How much money should I be making? If your like me, this question pops in your mind every time you get paid. Probably not enough, right? I would like to share with you how much the pressman make that I have worked with as well as some factors that make a difference how much they got paid.
I have worked in four different pressrooms in 22 years on six different presses. Though we never openly spoke about it, somehow we knew how much the other got paid. Additionally, I have friends in the industry who volunteered the information. Here's how much they made.
A first pressman on a web press in the places I've worked in the past 10 years made anywhere from 33 to 39 dollars per hour. The pay graduated down to barely above minimum wage for the newbie. Sheetfed pressmen were usually paid in high 20's if they were skilled and worked with four color.
Now that raises some questions. What determines how much they got paid? I think three factors come into play: location, equipment and experience.
|Average salary based on location.|
The average wage of a pressman according to one salary survey says that a pressman who works downtown Manhattan makes an average of $48,000 per year. A pressman in Miami makes about $28,000. It seems that the cost of living as well as the number of pressmen available makes a difference. The wages I spoke about earlier were for pressmen who worked downtown Vancouver, Canada. So yes, even the country you work in makes a difference.
I have mostly worked on high speed commercial heatset web presses and wages have been a little higher than the sheetfed, though not without exception. It is a simple principle that applies to any trade: the more expertise and experience required, the higher the pay. Working on a press that is worth millions not doubt makes a difference, but if monkeys could do it then we would all be making minimum wage, wouldn't we?
Lastly, the statistics you see online really don't mean much. They tell you the average wage. That covers the new guy as well as the veteran. Take it with a grain of salt. You can do much better than those averages if you have half a brain and a few years under your belt.
If you would be willing to share how much you make, where you live, and equipment you work on, please share in a post below. After all, that's the info you want too, isn't it?