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Become A Quality Control Technician

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Working As A Quality Control Technician

  • Getting Information
  • Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events
  • Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards
  • Repetitive

  • Stressful

  • $38,120

    Average Salary

What Does A Quality Control Technician Do

Quality control inspectors examine products and materials for defects or deviations from specifications.

Duties

Quality control inspectors typically do the following:

  • Read blueprints and specifications
  • Monitor operations to ensure that they meet production standards
  • Recommend adjustments to the assembly or production process
  • Inspect, test, or measure materials or products being produced
  • Measure products with rulers, calipers, gauges, or micrometers
  • Accept or reject finished items
  • Remove all products and materials that fail to meet specifications
  • Discuss inspection results with those responsible for products
  • Report inspection and test data

Quality control inspectors, for example, ensure that the food or medicine you take will not make you sick, that your car will run properly, and that your pants will not split the first time you wear them. These workers monitor quality standards for nearly all manufactured products, including foods, textiles, clothing, glassware, motor vehicles, electronic components, computers, and structural steel. Specific job duties vary across the wide range of industries in which these inspectors work.

Quality control workers rely on many tools to do their jobs. Although some still use hand-held measurement devices, such as calipers and alignment gauges, workers more commonly operate electronic inspection equipment, such as coordinate-measuring machines (CMMs). Inspectors testing electrical devices may use voltmeters, ammeters, and ohmmeters to test potential difference, current flow, and resistance, respectively.

Quality control workers record the results of their inspections through test reports. When they find defects, inspectors notify supervisors and help to analyze and correct production problems.

In some firms, the inspection process is completely automated, with advanced vision inspection systems installed at one or several points in the production process. Inspectors in these firms monitor the equipment, review output, and conduct random product checks.

The following are examples of types of quality control inspectors:

Inspectors mark, tag, or note problems. They may reject defective items outright, send them for repair, or fix minor problems themselves. If the product is acceptable, the inspector certifies it. Inspectors may further specialize in the following jobs:

  • Materials inspectors check products by sight, sound, or feel to locate imperfections such as cuts, scratches, missing pieces, or crooked seams.
  • Mechanical inspectors generally verify that parts fit, move correctly, and are properly lubricated. They may check the pressure of gases and the level of liquids, test the flow of electricity, and conduct test runs to ensure that machines run properly.

Samplers test or inspect a sample for malfunctions or defects during a batch or production run.

Sorters separate goods according to length, size, fabric type, or color.

Testers repeatedly test existing products or prototypes under real-world conditions. Through these tests, manufacturers determine how long a product will last, what parts will break down first, and how to improve durability.

Weighers weigh quantities of materials for use in production.

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How To Become A Quality Control Technician

Most quality control inspectors need a high school diploma and receive on-the-job training that typically lasts as little as 1 month or up to 1 year.

Education & Training

Education and training requirements vary with the responsibilities of the quality control worker. For inspectors who do simple pass/fail tests of products, a high school diploma and some in-house training are generally enough. Workers usually receive on-the-job training that typically lasts for as little as 1 month or up to 1 year.

Candidates for inspector jobs can improve their chances of finding work by studying industrial trades in high school or in a postsecondary vocational program. Laboratory work in the natural or biological sciences also may improve a person’s analytical skills and increase their chances of finding work in medical or pharmaceutical labs, where many of these workers are employed.

Training for new inspectors may cover the use of special meters, gauges, computers, and other instruments; quality control techniques such as Six Sigma; blueprint reading; safety; and reporting requirements. Some postsecondary training programs exist, but many employers prefer to train inspectors on the job.

As manufacturers use more automated techniques that require less inspection by hand, workers in this occupation increasingly must know how to operate and program more sophisticated equipment and utilize software applications. Because these operations require additional skills, higher education may be necessary. To address this need, some colleges are offering associate’s degrees in fields such as quality control management.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

The American Society for Quality (ASQ) offers various certifications, including a designation for Certified Quality Inspector (CQI), and numerous sources of information and various levels of Six Sigma certifications. Certification can demonstrate competence and professionalism, making candidates more attractive to employers. It can also increase opportunities for advancement. Requirements for certification generally include a certain number of years of experience in the field and passing an exam.

Important Qualities

Dexterity. Quality control inspectors should be able to quickly remove sample parts or products during the manufacturing process.

Math skills. Knowledge of basic math and computer skills are important because measuring, calibrating, and calculating specifications are major parts of quality control testing.

