CHO (Chemicals, Hydrocarbons and Oil) Senior Process Operator

Also known as: Chemical Process Operator, Petroleum and Gas Operator

CHO Process Plant Operators include Process Plant Operators and Senior Process Plant Operators.

Process Operators may specialise in:

  • Chemicals
  • Hydrocarbons extraction
  • Hydrocarbons transmission
  • Oil refining

Chemical Process Operators control the operation of chemical production equipment used in manufacturing a range of products such as paints, inks, soaps and cosmetics, fertilisers, drugs, textiles, ammunition, plastics, glues and resins.

In some plants, operations are computer controlled. Knowledge of batch processing and equipment performance is very important to make sure of high production levels

Chemical Process Operators are trained to handle industrial quantities of chemicals safely, efficiently and with no environmental harm. Safety training and awareness are given high priority. Required protective equipment is provided. Shift work may be required.

Petroleum and Gas Process Operators control the operation of the plant and equipment to pump oil and gas from wellheads, and to refine, process and store petroleum products.

In most refineries and plants, the instruments are computer controlled. Knowledge of chemical and physical processes and equipment performance is very important to enable optimum production.


  • Prepare and measure raw materials;
  • Feed raw material and processing agents into plant machinery;
  • Set controls and operate machinery;
  • Check instruments and equipment to make sure of correct operation, or be alerted to any abnormal operating conditions;
  • Take samples for testing, test products and record process data;
  • Position equipment and connect it to wellheads;
  • Operate pumping equipment to transfer oil and gas from wellheads to refineries, within refineries or to storage facilities;
  • Control equipment to process, manufacture or blend oil, gas and additives into petroleum and gas products, such as fuels, oils and asphalt;
  • Set controls and observe gauges and instruments on equipment;
  • Analyse samples and record data;
  • Check equipment for malfunctions and test well pipes for leaks and fractures and arrange maintenance; and
  • Control the flow of oil and gas through pipelines.

Skills Required

  • Enjoy practical, manual and mechanical work;
  • Be able to work as part of a team;
  • Be able to follow instructions;
  • Possess good communication skills;
  • Be physically fit;
  • Possess good numeracy skills;
  • Possess good problem-solving and analytical skills;
  • Have an aptitude for computerised work; and
  • Have good hand-eye coordination.


$30,000 - $70,000