Who needs CAD CAM

The job of a CAM programmer (m / f)

What does a CAM programmer actually do? And what qualifications does an applicant need for this job? We answer these questions in this guide.

The profession of CAM programmer has already become an integral part of many mechanical engineering companies. In the course of the rapidly advancing digitization, this importance only increases: The creation of the CNC code is shifting more and more from the workshop to the design office. But what are the tasks of a CAM programmer and how do you become one? We have answers.


What is a CAD / CAM programmer?

CAM programmers are experts in developing CNC programs for machine tools; z. In some cases, dealing with professional 2D and 3D CAD systems is also part of her job. Put simply, CAM programmers set the generated CAD data sets in work plans and functional sequences for production around. Before these CNC programs can be used, however, they must first be tested extensively on screen workstations, typically using software for machine simulation; so the risk z. B. for machine collisions reduced. Only then does the CAM programmer set up the machine. During operation, he further optimizes the program and controls the production processes.


What training does a CAM programmer need?

Often, CAM programmers have first completed training as a cutting machine operator (male / female), precision mechanic (male / female) or model maker (male / female), possibly also with advanced training as a technician (male / female). That makes sense because Knowledge in the field of materials science and machining production to be seen with pleasure by future employers. The CAM programmer then typically completed the apprenticeship of the same name or at least gained a lot of practical experience in dealing with CAD and CAM software available on the market. The training to become a CAM programmer (m / f) usually lasts twelve months.

Of course, this only describes the technical qualifications in the narrower sense. In addition, CAM programmers are expected to have a solid knowledge of Microsoft Office. Soft skills such as an independent way of working, the ability to work in a team, resilience, paired with a high level of quality awareness and accuracy, are necessary in order to perform optimally in complex industries.


In which industries does the CAM programmer work?

The classic industry in which the CAM programmer is used is mechanical engineering. But the skills of the CAM programmer are also required in a large number of other modern industries. This includes:

  • - automotive industry
  • - Aviation development
  • - Electrical engineering
  • - Power engineering, e.g. B. Wind power
  • - medical technology
  • - Wood and plastic processing
  • - textile industry
  • - Processing of stones and earth

What activities does the profession include in practice?

The field of duties of the CAM programmer in practice is diverse. He independently programs components in CAM software and generates the machine code for the CNC machines. The optimization, simulation and visualization of CNC programs also fall within his area. In addition, the milling programs must be managed in the internal storage medium and regularly checked for correctness and completeness.


The CAM programmer is often also involved in the construction of prototype tools. Close cooperation with the technology department for tool design and cycle time optimization is essential for the CAM programmer. His job means that he regularly coordinates with the work preparation department to ensure quality and deadline specifications.


But it is also conceivable that a CAM programmer will be hired by a company in order to set up a CAD / CAM environment in product development in the first place. In the course of advancing digitization, this is an increasingly popular area of ​​responsibility.


Where can CAM programmers turn to look for a job?

Most CAD, CAM and CNC jobs are offered on the major online job platforms, e.g. B .:

It also makes sense to check company websites directly. Very large companies in particular sometimes only advertise jobs there because they can rely on the broad reach of their own brand.


CAM programmer - a future job

As more and more companies are realizing the advantages of CAM software, the profession of CAM programmer is increasingly in demand. In order to position yourself particularly well, a combination with other apprenticeships such as cutting machine operator can be very useful. A variety of complex tasks await the CAM programmer in the company, guaranteeing an exciting day-to-day project.


Image license: Monty Rakusen, Getty Images