Biomass Plant Technicians
51-8013.03

Control and monitor biomass plant activities and perform maintenance as needed.

Sample of reported job titles: Auxiliary Operator, Central Heating Plant Operator, Fuel Handler, Fuel Quality Technician (Fuel Quality Tech), Heating Plant Operator, Operations Technician (Operations Tech), Plant Operator, Plant Technician, Steam Plant Operator

Occupation-Specific Information

Tasks Save Table: XLSX CSV

ImportanceCategoryTask
94
 
Core
Operate biomass fuel-burning boiler or biomass fuel gasification system equipment in accordance with specifications or instructions.
91
 
Core
Perform tests of water chemistry in boilers.
90
 
Core
Operate high-pressure steam boiler or water chiller equipment for electrical cogeneration operations.
88
 
Core
Operate equipment to heat biomass, using knowledge of controls, combustion, and firing mechanisms.
88
 
Core
Operate equipment to start, stop, or regulate biomass-fueled generators, generator units, boilers, engines, or auxiliary systems.
86
 
Core
Inspect biomass power plant or processing equipment, recording or reporting damage and mechanical problems.
86
 
Core
Record or report operational data, such as readings on meters, instruments, and gauges.
84
 
Core
Operate valves, pumps, engines, or generators to control and adjust production of biofuels or biomass-fueled power.
83
 
Core
Calculate, measure, load, or mix biomass feedstock for power generation.
79
 
Core
Clean work areas to ensure compliance with safety regulations.
78
 
Core
Perform routine maintenance or make minor repairs to mechanical, electrical, or electronic equipment in biomass plants.
73
 
Core
Measure and monitor raw biomass feedstock, including wood, waste, or refuse materials.
72
 
Core
Calibrate liquid flow devices or meters, including fuel, chemical, and water meters.
68
 
Core
Assess quality of biomass feedstock.
68
 
Core
Read and interpret instruction manuals or technical drawings related to biomass-fueled power or biofuels production equipment or processes.
65
 
Core
Operate heavy equipment, such as bulldozers and front-end loaders.
72
 
Supplemental
Preprocess feedstock to prepare for biochemical or thermochemical production processes.
61
 
Supplemental
Manage parts and supply inventories for biomass plants.

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Technology Skills Save Table: XLSX CSV

Hot technology
Hot Technologies are requirements most frequently included across all employer job postings.

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Tools Used Save Table: XLSX CSV

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Occupational Requirements

Work Activities Save Table: XLSX CSV

ImportanceWork Activity
83
 
Controlling Machines and Processes — Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).
81
 
Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Materials — Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
81
 
Monitoring Processes, Materials, or Surroundings — Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
77
 
Documenting/Recording Information — Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
76
 
Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates — Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
76
 
Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
75
 
Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
75
 
Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
70
 
Analyzing Data or Information — Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
70
 
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.
67
 
Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment — Running, maneuvering, navigating, or driving vehicles or mechanized equipment, such as forklifts, passenger vehicles, aircraft, or watercraft.
64
 
Processing Information — Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
64
 
Training and Teaching Others — Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.
63
 
Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge — Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
61
 
Repairing and Maintaining Mechanical Equipment — Servicing, repairing, adjusting, and testing machines, devices, moving parts, and equipment that operate primarily on the basis of mechanical (not electronic) principles.
60
 
Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others — Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.
60
 
Working with Computers — Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
58
 
Estimating the Quantifiable Characteristics of Products, Events, or Information — Estimating sizes, distances, and quantities; or determining time, costs, resources, or materials needed to perform a work activity.
58
 
Handling and Moving Objects — Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.
57
 
Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships — Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
56
 
Guiding, Directing, and Motivating Subordinates — Providing guidance and direction to subordinates, including setting performance standards and monitoring performance.
56
 
Judging the Qualities of Objects, Services, or People — Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.
55
 
Coaching and Developing Others — Identifying the developmental needs of others and coaching, mentoring, or otherwise helping others to improve their knowledge or skills.
54
 
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 materials.
51
 
Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work — Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
49
 
