Crane operator jobs are appropriate for women who have experience operating heavy equipment and who can tolerate the harsh working conditions of an industrial job site. Because the industry is male-dominated, female crane operators must be comfortable being in the minority.
Women who want to be crane operators must be at least 18 years old. Most companies don't require a college degree, but operators should have a high school diploma or GED. Because the job involves climbing, pulling and lifting, companies usually require their operators to meet or exceed a baseline level of physical fitness. Some employers look for past experience, but others hire novice operators into a training program.
Some states mandate that crane operators be licensed, much like other heavy-equipment operators. The process depends heavily on state law and company policy. Companies that work with the National Commission for the Certification of Crane Operators (NCCCO), for example, require employees to pass both written and practical tests. They must also take a medical test, comply with substance abuse restrictions and follow the NCCCO's ethical policy. Other certifying organizations, such as the International Union of Operating Engineers, require workers to accumulate at least 1,000 hours of work or training in the last five years before they can be licensed.