Skip navigation

Summary Report for:
29-2081.00 - Opticians, Dispensing

Design, measure, fit, and adapt lenses and frames for client according to written optical prescription or specification. Assist client with inserting, removing, and caring for contact lenses. Assist client with selecting frames. Measure customer for size of eyeglasses and coordinate frames with facial and eye measurements and optical prescription. Prepare work order for optical laboratory containing instructions for grinding and mounting lenses in frames. Verify exactness of finished lens spectacles. Adjust frame and lens position to fit client. May shape or reshape frames. Includes contact lens opticians.

Sample of reported job titles: Optician, Dispensing Optician, Licensed Optician, Optometric Assistant, Certified Optician, Licensed Dispensing Optician, Ophthalmic Dispenser, Optometric Technician, Optical Technician, Contact Lens Technician

View report: Summary  Details  Custom

Tasks  |  Tools & Technology  |  Knowledge  |  Skills  |  Abilities  |  Work Activities  |  Work Context  |  Job Zone  |  Education  |  Interests  |  Work Styles  |  Work Values  |  Related Occupations  |  Wages & Employment  |  Job Openings  |  Additional Information

Tasks

  • Verify that finished lenses are ground to specifications.
  • Prepare work orders and instructions for grinding lenses and fabricating eyeglasses.
  • Measure clients' bridge and eye size, temple length, vertex distance, pupillary distance, and optical centers of eyes, using measuring devices.
  • Heat, shape, or bend plastic or metal frames to adjust eyeglasses to fit clients, using pliers and hands.
  • Evaluate prescriptions in conjunction with clients' vocational and avocational visual requirements.
  • Assist clients in selecting frames according to style and color, and ensure that frames are coordinated with facial and eye measurements and optical prescriptions.
  • Fabricate lenses to meet prescription specifications.
  • Maintain records of customer prescriptions, work orders, and payments.
  • Recommend specific lenses, lens coatings, and frames to suit client needs.
  • Instruct clients in how to wear and care for eyeglasses.

back to top

Tools & Technology

Tools used in this occupation:

Calipers — Dial calipers; Digital calipers
Eye charts or vision cards — Snellen eye charts
Hex keys — Hex wrenches
Lens measuring equipment — Contact lens thickness gauges; Lens analyzers; Lens clocks
Ophthalmic lensometers — Focimeters; Optometric lensometers
Opticians tools or accessories — Millimeter rules; Optical screwdrivers; Pickup screwdrivers; Pupillometers
Screwdrivers — Phillips head screwdrivers; Straight screwdrivers

Technology used in this occupation:

Data base user interface and query software — EZ-Zone Optizone Enterprise
Medical software — EMRlogic Systems ENTERPRISE Visions; First Insight MaximEyes; HealthLine Systems Eyecom; Specialist Data Solutions OctoPlus
Point of sale POS software

back to top

Knowledge

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.
English Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Sales and Marketing — Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
Mathematics — Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
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.
Clerical — Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.
Mechanical — Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
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.
Psychology — Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.

back to top

Skills

Speaking — Talking to others to convey information effectively.
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.
Reading Comprehension — Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
Active Learning — Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
Service Orientation — Actively looking for ways to help people.
Social Perceptiveness — Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
Writing — Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
Judgment and Decision Making — Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
Monitoring — Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

back to top

Abilities

Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
Oral Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
Speech Clarity — The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
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.
Speech Recognition — The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
Written Comprehension — The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
Written Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
Deductive Reasoning — The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
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.

back to top

Work Activities

Performing for or Working Directly with the Public — Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.
Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge — Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards — Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
Selling or Influencing Others — Convincing others to buy merchandise/goods or to otherwise change their minds or actions.
Documenting/Recording Information — Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships — Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates — Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material — Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.

