NorthWestern Energy Hydro System Operator in Great Falls, Montana

Hydro System Operator

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  • 08-Aug-2018 to 22-Aug-2018 (MST)

  • Energy Supply

  • Great Falls, MT, USA

  • Regular Full Time

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POSTING DATES: August 8, 2018 through August 22, 2018


Hydro System Operator (2 positions)


Energy Supply Hydro

Work Location

Great Falls, MT/ Rainbow Dam


$44.18/hour per IBEW CBA

Employment Status

Regular Full-time

Employment Physical


Drug Test


Background Check


Relocation Benefit



The Hydro System Operator (HSO) is responsible for the safe operation of hydroelectric power plant equipment, including turbine generator, auxiliary and station complementary equipment, associated transmission and distribution facilities, generation, and river flows. This is to include, but not limited to issue line clearances and understand plant equipment clearances, communicate unit shut downs and start up times, forecast available generation in advance according to unit availability and river flows, work with other business units pertaining to area load demands. This position is responsible for understanding and reacting to continuous changing river conditions and various plant alarms. The HSO will also be responsible for creating and updating reports and outage information on a daily basis.


  • All NorthWestern Energy employees are required to adhere to company safety standards and the Code of Business Conduct & Ethics

  • Ensure all actions are consistent with NorthWestern Energy's values, mission, and strategic business objectives

  • Perform all operations and maintain the GCC in a safe, reliable, and compliant manner

  • Calculate hourly, daily and monthly accounting of generation and water flows

  • Switching orders for clearance procedures

  • Operate and monitor plants by computerized equipment

  • Coordinate off hour issues/callouts

  • React and address alarms as necessary

  • Maintain good communication with operations, maintenance, engineering, and management

  • Comply and follow all site safety requirements and procedures, including documented procedures and guidelines of external agencies

  • Identify safety hazards and take corrective actions as necessary

  • Respond to Control Center power generation requests

  • Maintain power generation and safeguard station equipment during emergency situations

  • Assist in Investigating and troubleshooting problems with plant power generation including turbine control equipment and electrical and mechanical systems; provide follow-up reports/analysis as needed

  • Represent NorthWestern Energy and interact effectively and responsibly with internal company employees and external agencies; includes providing feedback to production teams and operators

  • Administer Lockout/Tagouts as required

  • Insure compliance with all applicable Federal and State regulations related to the operation of the plants as well as safe work practices and public safety

  • Maintain accurate operating logs, reports, records, time sheets, work orders and other administrative documents related to the power plants; complete any other required paper work, computer work, and documentation

  • Maintain and update plant operating manuals, technical references, prints and diagrams and preventive/predictive maintenance records; develop and revise plant operation and maintenance procedures

  • Perform and maintain housekeeping standards and duties including sweeping, mopping, taking out trash, and shoveling snow

  • Work 12 hour shift rotation, including overtime, on-call availability for holidays, evenings and weekends

  • Safely perform lifting and carrying requirements of parts and tools up to 30 pounds occasionally, not to exceed 50 pounds

  • This job description is not meant to be inclusive, and will include other reasonable work expectations as assigned


*These functions may be considered essential based on location and other factors

  • Adapt to technological changes as they are implemented

  • Facilitate plant tours and monitor necessary sign in/out areas of control

  • Communicate with local law and fire enforcement agencies

  • May be required to fill-in for vacancies in the operator classification (GCC) when needed. (Available for overtime)


  • High school diploma or equivalent

  • Valid driver's license and satisfactory driving record

  • Possess a working knowledge of hydro plant operations

  • Must pass physical test to access all areas of the hydro plants, including climbing ladders, confined and cramped wet slippery quarters and traveling rough terrain

  • Commitment to safe working practices and knowledge of safety policies/procedures

  • Have working knowledge of A.C. and D.C equipment

  • Have a working knowledge of plant relaying and metering; preferred

  • Demonstrate and maintain a good safety record


External applicants should apply online at Internal applicants should apply online at iConnect. In compliance with the ADA Amendments Act, should you have a disability that requires assistance and/or reasonable accommodation with the job application process, please contact the Human Resources department via phone at 1-800-245-6977, or via email at


When considering applicants for this position, the selection process will take into consideration the needs of NorthWestern, including such factors as reorganization requirements, diversity opportunities, relocation requirements, employee development and job succession. If any of the preceding language conflicts with the applicable bargaining unit agreements, the bargaining unit agreement will prevail.

NorthWestern Energy

Human Resources Department Job # 2652

3010 West 69th Street

Sioux Falls, SD 57108

We are an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, gender, age, disability, veteran status, genetic information or any other protected class in accordance with applicable federal or state laws and statutes.