Providing Consultation and Advice to Others — Providing guidance and expert advice to management or other groups on technical, systems-, or process-related topics.
49
 
Repairing and Maintaining Electronic Equipment — Servicing, repairing, calibrating, regulating, fine-tuning, or testing machines, devices, and equipment that operate primarily on the basis of electrical or electronic (not mechanical) principles.
48
 
Assisting and Caring for Others — Providing personal assistance, medical attention, emotional support, or other personal care to others such as coworkers, customers, or patients.
48
 
Coordinating the Work and Activities of Others — Getting members of a group to work together to accomplish tasks.
47
 
Scheduling Work and Activities — Scheduling events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others.
46
 
Developing and Building Teams — Encouraging and building mutual trust, respect, and cooperation among team members.
46
 
Performing Administrative Activities — Performing day-to-day administrative tasks such as maintaining information files and processing paperwork.
45
 
Developing Objectives and Strategies — Establishing long-range objectives and specifying the strategies and actions to achieve them.
44
 
Thinking Creatively — Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.
43
 
Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others — Handling complaints, settling disputes, and resolving grievances and conflicts, or otherwise negotiating with others.
40
 
Monitoring and Controlling Resources — Monitoring and controlling resources and overseeing the spending of money.
39
 
Communicating with People Outside the Organization — Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.
37
 
Drafting, Laying Out, and Specifying Technical Devices, Parts, and Equipment — Providing documentation, detailed instructions, drawings, or specifications to tell others about how devices, parts, equipment, or structures are to be fabricated, constructed, assembled, modified, maintained, or used.
29
 
Selling or Influencing Others — Convincing others to buy merchandise/goods or to otherwise change their minds or actions.
24
 
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.
21
 
Staffing Organizational Units — Recruiting, interviewing, selecting, hiring, and promoting employees in an organization.

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Detailed Work Activities Save Table: XLSX CSV

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Work Context Save Table: XLSX CSV

  • Wear Common Protective or Safety Equipment such as Safety Shoes, Glasses, Gloves, Hearing Protection, Hard Hats, or Life Jackets — How much does this job require wearing common protective or safety equipment such as safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hard hats or life jackets?
    • 96%
      96%
       
      responded: Every day
  • Face-to-Face Discussions — How often do you have to have face-to-face discussions with individuals or teams in this job?
    • 90%
      90%
       
      responded: Every day
  • Responsible for Others' Health and Safety — How much responsibility is there for the health and safety of others in this job?
    • 77%
      77%
       
      responded: Very high responsibility
    • 22%
      22%
       
      responded: High responsibility
  • Sounds, Noise Levels Are Distracting or Uncomfortable — How often does this job require working exposed to sounds and noise levels that are distracting or uncomfortable?
    • 89%
      89%
       
      responded: Every day
  • 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?
    • 73%
      73%
       
      responded: Every day
    • 23%
      23%
       
      responded: Once a week or more but not every day
  • Exposed to Hazardous Conditions — How often does this job require exposure to hazardous conditions?
    • 87%
      87%
       
      responded: Every day
  • Exposed to Contaminants — How often does this job require working exposed to contaminants (such as pollutants, gases, dust or odors)?
    • 72%
      72%
       
      responded: Every day
    • 11%
      11%
       
      responded: Once a month or more but not every week
  • Freedom to Make Decisions — How much decision making freedom, without supervision, does the job offer?
    • 65%
      65%
       
      responded: A lot of freedom
    • 25%
      25%
       
      responded: Some freedom
  • Exposed to High Places — How often does this job require exposure to high places?
    • 69%
      69%
       
      responded: Every day
    • 19%
      19%
       
      responded: Once a week or more but not every day
  • Work With Work Group or Team — How important is it to work with others in a group or team in this job?
    • 60%
      60%
       
      responded: Extremely important
    • 30%
      30%
       
      responded: Very important
  • Importance of Repeating Same Tasks — How important is repeating the same physical activities (e.g., key entry) or mental activities (e.g., checking entries in a ledger) over and over, without stopping, to performing this job?
    • 47%
      47%
       
