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Shoe Machine Operator

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What Does it Take to Be a Shoe Machine Operator?

Job Description: Operate or tend a variety of machines to join, decorate, reinforce, or finish shoes and shoe parts.

Shoe Machine Operator Responsibilities

  • Turn setscrews on needle bars, and position required numbers of needles in stitching machines.
  • Draw thread through machine guide slots, needles, and presser feet in preparation for stitching, or load rolls of wire through machine axles.
  • Remove and examine shoes, shoe parts, and designs to verify conformance to specifications such as proper embedding of stitches in channels.
  • Collect shoe parts from conveyer belts or racks and place them in machinery such as ovens or on molds for dressing, returning them to conveyers or racks to send them to the next work station.
  • Fill shuttle spools with thread from a machine’s bobbin winder by pressing a foot treadle.
  • Hammer loose staples for proper attachment.

Shoe Machine Operator Required Skills

Below is a list of the skills most Shoe Machine Operators say are important on the job.

Operation Monitoring: Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Quality Control Analysis: Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Operation and Control: Controlling operations of equipment or systems.

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Types of Shoe Machine Operator

  • Back Wedger
  • Channeling Machine Operator
  • Last Trimmer
  • Welt Sewer
  • Insole Presser

Is There Going to be Demand for Shoe Machine Operators?

There were about 3,600 jobs for Shoe Machine Operator in 2016 (in the United States). There is little to no growth in job opportunities for Shoe Machine Operator. Due to new job openings and attrition, there will be an average of 400 job openings in this field each year.


The states with the most job growth for Shoe Machine Operator are Illinois, Oregon, and Washington. Watch out if you plan on working in Washington, Oregon, or Illinois. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Salary for a Shoe Machine Operator

The salary for Shoe Machine Operators ranges between about $19,020 and $40,410 a year.


Shoe Machine Operators who work in Massachusetts, Wisconsin, or Maine, make the highest salaries.

Below is a list of the median annual salaries for Shoe Machine Operators in different U.S. states.

State Annual Mean Salary
California $30,580
Florida $35,140
Maine $32,100
Massachusetts $43,330
New York $26,240
Pennsylvania $25,050
Texas $30,470
Washington $32,060
Wisconsin $32,300

Tools & Technologies Used by Shoe Machine Operators

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Shoe Machine Operators:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Data entry software
  • Adobe Systems Adobe Acrobat
  • Inventory tracking software
  • Microsoft operating system
  • Production control software

Becoming a Shoe Machine Operator

What kind of Shoe Machine Operator requirements are there?


How many years of work experience do I need?


Where Shoe Machine Operators Work


Below are examples of industries where Shoe Machine Operators work:


Other Jobs You May be Interested In

Those interested in being a Shoe Machine Operator may also be interested in:

Career changers with experience as a Shoe Machine Operator sometimes find work in one of the following fields:


Image Credit: Steven M O’Kelley via Attribution-ShareAlike 2.5

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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