Machinists

What they do:

Set up and operate a variety of machine tools to produce precision parts and instruments. Includes precision instrument makers who fabricate, modify, or repair mechanical instruments. May also fabricate and modify parts to make or repair machine tools or maintain industrial machines, applying knowledge of mechanics, mathematics, metal properties, layout, and machining procedures.

On the job, you would:

  • Calculate dimensions and tolerances using knowledge of mathematics and instruments such as micrometers and vernier calipers.
  • Machine parts to specifications, using machine tools, such as lathes, milling machines, shapers, or grinders.
  • Measure, examine, or test completed units to check for defects and ensure conformance to specifications, using precision instruments, such as micrometers.
  • Set up, adjust, and operate all of the basic machine tools and many specialized or advanced variation tools to perform precision machining operations.
  • Align and secure holding fixtures, cutting tools, attachments, accessories, or materials onto machines.
  • Monitor the feed and speed of machines during the machining process.
  • Study sample parts, blueprints, drawings, and engineering information to determine methods and sequences of operations needed to fabricate products, and determine product dimensions and tolerances.
  • Select the appropriate tools, machines, and materials to be used in preparation of machinery work.
  • Lay out, measure, and mark metal stock to display placement of cuts.
  • Observe and listen to operating machines or equipment to diagnose machine malfunctions and to determine need for adjustments or repairs.

Knowledge

  • Mechanical
  • Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
  • Production and Processing
  • Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
  • Mathematics
  • Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Design
  • Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
  • English Language
  • Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Engineering and Technology
  • Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
  • Administration and Management
  • Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
  • Education and Training
  • Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
  • Computers and Electronics
  • Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
  • Customer and Personal Service
  • Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.

Skills

  • Operation Monitoring
  • Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
  • Quality Control Analysis
  • Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
  • Operation and Control
  • Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
  • Troubleshooting
  • Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.
  • Critical Thinking
  • Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Monitoring
  • Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Active Listening
  • Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Speaking
  • Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Coordination
  • Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
  • Complex Problem Solving
  • Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.

Abilities

  • Problem Sensitivity
  • The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Control Precision
  • The ability to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions.
  • Manual Dexterity
  • The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
  • Finger Dexterity
  • The ability to make precisely coordinated movements of the fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble very small objects.
  • Multilimb Coordination
  • The ability to coordinate two or more limbs (for example, two arms, two legs, or one leg and one arm) while sitting, standing, or lying down. It does not involve performing the activities while the whole body is in motion.
  • Arm-Hand Steadiness
  • The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.
  • Deductive Reasoning
  • The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
  • Information Ordering
  • The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
  • Category Flexibility
  • The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
  • Mathematical Reasoning
  • The ability to choose the right mathematical methods or formulas to solve a problem.

Work Activities

  • Controlling Machines and Processes
  • Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).
  • Getting Information
  • Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
  • Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material
  • Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
  • Handling and Moving Objects
  • Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.
  • Thinking Creatively
  • Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.
  • Performing General Physical Activities
  • Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events
  • Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
  • Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.

Interests

  • Realistic
  • Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
  • Second Interest High-Point
  • Secondary-Cutoff/Rank Descriptiveness
  • Conventional
  • Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
  • Investigative
  • Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
  • Artistic
  • Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.
  • Third Interest High-Point
  • Tertiary-Cutoff/Rank Descriptiveness
  • Enterprising
  • Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.
  • First Interest High-Point
  • Primary-Rank Descriptiveness
  • Social
  • Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.

Work Styles

  • Attention to Detail
  • Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
  • Dependability
  • Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
  • Cooperation
  • Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
  • Independence
  • Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
  • Initiative
  • Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
  • Integrity
  • Job requires being honest and ethical.
  • Adaptability/Flexibility
  • Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
  • Self Control
  • Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
  • Persistence
  • Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
  • Achievement/Effort
  • Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.