Mechanical skills. Quality control inspectors must be able to use specialized tools and machinery when testing products.

Physical stamina. Quality control inspectors must be able to stand for long periods on the job.

Physical strength. Because workers sometimes lift heavy objects, inspectors should be in good physical condition.

Technical skills. Quality control inspectors must understand blueprints, technical documents, and manuals which help ensure that products and parts meet quality standards.

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Quality Control Technician jobs

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Quality Control Technician Career Paths

Quality Control Technician
Quality Assurance Technician Quality Assurance Manager Quality Manager
Director Of Quality
14 Yearsyrs
Quality Inspector Forklift Operator Warehouse Manager
Distribution Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Chemist Laboratory Supervisor
Laboratory Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Production Supervisor Production Manager
Manufacturing Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Quality Inspector Operator Production Supervisor
Manufacturing Supervisor
7 Yearsyrs
Quality Assurance Material Handler Operator
Operation Supervisor
5 Yearsyrs
Technician Service Manager General Manager
Operations Director
9 Yearsyrs
Technician Operations Manager
Plant Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Quality Control Supervisor Production Supervisor
Production Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Quality Control Technician Maintenance Technician
Production Supervisor
7 Yearsyrs
Quality Control Manager Quality Assurance Manager Operations Manager
Purchasing Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Quality Control Supervisor Quality Control Manager
Quality Assurance Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Quality Control Quality Control Inspector
Quality Control Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Quality Assurance Inspector Quality Control Inspector
Quality Control Supervisor
5 Yearsyrs
Quality Assurance Technician Quality Assurance Supervisor Quality Assurance Manager
Quality Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Chemist Project Manager Product Manager
Research And Development Technician
6 Yearsyrs
Quality Technician Production Supervisor Warehouse Supervisor
Shipping Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Production Supervisor Operation Supervisor Operations Manager
Site Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Quality Control Manager Operations Manager Purchasing Manager
Supply Chain Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Quality Laboratory Technician Quality Assurance Technician Production Supervisor
Warehouse Manager
5 Yearsyrs
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Average Length of Employment
Quality Technician 3.6 years
Quality Control 2.9 years
Quality Inspector 2.5 years
Top Employers Before
Internship 5.4%
Technician 5.3%
Cashier 4.9%
Supervisor 3.5%
Manager 3.3%
Top Employers After
Technician 7.1%
Supervisor 3.7%
Chemist 3.6%
Manager 3.5%

Quality Control Technician Demographics

Gender

Male

62.5%

Female

35.7%

Unknown

1.9%
Ethnicity

White

76.1%

Hispanic or Latino

13.1%

Asian

8.1%

Unknown

1.9%

Black or African American

0.8%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

66.6%

French

7.1%

Chinese

2.6%

Vietnamese

2.4%

Italian

2.4%

Japanese

2.4%

Russian

2.1%

German

2.1%

Arabic

2.1%

Mandarin

1.8%

Portuguese

1.8%

Polish

1.3%

Hindi

1.1%

Swahili

0.8%

Korean

0.8%

Romanian

0.5%

Gujarati

0.5%

Hungarian

0.5%

Carrier

0.5%

Tagalog

0.5%
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Quality Control Technician Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

20.5%

Pennsylvania State University

7.1%

Purdue University

5.0%

Middle Tennessee State University

4.9%

Iowa State University

4.9%

Ashford University

4.7%

Rochester Institute of Technology

4.7%

Ohio State University

4.1%

Northeastern University

4.1%

Strayer University

3.9%

Michigan State University

3.9%

Kaplan University

3.9%

Grand Valley State University

3.7%

Oregon State University

3.7%

Southern New Hampshire University

3.7%

Kent State University

3.5%

University of North Carolina at Greensboro

3.5%

Western Washington University

3.4%

Arizona State University

3.4%

University of Toledo

3.4%
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Majors

Business

20.9%

Biology

12.8%

Chemistry

11.0%

Electrical Engineering

7.4%

Management

3.8%

Electrical Engineering Technology

3.6%

Criminal Justice

3.6%

Computer Science

3.5%

Accounting

3.4%

General Studies

3.4%

Biochemistry, Biophysics, Molecular Biology

3.3%

Health Care Administration

3.0%

Industrial Technology

2.8%

Food Science

2.7%

Chemical Engineering

2.7%

Computer Information Systems

2.6%

Mechanical Engineering

2.5%

Psychology

2.4%

Education

2.4%

Environmental Science

2.3%
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Degrees

Bachelors

38.9%

Other

27.0%

Associate

15.8%

Masters

9.4%

Certificate

5.5%

Diploma

2.0%

Doctorate

1.3%

License

0.2%
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Job type you want
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Internship
Temporary