      responded: Extremely important
    • 40%
      40%
       
      responded: Very important
    • 13%
      13%
       
      responded: Important
  • Consequence of Error — How serious would the result usually be if the worker made a mistake that was not readily correctable?
    • 63%
      63%
       
      responded: Extremely serious
    • 12%
      12%
       
      responded: Very serious
    • 13%
      13%
       
      responded: Serious
  • 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?
    • 61%
      61%
       
      responded: Constant contact with others
    • 17%
      17%
       
      responded: Contact with others most of the time
    • 14%
      14%
       
      responded: Occasional contact with others
  • Very Hot or Cold Temperatures — How often does this job require working in very hot (above 90 F degrees) or very cold (below 32 F degrees) temperatures?
    • 70%
      70%
       
      responded: Every day
    • 17%
      17%
       
      responded: Once a year or more but not every month
  • Duration of Typical Work Week — Number of hours typically worked in one week.
  • Exposed to Minor Burns, Cuts, Bites, or Stings — How often does this job require exposure to minor burns, cuts, bites, or stings?
    • 62%
      62%
       
      responded: Every day
    • 15%
      15%
       
      responded: Once a week or more but not every day
    • 12%
      12%
       
      responded: Once a year or more but not every month
  • Indoors, Environmentally Controlled — How often does this job require working indoors in environmentally controlled conditions?
    • 67%
      67%
       
      responded: Every day
    • 18%
      18%
       
      responded: Once a week or more but not every day
    • 14%
      14%
       
      responded: Never
  • Responsibility for Outcomes and Results — How responsible is the worker for work outcomes and results of other workers?
    • 59%
      59%
       
      responded: Very high responsibility
    • 22%
      22%
       
      responded: High responsibility
    • 11%
      11%
       
      responded: Moderate responsibility
  • Exposed to Hazardous Equipment — How often does this job require exposure to hazardous equipment?
    • 56%
      56%
       
      responded: Every day
    • 22%
      22%
       
      responded: Once a week or more but not every day
    • 14%
      14%
       
      responded: Once a month or more but not every week
  • Structured versus Unstructured Work — To what extent is this job structured for the worker, rather than allowing the worker to determine tasks, priorities, and goals?
    • 29%
      29%
       
      responded: A lot of freedom
    • 54%
      54%
       
      responded: Some freedom
    • 17%
      17%
       
      responded: Limited freedom
  • Telephone — How often do you have telephone conversations in this job?
    • 55%
      55%
       
      responded: Every day
    • 28%
      28%
       
      responded: Once a week or more but not every day
  • Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results — What results do your decisions usually have on other people or the image or reputation or financial resources of your employer?
    • 58%
      58%
       
      responded: Very important results
    • 12%
      12%
       
      responded: Important results
    • 11%
      11%
       
      responded: Moderate results
    • 18%
      18%
       
      responded: Minor results
  • Extremely Bright or Inadequate Lighting — How often does this job require working in extremely bright or inadequate lighting conditions?
    • 52%
      52%
       
      responded: Every day
    • 21%
      21%
       
      responded: Once a week or more but not every day
    • 12%
      12%
       
      responded: Once a month or more but not every week
  • Coordinate or Lead Others — How important is it to coordinate or lead others in accomplishing work activities in this job?
    • 46%
      46%
       
      responded: Extremely important
    • 18%
      18%
       
      responded: Important
  • Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — How important is being very exact or highly accurate in performing this job?
    • 35%
      35%
       
      responded: Extremely important
    • 26%
      26%
       
      responded: Very important
    • 38%
      38%
       
      responded: Important
  • Indoors, Not Environmentally Controlled — How often does this job require working indoors in non-controlled environmental conditions (e.g., warehouse without heat)?
    • 45%
      45%
       
      responded: Every day
    • 21%
      21%
       
      responded: Once a week or more but not every day
    • 24%
      24%
       
      responded: Once a year or more but not every month
  • Outdoors, Exposed to Weather — How often does this job require working outdoors, exposed to all weather conditions?
    • 46%
      46%
       
