Great Jobs KC

Industrial Robot Operation and Programming

What is it?

A FANUC Handling Tool Operator is a skilled individual responsible for operating, programming, and maintaining robots equipped with the FANUC HandlingTool software package. These robots are used in various industries, primarily for material handling tasks within automated production lines. Here’s a breakdown of their key responsibilities:

Robot Operation and Programming:

  • Powering up and jogging the robot: They safely start up the robot system, perform basic movements using the manual control panel (jogging), and ensure proper functionality before proceeding.
  • Teaching frames: This involves guiding the robot’s arm through the desired path and recording its positions at specific points. These “frames” become the programmed instructions for the robot to follow during automated operation.
  • Creating and modifying material handling programs: Using the FANUC HandlingTool software, the operator programs the robot’s movements, specifying the sequence of actions, including picking up objects, moving them to designated locations, and precisely placing them.
  • Executing production operations: Once programmed, the operator initiates the automated operation, monitoring the robot’s performance and ensuring tasks are completed efficiently and accurately.
  • Creating and executing macros: Macros are pre-programmed routines for repetitive tasks. The operator may create and utilize macros to streamline specific actions within the program, improving efficiency.
  • Monitoring, forcing, and simulating input and output signals: They monitor sensor signals, force signals (which can temporarily override safety measures for troubleshooting), and simulate input/output signals to test program functionality and identify potential issues.
  • Backing up and restoring programs and files: Regularly backing up programs and files ensures data security and allows for restoring information if needed.
  • Industry: The specific industry and the nature of the products being handled can influence the programming requirements and the overall work environment.
  • Company size and automation level: Larger companies with highly automated production lines might have operators specializing in specific tasks within the programming process, while smaller companies might expect them to handle a broader range of responsibilities.
  • Experience level: Entry-level operators might focus on basic tasks like teaching frames and executing pre-programmed operations, while experienced personnel might take on more complex programming tasks, troubleshooting, and even assisting with robot maintenance.

* Salary Range

$45,200 - $94,200

(entry level – experienced)

* Regional Jobs Available


(3 year forecast)

Length of Training

3 weeks

Type of Training

In Person

Is it Right For You?

Here are some essential skills and qualities for success as a FANUC Handling Tool Operator:

  • Technical aptitude and ability to learn new technologies: Understanding basic robotic principles, the FANUC Handling Tool software, and being comfortable working with technology are crucial.
  • Attention to detail and accuracy: Programming robots requires precision and a keen eye for detail to ensure accurate movements and task completion without errors.
  • Problem-solving and critical thinking skills: Identifying and troubleshooting program errors or minor robot malfunctions are essential aspects of the job.
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team: While some tasks involve individual focus, collaborating with colleagues, supervisors, and maintenance technicians is crucial for efficient operation and resolving challenges.
  • Good hand-eye coordination and spatial awareness: Precise movements and understanding spatial relationships are important for programming the robot’s path and ensuring safe operation.

Overall, a career as a FANUC Handling Tool Operator offers an opportunity to be at the forefront of automation technology. It requires a combination of technical skills, problem-solving abilities, and a commitment to safety and accuracy in a dynamic and evolving manufacturing environment.

* Pay Range Data: Occupational Employment Wages Statistics (OEWS). 2023-Q3.
* Demand: Forecast data is based off national projections provided by the BoLS and adapted for regional growth patterns by Chmura.