Some people discover the career they want to pursue from a young age. For others, it takes a lot of researching, soul-searching and several years down the line to develop interest in a particular line of work. If becoming a calibration technician is the career path you may want to take, read on to acquaint yourself with some essential information regarding the profession.
What do calibration technicians do?
The primary task of a calibration technician is to install, test, maintain, troubleshoot, and repair a variety of calibrating instruments to make sure they give accurate readings. In performing this job, a calibration technician will be expected:
- To use measurement techniques, tell the difference between various measurement characteristics, use common specification descriptions, and correct any error sources identified.
- To differentiate between various quality system components (e.g. continuous process improvement, customer focus, and product development), quality control tools (e.g. histograms, Pareto diagrams, and check sheets), and quality standards and guides.
- To understand the various types of measurement standards, and know when to apply each standard. These standards may be industry-specific, international or set by the national government.
- To know the techniques and tools used to design, review and improve a quality management system in line with various quality standards and guides.
- To apply tools of mathematics and statistics, such as algebraic equations, graphs and plots, linear interpolation and extrapolation, ratios, angular conversions, etc., to ensure test accuracy.
- To prepare and maintain documentation that validates the use of calibration and measurement systems. For example, a calibration technician may support the use of a particular measurement system by documenting its successful application in a certain manufacturing plant.
Where do calibration technicians work?
Most calibration technicians are employed in the engineering field of the manufacturing industry. Some work for the government, others for private firms, and others as independent contractors.
What skills do calibration technicians need?
Given that calibration technicians work in the engineering field, mathematics and science play a big part in their job. These technicians need to have an eye for accuracy and a critical mind so they can measure, analyse and interpret data collected in the field. Good communication skills are also important, as calibration technicians will need to report their test findings in an easy to understand format.
The above-disclosed information is only an overview of some basic things you need to know about working as a calibration technician. If you are serious about pursing this line of work, you should start thinking about how to meet educational, training and certification requirements for the job.