      responded: Every day
    • 11%
      11%
       
      responded: Once a week or more but not every day
    • 13%
      13%
       
      responded: Once a month or more but not every week
    • 24%
      24%
       
      responded: Once a year or more but not every month
  • Pace Determined by Speed of Equipment — How important is it to this job that the pace is determined by the speed of equipment or machinery? (This does not refer to keeping busy at all times on this job.)
    • 35%
      35%
       
      responded: Extremely important
    • 19%
      19%
       
      responded: Very important
    • 21%
      21%
       
      responded: Important
    • 17%
      17%
       
      responded: Fairly important
  • Letters and Memos — How often does the job require written letters and memos?
    • 28%
      28%
       
      responded: Every day
    • 34%
      34%
       
      responded: Once a week or more but not every day
    • 16%
      16%
       
      responded: Once a month or more but not every week
    • 11%
      11%
       
      responded: Once a year or more but not every month
    • 11%
      11%
       
      responded: Never
  • Spend Time Sitting — How much does this job require sitting?
    • 15%
      15%
       
      responded: Continually or almost continually
    • 29%
      29%
       
      responded: More than half the time
    • 50%
      50%
       
      responded: About half the time
  • Outdoors, Under Cover — How often does this job require working outdoors, under cover (e.g., structure with roof but no walls)?
    • 39%
      39%
       
      responded: Every day
    • 17%
      17%
       
      responded: Once a week or more but not every day
    • 19%
      19%
       
      responded: Once a year or more but not every month
    • 15%
      15%
       
      responded: Never
  • Time Pressure — How often does this job require the worker to meet strict deadlines?
    • 37%
      37%
       
      responded: Every day
    • 12%
      12%
       
      responded: Once a week or more but not every day
    • 21%
      21%
       
      responded: Once a month or more but not every week
    • 19%
      19%
       
      responded: Once a year or more but not every month
    • 11%
      11%
       
      responded: Never
  • 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?
    • 26%
      26%
       
      responded: Continually or almost continually
    • 15%
      15%
       
      responded: More than half the time
    • 25%
      25%
       
      responded: About half the time
    • 34%
      34%
       
      responded: Less than half the time
  • Degree of Automation — How automated is the job?
    • 33%
      33%
       
      responded: Highly automated
    • 61%
      61%
       
      responded: Moderately automated
  • Electronic Mail — How often do you use electronic mail in this job?
    • 48%
      48%
       
      responded: Every day
    • 32%
      32%
       
      responded: Never
  • Physical Proximity — To what extent does this job require the worker to perform job tasks in close physical proximity to other people?
    • 11%
      11%
       
      responded: Very close (near touching)
    • 24%
      24%
       
      responded: Moderately close (at arm's length)
    • 29%
      29%
       
      responded: Slightly close (e.g., shared office)
  • Cramped Work Space, Awkward Positions — How often does this job require working in cramped work spaces that requires getting into awkward positions?
    • 14%
      14%
       
      responded: Every day
    • 21%
      21%
       
      responded: Once a week or more but not every day
    • 12%
      12%
       
      responded: Once a month or more but not every week
    • 52%
      52%
       
      responded: Once a year or more but not every month
  • Deal With Unpleasant or Angry People — How frequently does the worker have to deal with unpleasant, angry, or discourteous individuals as part of the job requirements?
    • 16%
      16%
       
      responded: Every day
    • 17%
      17%
       
      responded: Once a week or more but not every day
    • 14%
      14%
       
      responded: Once a month or more but not every week
    • 46%
      46%
       
      responded: Once a year or more but not every month
  • In an Enclosed Vehicle or Equipment — How often does this job require working in a closed vehicle or equipment (e.g., car)?
    • 16%
      16%
       
      responded: Every day
    • 21%
      21%
       
      responded: Once a week or more but not every day
    • 18%
      18%
       
      responded: Once a month or more but not every week
    • 25%
      25%
       
      responded: Once a year or more but not every month
    • 20%
      20%
       
      responded: Never
  • Spend Time Walking and Running — How much does this job require walking and running?
    • 21%
      21%
       
