills for precise calculations.

They should have familiarity with CNC programming languages like G-code, and the ability to interpret blueprints and technical drawings.

Attention to detail, problem-solving abilities, and hands-on mechanical skills are also crucial.

Moreover, they must have good manual dexterity and eye-hand coordination.


Do CNC Machinists need a degree?

CNC Machinists typically require a high school diploma or equivalent, and they often complete vocational training or an apprenticeship in machining.

Some roles may require an associate’s degree in CNC machining or a related field.

Certification from the National Institute for Metalworking Skills can also be beneficial.


What should you look for in a CNC Machinist’s resume?

In a CNC Machinist’s resume, look for a solid foundation in mathematics and experience with CAD/CAM software.

They should also have hands-on experience with CNC machinery and familiarity with quality assurance procedures.

Certifications from recognized bodies in the field and past roles that required precision and attention to detail are also good indicators of a suitable candidate.


What qualities make a good CNC Machinist?

A good CNC Machinist is meticulous, as precision is crucial in this role.

They should also be technically inclined, with an understanding of machinery and the ability to troubleshoot mechanical issues.

Good physical stamina is also important, as the job often involves standing for long periods and handling heavy equipment.

Finally, they should be able to work well in a team and communicate effectively.


What are the typical working conditions of a CNC Machinist?

CNC Machinists generally work in manufacturing plants or machine shops.

The environment can be noisy, and they often have to wear protective equipment to ensure safety.

They usually work full time and may sometimes have to work evenings and weekends depending on the production schedules.

The job can be physically demanding, requiring them to stand for long periods and occasionally lift heavy items.



And that’s a wrap.

Today, we’ve given you a glimpse behind the scenes of what it truly means to be a CNC machinist.

Surprise, surprise?

It’s not just about operating machines.

It’s about creating tangible, precision parts that build the world around us, one precise cut at a time.

With our handy CNC machinist job description template and real-life examples, you’re all set to step forward.

But why limit your journey here?

Delve deeper with our job description generator. It’s your next destination for meticulously detailed job listings or for honing your resume to absolute precision.


Every precise cut counts towards the final masterpiece.

Let’s construct that future. Together.

Reasons to Become a CNC Machinist (Job Security Aplenty)

How to Become a CNC Machinist (Complete Guide)

Disadvantages of Being a CNC Machinist (Not Just Mechanical Faults)

The AI-Proof Career Path: Jobs That Emphasize Human Ability

Career Chameleons: The Most Flexible Jobs for Dynamic Lives

The Job Trendsetters: Careers That Are the New Rage

The Job Market Jolt: Careers That Are Electrifying the Scene

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *