How to Become a Quality Maintenance Technician: Career Roadmap
Research the requirements to become a quality maintenance technician. Learn about the job description and duties and read the step-by-step process to start a career in quality maintenance.
Do I Want to Be a Quality Maintenance Technician?
Quality maintenance technicians handle repairs and maintenance of buildings, grounds, machinery and equipment. They can work with plumbing, electrical, heating and/or ventilation systems. These types of workers are employed in various settings, including apartment buildings and stores. The work may be physically demanding, and safety precautions must be taken, especially when working with tools and electricity.
Maintenance technicians are usually hired to handle everyday repair and maintenance work that doesn't require a specialist, such as a licensed plumber. These workers typically receive on-the-job training and do not need formal education or licensing. Voluntary certification for qualified maintenance and repair workers is available and may help with career advancement prospects. The following table shows the core requirements for quality maintenance technicians:
|Degree Level||High school diploma; postsecondary or technical training may be valuable*|
|Certification||Voluntary certification is available*|
|Experience||Varies; at least 2-3 years of related experience is typical**|
|Key Skills||Troubleshooting, dexterity, customer service and computer skills*|
|Computer Skills||Familiarity with facilities management, industrial control and other related software***|
|Technical Skills||Ability to use related tools, such as pullers, pipe cleaning equipment and hammers***|
|Additional Requirements||Valid driver's license**|
Sources: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, **Employer job postings (February 2013), ***O*Net OnLine.
Step 1: Develop the Appropriate Training
Training to become a quality maintenance technician may include completing a degree or certificate from a community college, technical school or other academic institution. Students can find a variety of programs related to quality maintenance, such as a certificate in manufacturing skills or an associate's degree in industrial maintenance. These programs can help students develop an understanding of quality and control, as well as other related topics like electricity, computers, and how to handle basic repair tasks.
Step 2: Acquire Work Experience
Aspiring quality maintenance technicians can find entry-level jobs, which offer the experience required by many employers. Most workers in these fields get job training by working under more experienced workers. During their training, they typically have the opportunity to develop experience in areas that include replacing lighting fixtures, inspecting equipment, testing machines and solving basic maintenance issues.
- Find positions in field of interest. Quality maintenance technicians can work in various settings, such as hotels, apartment complexes or commercial centers, and specific job duties and training may vary depending on the type of setting. Developing entry-level experience in a specific setting may later increase job prospects and help with career advancement.
- Consider obtaining voluntary certification. Earning certification from an organization, such as the Society for Maintenance and Reliability Professionals (SMRP), can help improve career prospects by demonstrating a candidate's level of dedication and expertise to potential employers. The SMRP offers the Certified Maintenance and Reliability Professional (CMRP) designation, which entails successfully passing a certification exam, as well as completing continuing education and/or passing a recertification exam every few years in order to keep the certification valid.
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