      responded: Continually or almost continually
    • 26%
      26%
       
      responded: About half the time
    • 39%
      39%
       
      responded: Less than half the time
  • Spend Time Making Repetitive Motions — How much does this job require making repetitive motions?
    • 11%
      11%
       
      responded: More than half the time
    • 14%
      14%
       
      responded: About half the time
    • 40%
      40%
       
      responded: Less than half the time
    • 14%
      14%
       
      responded: Never
  • In an Open Vehicle or Equipment — How often does this job require working in an open vehicle or equipment (e.g., tractor)?
    • 19%
      19%
       
      responded: Once a week or more but not every day
    • 28%
      28%
       
      responded: Once a month or more but not every week
    • 21%
      21%
       
      responded: Once a year or more but not every month
    • 21%
      21%
       
      responded: Never
  • Level of Competition — To what extent does this job require the worker to compete or to be aware of competitive pressures?
    • 33%
      33%
       
      responded: Highly competitive
    • 23%
      23%
       
      responded: Moderately competitive
    • 18%
      18%
       
      responded: Slightly competitive
    • 23%
      23%
       
      responded: Not at all competitive
  • Frequency of Conflict Situations — How often are there conflict situations the employee has to face in this job?
  • Spend Time Standing — How much does this job require standing?
    • 50%
      50%
       
      responded: About half the time
    • 44%
      44%
       
      responded: Less than half the time
  • Spend Time Climbing Ladders, Scaffolds, or Poles — How much does this job require climbing ladders, scaffolds, or poles?
    • 20%
      20%
       
      responded: Continually or almost continually
    • 72%
      72%
       
      responded: Less than half the time
  • Wear Specialized Protective or Safety Equipment such as Breathing Apparatus, Safety Harness, Full Protection Suits, or Radiation Protection — How much does this job require wearing specialized protective or safety equipment such as breathing apparatus, safety harness, full protection suits, or radiation protection?
    • 13%
      13%
       
      responded: Every day
    • 13%
      13%
       
      responded: Once a week or more but not every day
    • 56%
      56%
       
      responded: Once a year or more but not every month
    • 17%
      17%
       
      responded: Never
  • Spend Time Bending or Twisting the Body — How much does this job require bending or twisting your body?
    • 11%
      11%
       
      responded: About half the time
    • 68%
      68%
       
      responded: Less than half the time
  • Deal With External Customers — How important is it to work with external customers or the public in this job?
    • 19%
      19%
       
      responded: Fairly important
    • 33%
      33%
       
      responded: Not important at all
  • Spend Time Kneeling, Crouching, Stooping, or Crawling — How much does this job require kneeling, crouching, stooping or crawling?
    • 11%
      11%
       
      responded: About half the time
    • 78%
      78%
       
      responded: Less than half the time
  • Exposed to Whole Body Vibration — How often does this job require exposure to whole body vibration (e.g., operate a jackhammer)?
    • 12%
      12%
       
      responded: Once a month or more but not every week
    • 37%
      37%
       
      responded: Once a year or more but not every month
    • 37%
      37%
       
      responded: Never
  • Spend Time Keeping or Regaining Balance — How much does this job require keeping or regaining your balance?
    • 42%
      42%
       
      responded: Less than half the time
    • 54%
      54%
       
      responded: Never
  • Exposed to Disease or Infections — How often does this job require exposure to disease/infections?
  • Public Speaking — How often do you have to perform public speaking in this job?
    • 15%
      15%
       
      responded: Once a year or more but not every month
    • 83%
      83%
       
      responded: Never
  • Exposed to Radiation — How often does this job require exposure to radiation?
    • 96%
      96%
       
      responded: Never
  • Deal With Physically Aggressive People — How frequently does this job require the worker to deal with physical aggression of violent individuals?
    • 95%
      95%
       
      responded: Never
  • Work Schedules — How regular are the work schedules for this job?
    • 99%
      99%
       
      responded: Regular (established routine, set schedule)

