January 11, 2008
What This Job Pays: cabinetmaker/woodworker
Pay: The median pay of a cabinetmaker in the Seattle area is $30,457 a year, with most making from $24,993 to $37,832 a year, according to salary.com.
Demand: Overall employment of woodworkers is expected to grow by 3 percent during the 2006-16 decade. The slow growth will be a result of increased automation in the wood-products-manufacturing industry. International competition also has led to a significant decline in domestic employment of these workers.
Need to know: Employers seek applicants with a high-school diploma or the equivalent because of the growing sophistication of machinery and the constant need for retraining. Job seekers can enhance their prospects by completing high school and receiving training in mathematics, science and computer applications.
Most woodworkers are trained on the job, however, they pick up skills informally from experienced workers. They can learn basic machine operations and job tasks in a few months, but becoming a skilled woodworker often requires two or more years.
Woodworkers also need mechanical ability, manual dexterity and the ability to pay attention to detail and safety. Skill with computers and computer-controlled machinery is becoming more important.
U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics