A riggers’ main responsibility is ensuring that heavy equipment and materials are moved safely around the workplace.

This is a high-risk activity, considering the size and weight of a lot of common building materials, but it is also a rewarding career with the scope to progress and learn more in-depth skills. If you enjoy practical outdoor work, have a head for heights and like working in a team, becoming a rigger could be a good career path.

What you need to become a rigger

Because rigging is considered high-risk work, riggers are required to have adequate training and licensing. Here is an overview of what it takes to be a rigger and how much you can expect to get paid once you secure a rigging job.

A rigger’s tasks and duties

Riggers have many tasks and duties, and some may vary depending on the nature of each job.

Common tasks and duties include:

  • Assembling and erecting temporary structures like scaffolding and cranes
  • Installing and operating pulleys, cables, and other lifting equipment
  • Estimating the size and weight of objects to be moved and determining the safest, most appropriate moving mechanism
  • Attaching sling equipment to loads for lifting
  • Erecting structural steel in construction sites
  • Erecting prefabricated panels made of different materials including concrete
  • Inspecting, maintaining, and repairing lifting and rigging equipment

Required skills and qualifications

Rigging is a risky occupation, so candidates are required to meet certain requirements when it comes to skills and qualifications. These include:

  • A basic rigging license (high-risk work license RB)
  • A drivers license
  • A construction induction white card
  • Experience on a building site or mine site – relevant to the job you’re applying for
  • Experience and skills in structural steel and steel erection
  • Aged over 18

Additionally, before you undertake the basic rigging license course, you’ll need to hold a dogging license.

Dogging training will teach you the right slinging techniques to move a load (including the selection and inspection of lifting gear) and how to direct of a crane or hoist operator in the movement of a load when the load is out of the view of the operator.

Kallibr Training (RTO 32365) runs dogging courses every week in Sydney and Brisbane. Find out more about dogging courses here.

How much does a rigger earn?

Rigging is a rewarding occupation that pays pretty well. At the time of writing, riggers in NSW, Queensland and Victoria earn about $85K per year, which equals about $44 per hour.

However, it is worth noting that the starting salary is a bit lower (about $75K). It’s also important to understand that experienced riggers can earn much more than entry-level workers, especially when working on specialised or particularly high-risk jobs.

There is a range of different rigging tasks that can be grouped under basic, intermediate and advanced, and these three categories each have specific licensing requirements. An advanced rigger with strong work experience is naturally going to earn more than a newcomer with a basic rigging qualification.

Start your journey towards becoming a rigger

Are you sold on becoming a rigger? The work is fulfilling and rewarding, and riggers are in demand due to the strong infrastructure and construction growth in Australia at the moment.

Kallibr Training can equip you with the proper training and skills in a realistic, simulated worksite setting. Get in touch today to learn more about our training and licensing options for riggers, including the prerequisite dogging course.