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Experience Requirements

Job Zone Save Table: XLSX CSV

Title
Job Zone Two: Some Preparation Needed
Education
These occupations usually require a high school diploma.
Related Experience
Some previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is usually needed. For example, a teller would benefit from experience working directly with the public.
Job Training
Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.
Job Zone Examples
These occupations often involve using your knowledge and skills to help others. Examples include orderlies, counter and rental clerks, customer service representatives, security guards, upholsterers, tellers, and dental laboratory technicians.
SVP Range
3 months to 1 year of preparation (4.0 to < 6.0)

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Training & Credentials

State training
Local training
Certifications
State licenses
Apprenticeships
Have a career path or location in mind? Visit Apprenticeship.gov external site to find apprenticeship opportunities near you.

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Worker Requirements

Skills Save Table: XLSX CSV

ImportanceSkill
75
 
Operations Monitoring — Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
72
 
Operation and Control — Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
60
 
Monitoring — Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
53
 
Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions, or approaches to problems.
53
 
Judgment and Decision Making — Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
50
 
Active Learning — Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
50
 
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.
50
 
Complex Problem Solving — Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
50
 
Coordination — Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
50
 
Equipment Maintenance — Performing routine maintenance on equipment and determining when and what kind of maintenance is needed.
50
 
Learning Strategies — Selecting and using training/instructional methods and procedures appropriate for the situation when learning or teaching new things.
50
 
Quality Control Analysis — Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
50
 
Reading Comprehension — Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work-related documents.
50
 
Speaking — Talking to others to convey information effectively.
50
 
Time Management — Managing one's own time and the time of others.
50
 
Writing — Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
44
 
Equipment Selection — Determining the kind of tools and equipment needed to do a job.
44
 
Instructing — Teaching others how to do something.
44
 
Mathematics — Using mathematics to solve problems.
44
 
Negotiation — Bringing others together and trying to reconcile differences.
44
 
Repairing — Repairing machines or systems using the needed tools.
44
 
Service Orientation — Actively looking for ways to help people.
44
 
Social Perceptiveness — Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
44
 
Systems Analysis — Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.
44
 
Systems Evaluation — Identifying measures or indicators of system performance and the actions needed to improve or correct performance, relative to the goals of the system.
44
 
Troubleshooting — Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.
41
 
Persuasion — Persuading others to change their minds or behavior.
31
 
Science — Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
28
 
Management of Personnel Resources — Motivating, developing, and directing people as they work, identifying the best people for the job.
28
 
Operations Analysis — Analyzing needs and product requirements to create a design.
25
 
Management of Material Resources — Obtaining and seeing to the appropriate use of equipment, facilities, and materials needed to do certain work.
22
 
Management of Financial Resources — Determining how money will be spent to get the work done, and accounting for these expenditures.
22
 
Technology Design — Generating or adapting equipment and technology to serve user needs.
19
 
Programming — Writing computer programs for various purposes.
3
 
Installation — Installing equipment, machines, wiring, or programs to meet specifications.

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Knowledge Save Table: XLSX CSV

ImportanceKnowledge
73
 
Mechanical — Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
61
 
Chemistry — Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.
57
 
English Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
57
 
Production and Processing — Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
53
 
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.
52
 
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.
51
 
Computers and Electronics — Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
47
 
Mathematics — Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
46
 
Public Safety and Security — Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
42
 
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.
41
 
Physics — Knowledge and prediction of physical principles, laws, their interrelationships, and applications to understanding fluid, material, and atmospheric dynamics, and mechanical, electrical, atomic and sub-atomic structures and processes.
37
 
Administrative — Knowledge of administrative and office procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and workplace terminology.
37
 
Law and Government — Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.
36
 
Building and Construction — Knowledge of materials, methods, and the tools involved in the construction or repair of houses, buildings, or other structures such as highways and roads.
33
 
Design — Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
31
 
Telecommunications — Knowledge of transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.
28
 
Personnel and Human Resources — Knowledge of principles and procedures for personnel recruitment, selection, training, compensation and benefits, labor relations and negotiation, and personnel information systems.
28
 
Transportation — Knowledge of principles and methods for moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road, including the relative costs and benefits.
24
 
