Technician Job Description

WHAT DO TECHNICIANS DO?

Let's get technical. Technicians are skilled workers that work with complex systems or perform highly technical mechanical or diagnostic tests. Depending on the field, technicians may work independently or under the direction of a professional. Technicians can work indoors or might spend most of their time outside.

Examples of technicians include Service Center Technicians, Automotive Technicians working in garages or service stations, Maintenance Technicians working with HVAC systems and building maintenance, Pharmacy Technicians, Psychiatric Technicians working in hospitals, Dental Technicians, Medical Technicians working in labs or hospitals, or Veterinary Technicians.

HOW MUCH DO TECHNICIANS MAKE?

Dental technicians made a median pay of $35,140 per year, or $16.90 an hour in 2010, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Pharmacy technicians made $13.65 an hour, or $28,400 a year. Veterinarian technicians made $14.28 per year, or $29,710 a year. Medical technicians made $46,680 per year or $22.44 an hour.

WHAT ARE THE EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS?

This varies by profession. Dental techs and auto technicians only require a high school education to get started, while many others need an associate's degree or some post-secondary education. In addition, some jobs will require licensure or background checks. All have ongoing education opportunities for continued learning.

JOB SKILLS AND REQUIREMENTS

  • Math Skills: The ability to count, add quickly and understand fractions, measurements and math problems.
  • Communication Skills: Technicians will speak with customers and their supervisors, so the ability to understand instructions and communicate effectively will benefit you greatly.
  • Recordkeeping: When dealing with controlled substances, dangerous chemicals, or working solo in the field, you will need to document your actions and whereabouts.
  • Attention to Detail: You must be able to pay attention to the minute details of your job, whether that is diagnostic testing, working on complex systems or recording a patient's symptoms.
  • Technical Skills: You will be called upon to understand and operate complex machinery and systems.
  • Manual Dexterity: You will need to use your hands with precision on small items and/or small in small spaces. You must be quick and confident with your hands.
  • Stamina: Technicians are often on their feet for many hours, or called upon to lift heavy items. You will need physical stamina to do this job.