Real Quality Control Technician Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Surimi Quality Control Technician American Seafoods Company LLC AK Feb 01, 2016 $74,089
Quality Control Technician III Progenitor Cell Therapy, LLC Mountain View, CA Sep 09, 2014 $72,000
Quality Control Technician II Evonik Corporation Garyville, LA Apr 06, 2015 $65,021
Industrial Engineering & Quality Control Technician Sejong Georgia, LLC. LaGrange, GA Jul 16, 2015 $59,500
Quality Control Technician IV Nazdar Company Shawnee, KS Jul 25, 2016 $58,448 -
$63,448
Quality Control Technician IV Nazdar Company Shawnee, KS Sep 23, 2015 $57,491 -
$62,587
Quality Control Technician Saehaesung Alabama, Inc. AL Apr 27, 2015 $55,037
Quality Control Technician Pacific Trellis Fruit LLC Nogales, AZ Jan 07, 2016 $55,000
Quality Control Technician, Surgical Intruments Phoenix Instruments Inc. Naperville, IL Sep 24, 2015 $55,000
Quality Control Technician Pacific Trellis Fruit LLC Nogales, AZ Jan 15, 2015 $55,000
Quality Control Technician GFF, Inc. Industry, CA May 30, 2011 $53,350
Quality Control Technician GFF, Inc. Industry, CA Sep 01, 2011 $53,350
Laboratory Quality Control Technician Shah Associates, Md, Pa MD Apr 22, 2011 $53,082
Food Imports Quality Control Technician Strategic Opportunities LLC Hempstead, NY May 09, 2016 $47,000
Quality Control Technician Twentyfirst Century Biochemicals Incorporated Marlborough, MA Dec 31, 2009 $46,000
Quality Control Technician Twentyfirst Century Biochemicals Marlborough, MA Dec 18, 2009 $46,000
Quality Control Technician Twentyfirst Century Biochemicals Incorporated Marlborough, MA Dec 15, 2009 $46,000
Quality Control Technician II Kalsec, Inc. Kalamazoo, MI Nov 01, 2013 $45,843
Quality Control Technician Brooklyn Imports, Inc. Carlstadt, NJ Jun 15, 2016 $45,802
Quality Control Technician Evonik Stockhausen LLC Garyville, LA Sep 15, 2012 $45,497
Quality Control Technician Evonik Stockhausen LLC Garyville, LA Dec 01, 2011 $45,497
QC Tech 1 Progenitor Cell Therapy, LLC Mountain View, CA Sep 01, 2013 $41,600
Quality Control Technician Pestka Biomedial Laboratories, Inc. Piscataway, NJ Aug 31, 2016 $41,200
Quality Control Technician Dulcinea Farms LLC Ladera Ranch, CA Jan 01, 2011 $40,622
Quality Control Technician Dulcinea Farms LLC Ladera Ranch, CA Jan 16, 2011 $40,622
Quality Control Technician Berkeley Advanced Biomaterials, Inc. Berkeley, CA Sep 18, 2015 $40,100 -
$55,000
Quality Control Technician Grier Abrasive, Co., Inc. South Holland, IL Mar 24, 2009 $40,000 -
$45,000
Quality Control Technician III Ferro Corporation Cleveland, OH Oct 01, 2011 $40,000 -
$50,000
Quality Control Technician Packaging Sales Group, Inc. Miami, FL Nov 29, 2007 $39,027

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Top Skills for A Quality Control Technician

QualityProductLabEquipmentTestProceduresFoodSafetyRawMaterialsQualityChecksISOPHMeterGMPCorrectiveActionsDataEntryTestResultsFDAQualityStandardsQualityAuditsFinalInspectionFinalProductControlTechnicianHaccpCMM

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Top Quality Control Technician Skills

  1. Quality Product
  2. Lab Equipment
  3. Test Procedures
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Exceeded customer product expectations by maintaining equipment to produce superior quality products.
  • Instructed production employees on how to test and operate lab equipment.
  • Supported, managed and documented engineering test procedures for customized product builds.
  • Monitored quality and accuracy of products through personal integrity to meet various client and food safety specifications.
  • Oversee the program for sampling, including: microbial, chemical, and contaminants testing of raw materials entering the facility.

Top Quality Control Technician Employers

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