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.
23
 
Biology — Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment.
23
 
Communications and Media — Knowledge of media production, communication, and dissemination techniques and methods. This includes alternative ways to inform and entertain via written, oral, and visual media.
23
 
Economics and Accounting — Knowledge of economic and accounting principles and practices, the financial markets, banking, and the analysis and reporting of financial data.
23
 
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.
14
 
Geography — Knowledge of principles and methods for describing the features of land, sea, and air masses, including their physical characteristics, locations, interrelationships, and distribution of plant, animal, and human life.
13
 
Philosophy and Theology — Knowledge of different philosophical systems and religions. This includes their basic principles, values, ethics, ways of thinking, customs, practices, and their impact on human culture.
11
 
Sociology and Anthropology — Knowledge of group behavior and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures, and their history and origins.
10
 
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.
6
 
Therapy and Counseling — Knowledge of principles, methods, and procedures for diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and for career counseling and guidance.
5
 
History and Archeology — Knowledge of historical events and their causes, indicators, and effects on civilizations and cultures.
2
 
Foreign Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of a foreign (non-English) language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition and grammar, and pronunciation.
1
 
Medicine and Dentistry — Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.
0
 
Fine Arts — Knowledge of the theory and techniques required to compose, produce, and perform works of music, dance, visual arts, drama, and sculpture.
0
 
Food Production — Knowledge of techniques and equipment for planting, growing, and harvesting food products (both plant and animal) for consumption, including storage/handling techniques.

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Education

How much education does a new hire need to perform a job in this occupation? Respondents said:

  • 47%
     
    responded: High school diploma or equivalent requiredmore info
  • 22%
     
    responded: Post-secondary certificate required
  • 10%
     
    responded: Some college, no degree requiredmore info

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Worker Characteristics

Abilities Save Table: XLSX CSV

ImportanceAbility
72
 
Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
69
 
Control Precision — The ability to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions.
69
 
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 that there is a problem.
60
 
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).
56
 
Deductive Reasoning — The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
56
 
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.
56
 
Perceptual Speed — The ability to quickly and accurately compare similarities and differences among sets of letters, numbers, objects, pictures, or patterns. The things to be compared may be presented at the same time or one after the other. This ability also includes comparing a presented object with a remembered object.
56
 
Reaction Time — The ability to quickly respond (with the hand, finger, or foot) to a signal (sound, light, picture) when it appears.
56
 
Written Comprehension — The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
53
 
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.
53
 
Far Vision — The ability to see details at a distance.
53
 
Inductive Reasoning — The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
53
 
Rate Control — The ability to time your movements or the movement of a piece of equipment in anticipation of changes in the speed and/or direction of a moving object or scene.
53
 
Selective Attention — The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.
53
 
Visual Color Discrimination — The ability to match or detect differences between colors, including shades of color and brightness.
53
 
Visualization — The ability to imagine how something will look after it is moved around or when its parts are moved or rearranged.
50
 
Auditory Attention — The ability to focus on a single source of sound in the presence of other distracting sounds.
50
 
Hearing Sensitivity — The ability to detect or tell the differences between sounds that vary in pitch and loudness.
50
 
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.
50
 
Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
50
 
Oral Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
50
 
Speech Clarity — The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
50
 
Time Sharing — The ability to shift back and forth between two or more activities or sources of information (such as speech, sounds, touch, or other sources).
50
 
Written Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
47
 
Category Flexibility — The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
47
 
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.
47
 
Flexibility of Closure — The ability to identify or detect a known pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) that is hidden in other distracting material.
47
 
Speech Recognition — The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
44
 
Depth Perception — The ability to judge which of several objects is closer or farther away from you, or to judge the distance between you and an object.
44
 
Fluency of Ideas — The ability to come up with a number of ideas about a topic (the number of ideas is important, not their quality, correctness, or creativity).
44
 
Originality — The ability to come up with unusual or clever ideas about a given topic or situation, or to develop creative ways to solve a problem.
44
 
Response Orientation — The ability to choose quickly between two or more movements in response to two or more different signals (lights, sounds, pictures). It includes the speed with which the correct response is started with the hand, foot, or other body part.
44
 
