Crane Operator




OFO No: 734301




Other names for Crane Operator:

  • Banksman
  • Braceperson
  • Chairlift Operator
  • Cherry Picker Operator
  • Crane Driver
  • Elevated Work Platform Operator
  • Hoist Operator
  • Onsetter
  • Pile Driver
  • Portainer Operator
  • Tower Crane Operator
  • Winch Operator
  • Winding Engine Driver (Human and Materials)
  • Winding Engine Driver (Materials)



Youtube clip – All about being a Crane Operator

For training options in South Africa – scroll down


What is a Crane Operator?

Crane Operators job is to work on cranes or draglines – to lift, move position and place machinery, equipment or other large objects at construction sites.

They work for construction firms, manufacturers, shipbuilders, cargo-handlers and railways.

Your job as a Crane Operator is to guide the machine in lifting or moving of heavy objects and materials. You operate a crane using pedals and levers to turn, raise and lower the boom, being guided by hand signals from a supervisor or co-worker below.

If you see yourself as having a good sense of direction and an interest in construction then a career as a Crane Operator may be for you!

What does a Crane Operator do?

  • operates a crane using pedals
  • moves cargo/stuff from one position to another
  • performs routine maintenance on your crane
  • cleans and lubricates equipment

Are you . . . ?

  • physically fit?
  • co-ordinated?
  • fearless?
  • good at driving?

How do I become a Crane Operator? 

You will need a minimum Grade 9 to get a Crane Operating licence. 


  • Learnership – Crane Operations Level 2
  • Learnership – Advanced Crane Operations Level 3


  • Learnership – Crane Operations Level 2
  • National Certificate in Lifting Machines Operations Level 3


Here are a few places that also offer training (for example):


Offers training in managing heavy equipment.

The short course requires trainees, who have never operated a machine before to attend a 5 day training course. The course has two phases, Novice Training for beginners and Advanced Refresher training for those with previous operating experience. 


Offers short SETA accredited training courses in Crane Operating. The duration ranges from 1-5 days.


For operators with no experience, full training course takes place over 5 days after which an assessment will be given. This training is offered in both practical and theory based learning. 

  • TETA


OTHER CAREERS TO CONSIDER:  Automotive Electrician and Automotive Sheetmetal Worker

Is becoming a Crane Operator the right career choice for me?