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Technicians are the backbone of the UK’s economy and highly skilled individuals who use their science, engineering or technology knowledge to identify and solve practical problems. Technicians are the electricians and plumbers that we all rely on, but they are also crucial to the success of the Aviation, Chemical, Digital, Engineering and Manufacturing industries.
Although a technician’s job, and the qualifications required for it, will vary significantly from one sector to another, a Technician will typically work with complex systems or performing highly technical, mechanical or diagnostic tests.
Currently, over 1.5 million Technicians are employed in the UK, according to recent statistics by the Gatsby Charitable Foundation which supports STEM careers across the UK. The majority of these Technicians are employed in engineering jobs. However, there are significant numbers of Technicians working in Science, Health, and Technology.
However, an aging workforce means that approximately 50,000 Technicians are retiring every year, and forecasts show we will need as many as 700,000 more technicians in the next decade to meet demand from employers.
Depending on the particular Technician job, technical education pathways such as apprenticeships, traineeships or the upcoming T-levels would be among the best routes to becoming a Technician. However, many Technicians have taken varied paths to their current Technician job.
As a general rule, most Technicians will have Level 3 qualifications, such as A-levels, advanced apprenticeships, Level 3 NVQ, Tech Level, or the International Baccalaureate Diploma. Regardless of the sector technician may choose to work within, there is a range of transferrable skills every Technician should have in order to be successful in their respective careers and progress on a professional level.
Because Technicians are called upon to understand and operate complex machinery, equipment, and systems, technical knowledge and mathematical skills are essential for the job. Whether it’s diagnostic testing, working on systems, maintaining appliances or recording a patient’s symptoms, Technicians must also pay close attention to the minute details of their job in order to avoid risks and ensure a project is completed as accurately and efficiently as possible.
Because Technicians speak with customers and their supervisors on a daily basis, the ability to understand instructions and communicate effectively is also an absolute mast. Technicians must also possess excellent record-keeping skills to document actions and whereabouts, as their job may require them to deal with controlled substances, dangerous chemicals, or work solo in the field
A Technician must also be manually dextrous, using their hands with precision on small items and/or small in small spaces. Because Technicians are often on their feet for many hours or called upon to lift heavy items, they also need a significant level of physical stamina to do this job.
A career as a Technician is highly-varied and rewarding with good levels of pay and opportunities for career progression. This means that Technicians are spoilt for choice in terms of job opportunities, and can work in virtually every sector.
The career paths skilled Technicians take are undoubtedly diverse, ranging from Electrical Technicians and Engineers to Sound Technicians and Gallery Technicians, as well as Lab Technicians and Medical Technicians. However, there is one thing that they all have in common – they are professionals with high levels of skills and knowledge.
Depending on the area of expertise, a Technician can further their career through a range of licensing bodies including the Engineering Council, Science Council and The Chartered Institute for IT.
Becoming a Smart Meter Fitter is also a viable option for people looking to pursue a career as a Technician in engineering. If we’ve sparked your interest in the wealth of opportunities a career as a Technician provides, watch our Technician and Trainee Smart Meter Fitter video below!
Sheffield is a city and metropolitan borough in South Yorkshire, England. The population of the City of Sheffield is 577,800 and it is one of the eight largest regional English cities that make up the Core Cities Group.
Home to the Arctic Monkeys, Sheffield boasts a wide range of companies across manufacturing, professional services and retail. With a wide range of global and local brands including, Tesco, Capita and Sky, Sheffield has lots of great call centre jobs.