Quality Control Technician: Job Description and Info About a Career in Quality Control Technology
Quality Control Technology offers individuals with an interest in engineering technology and a detail-oriented work ethic a challenging career path with ample opportunities for growth. Quality Control Technician jobs usually require a 2-year associate degree program in engineering technology at a community college or technical institute, and jobs can be found in a wide variety of industries, working with a huge array of products. Continue reading for more information about careers in Quality Control Technology.
Career Definition: Quality Control Technology
Working in an impressive variety of settings, Quality Control Technicians are responsible for maintaining quality-assurance processes, testing products and recording and analyzing results data during product development and manufacturing. The products being tested can range from healthcare equipment to apparel to food items, depending on the industry in which the Quality Control Technician works. Reporting to a quality control engineer, Quality Control Technicians follow through on set processes and ensure adherence to best production practices and product quality standards, as well as monitor the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of product output.
How to Become a Quality Control Technician
Required Education for a Career in Quality Control Technology
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), reports that employers require at least a 2-year associate degree for most engineering technology positions, including Quality Control Technician jobs (www.bls.gov). Students can find programs accredited by the Technology Accreditation Commission of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) at community colleges and technical institutes (www.abet.org). Laboratory work in Quality Control Technology is an important part of the degree curriculum. Working Quality Control Technicians can earn Quality Technician certification from the American Society for Quality (ASQ), as long as they have completed four years of education and on-the-job experience to qualify for the certification examination, though some exceptions do exist (www.asq.org).
Skills Required for a Career in Quality Control Technology
Quality Control Technicians must be meticulous in their work, skilled in quality processes and statistical techniques, and knowledgeable about measurement and test equipment (MT&E) and failure mode and effects analysis (FMEA) concepts, according to the ASQ. Attention to detail and an aptitude for working with data are pluses, and a solid grasp of the sciences and basic engineering concepts is helpful. Because Quality Control Technicians often work as part of an integrated team, excellent interpersonal and communication skills are also crucial.
Quality Control Technology Career Outlook
The BLS predicts average growth overall in engineering technology over the next five to six years, and engineering technicians, including Quality Control Technicians, can expect annual earnings in the $30,000 to $40,000 ranges, depending on experience and industry. Quality Control Technicians looking to advance their careers can pursue Quality Control engineering jobs with further education (a bachelor's or master's degree in engineering); however, opportunities for advancement are also plentiful through work experience. Some Quality Control Technicians aim for more senior positions in Quality Control production management, while others look to become supervisors or lead inspection teams.
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