When you think about career choices women make – a lot of things come to mind. You think about a career in law, medicine, science, IT, etc. However, as of lately, ladies have been conquering a job that has been considered to be a man’s job for pretty much decades at this point.
We’re talking about welding. Sure, welding isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when you think of ladies in a workplace, but you’d be surprised to see just how women are actually in this branch. Now, whether that was their lifelong dream or not – we don’t know, and we don’t care – because it doesn’t matter.
What we do care about is finding out whether welding is a good career choice if you are a woman. To answer that question, we’re going to have to take a look at the current trends, industry state, salaries, advantages women hold over men and so on. So, without further ado – let’s get started.
Are There Any Women In Trades?
We’re going to start by looking at the bigger picture. In general, general trade jobs have been predominantly occupied by men since most of these jobs rely heavily on brute strength. Well, that and the fact that we tend to look down on women if they try and do manual work.
When we take all of that into consideration, it’s hard to see how there could be a large percentage of women in industries where manual laborers or electricians, or welders are needed. If we take a look at the numbers, our theory turns out to be correct. The percentage of female workers in these positions is measly – just over 3%.
What’s funny is that number was significantly lower only a few years ago. The thing is, a small number of people are willing to get their hands dirty. There is a significant shortage of workers in these trades, and because of it – women have started getting these jobs simply because men didn’t want them.
However, it didn’t take long for women to show that they can do these jobs just as well as any man, so the number of female workers in these industries started growing. Now, how much will this number grow – we don’t know. But, what we do know is that if you do decide to pursue a welding career – you probably won’t be alone.
Is There A Place For Women In Welding?
When it comes to welding, there aren’t a lot of ladies doing it – that’s the sad truth. According to welding.com.au, there are no more than 5% of female welders in the entire industry. Now, as you can see, that’s slightly better compared to the percentage of female workers in general trades, but still – it’s not great.
However, this shouldn’t worry you. The number of female welders is on the rise, and it has been steadily growing for quite some time now. Only in the past five years, there has been an increase of almost 50% of women in the welding industry.
The main reason behind this, aside from nobody wanting to work, is the fact that we are expected to lose almost 60% of the entire welding industry by the mid-2020s. Most of the workers in the industry at this moment are old men – men over 60. All of those men will retire sooner rather than later, leaving us without experienced welders. And, as you know, we can’t move on without welders, as a society, at this point in time. There is still a great need for welders in almost every industry in the world.
As we’ve mentioned before, there aren’t that many young men willing to do the dirty work, so ladies are stepping in. So, when it comes to job security, if you become an excellent welder – you’re pretty much guaranteed to get a job as a welder in the following years.
What’s The Pay Like?
Sure, there’s room for women in welding at the moment, but does that mean they should do it? Well, what you should or shouldn’t do is solely up to you. You’ll undoubtedly have to fight through some misogyny if you want to make it in this men-dominated industry, and you’ll undoubtedly have to face some other obstacles as well, so – it better be worth it, right?
Well, fortunately – it is.
So, the minimal average salary for a welder would be around $30,000, so just above $2,500 a month. Now, that’s decent, but it’s still not great, but keep in mind – this is the least you would be making. On average, an experienced welder would make around $50,000 a year, which is more than enough to live a nice, cozy life. And, if you want to talk about the big leagues, for instance, underwater welders, you would be making anywhere between $60,000 and $130,000, which is more than some CEOs make in a year.
So, yeah – it pays well.
Can Women Become Good Welders?
Believe it or not, despite the general opinion that men are just better at manual labor – women are actually more genetically gifted for welding than men are.
Just ask yourself this question – what’s the essential thing for welding? Well, if you ask us – it’s stability, precision and strength. Now, men are obviously stronger than women – there’s no debate about it. However, when it comes to stability and precision – women take the crown there.
Women are proven to have steadier hands, which is why you often find them working in fields that require such stability and precision. Now, this difference isn’t astronomical, otherwise, we wouldn’t have any male surgeons or welders, but still – women have the upper hand here.
Their hands are steady and still, and they can do some very precise welding work, and that’s not something many men are able to say.
In Conclusion – Is Welding A Good Career Choice For Women?
When you take a look at the big picture, you can clearly see both sides of the coin. Sure, you’ll deal with some bad stuff as a woman in a man-dominated field, people won’t take you seriously, and you’ll often be overlooked for a job – that’s just the way it is.
But if you’re really good at what you do – none of that matter. You could be doing the job you love, doing it well and making six figures a year doing it.
So, yes, we feel like it is safe to say that welding could be a good career choice for a woman.