back to top

Work Context

Telephone — How often do you have telephone conversations in this job?
Indoors, Environmentally Controlled — How often does this job require working indoors in environmentally controlled conditions?
Contact With Others — How much does this job require the worker to be in contact with others (face-to-face, by telephone, or otherwise) in order to perform it?
Face-to-Face Discussions — How often do you have to have face-to-face discussions with individuals or teams in this job?
Frequency of Decision Making — How frequently is the worker required to make decisions that affect other people, the financial resources, and/or the image and reputation of the organization?
Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — How important is being very exact or highly accurate in performing this job?
Deal With External Customers — How important is it to work with external customers or the public in this job?
Freedom to Make Decisions — How much decision making freedom, without supervision, does the job offer?
Physical Proximity — To what extent does this job require the worker to perform job tasks in close physical proximity to other people?
Spend Time Using Your Hands to Handle, Control, or Feel Objects, Tools, or Controls — How much does this job require using your hands to handle, control, or feel objects, tools or controls?

back to top

Job Zone

Title Job Zone Three: Medium Preparation Needed
Education Most occupations in this zone require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.
Related Experience Previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is required for these occupations. For example, an electrician must have completed three or four years of apprenticeship or several years of vocational training, and often must have passed a licensing exam, in order to perform the job.
Job Training Employees in these occupations usually need one or two years of training involving both on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.
Job Zone Examples These occupations usually involve using communication and organizational skills to coordinate, supervise, manage, or train others to accomplish goals. Examples include food service managers, electricians, agricultural technicians, legal secretaries, interviewers, and insurance sales agents.
SVP Range (6.0 to < 7.0)

There are 2 recognized apprenticeable specialties associated with this occupation:
Optician, Dispensing; Opthalmic Dispen Opt/Contact Lens

To learn about specific apprenticeship opportunities, please consult the U.S. Department of Labor State Apprenticeship Information external site website.

For general information about apprenticeships, training, and partnerships with business, visit the U.S. Department of Labor Office of Apprenticeship external site website.

back to top

Education


Percentage of Respondents
Education Level Required
43   Some college, no degree
33   High school diploma or equivalent
20   Associate's degree

back to top

Interests

Interest code: ECR

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.
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.
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.
Social — Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.

back to top

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.
Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical.
Cooperation — Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
Self Control — Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
Concern for Others — Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
Stress Tolerance — Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
Social Orientation — Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job.
Analytical Thinking — Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
Adaptability/Flexibility — Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.

back to top

Work Values

Independence — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
Relationships — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.
Support — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical.

back to top

Related Occupations

13-1022.00 Wholesale and Retail Buyers, Except Farm Products   Green Occupation Green
21-1093.00 Social and Human Service Assistants Bright Outlook
29-2052.00 Pharmacy Technicians   Bright Outlook Bright Outlook  
31-2021.00 Physical Therapist Assistants Bright Outlook
31-9091.00 Dental Assistants Bright Outlook
31-9092.00 Medical Assistants Bright Outlook
39-1021.00 First-Line Supervisors of Personal Service Workers
39-5094.00 Skincare Specialists Bright Outlook
41-2031.00 Retail Salespersons Bright Outlook
43-1011.00 First-Line Supervisors of Office and Administrative Support Workers Bright Outlook

back to top

Wages & Employment Trends

National

Median wages (2012) $16.03 hourly, $33,330 annual
Employment (2012) 68,000 employees
Projected growth (2012-2022) Much faster than average (22% or higher) Much faster than average (22% or higher)
Projected job openings (2012-2022) 35,300
Top industries (2012)

State & National

          CareerOneStop

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2012 wage data external site and 2012-2022 employment projections external site. "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2012-2022). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.

back to top

Job Openings on the Web

Find Jobs
for Opticians, Dispensing

          mySkills myFuture

State & National Job Banks

          CareerOneStop

back to top

Sources of Additional Information

Disclaimer: Sources are listed to provide additional information on related jobs, specialties, and/or industries. Links to non-DOL Internet sites are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement.

  • Opticians, Dispensing external site. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor. Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition.

back to top