Speed of Closure — The ability to quickly make sense of, combine, and organize information into meaningful patterns.
44
 
Static Strength — The ability to exert maximum muscle force to lift, push, pull, or carry objects.
38
 
Memorization — The ability to remember information such as words, numbers, pictures, and procedures.
38
 
Trunk Strength — The ability to use your abdominal and lower back muscles to support part of the body repeatedly or continuously over time without "giving out" or fatiguing.
35
 
Extent Flexibility — The ability to bend, stretch, twist, or reach with your body, arms, and/or legs.
35
 
Wrist-Finger Speed — The ability to make fast, simple, repeated movements of the fingers, hands, and wrists.
31
 
Mathematical Reasoning — The ability to choose the right mathematical methods or formulas to solve a problem.
31
 
Number Facility — The ability to add, subtract, multiply, or divide quickly and correctly.
31
 
Speed of Limb Movement — The ability to quickly move the arms and legs.
31
 
Stamina — The ability to exert yourself physically over long periods of time without getting winded or out of breath.
28
 
Gross Body Coordination — The ability to coordinate the movement of your arms, legs, and torso together when the whole body is in motion.
28
 
Gross Body Equilibrium — The ability to keep or regain your body balance or stay upright when in an unstable position.
28
 
Sound Localization — The ability to tell the direction from which a sound originated.
25
 
Dynamic Strength — The ability to exert muscle force repeatedly or continuously over time. This involves muscular endurance and resistance to muscle fatigue.
25
 
Glare Sensitivity — The ability to see objects in the presence of a glare or bright lighting.
25
 
Night Vision — The ability to see under low-light conditions.
25
 
Peripheral Vision — The ability to see objects or movement of objects to one's side when the eyes are looking ahead.
25
 
Spatial Orientation — The ability to know your location in relation to the environment or to know where other objects are in relation to you.
13
 
Explosive Strength — The ability to use short bursts of muscle force to propel oneself (as in jumping or sprinting), or to throw an object.
0
 
Dynamic Flexibility — The ability to quickly and repeatedly bend, stretch, twist, or reach out with your body, arms, and/or legs.

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Interests Save Table: XLSX CSV

Occupational InterestInterest
83
 
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.
50
 
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.
33
 
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.
17
 
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.
6
 
Social — Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.
0
 
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.

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Work Values Save Table: XLSX CSV

ExtentWork Value
50
 
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.
50
 
Working Conditions — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions. Corresponding needs are Activity, Compensation, Independence, Security, Variety and Working Conditions.
45
 
Achievement — Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
33
 
Independence — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
33
 
Recognition — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer advancement, potential for leadership, and are often considered prestigious. Corresponding needs are Advancement, Authority, Recognition and Social Status.
28
 
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.

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Work Styles Save Table: XLSX CSV

ImportanceWork Style
78
 
Dependability — Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
75
 
Attention to Detail — Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
75
 
Cooperation — Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
72
 
Stress Tolerance — Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high-stress situations.
65
 
Adaptability/Flexibility — Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
65
 
Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
65
 
Self-Control — Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
64
 
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.
63
 
Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical.
63
 
Persistence — Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
61
 
Achievement/Effort — Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
61
 
Analytical Thinking — Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
58
 
Concern for Others — Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
57
 
Leadership — Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction.
48
 
Social Orientation — Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job.
46
 
Innovation — Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.

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Workforce Characteristics

Wages & Employment Trends

Median wage data for Power Plant Operators.
Employment data for Power Plant Operators.
Industry data for Power Plant Operators.
Median wages (2021)
$38.87 hourly, $80,850 annual
State wages
Local wages
Employment (2021)
29,200 employees
Projected growth (2021-2031)
Decline (-2% or lower)
Projected job openings (2021-2031)
2,100
State trends
Top industries (2021)
Utilities (71% employed in this sector)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2021 wage data external site and 2021-2031 employment projections external site. “Projected growth” represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2021-2031). “Projected job openings” represent openings due to growth and replacement.

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Job Openings on the Web

State job openings
Local job openings

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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.

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