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How to Become an Electro-Mechanical Technician

If you’re looking for a hands-on job where you can work with computers and machinery, then a position as an electro-mechanical technician may be an exciting career path for you. Electromechanical technicians design, test, and maintain different electro-mechanical equipment such as airplanes, submarines, and robots. Electromechanical technicians will need a background in mechanical or electrical engineering to be considered competitive applicants. 

Electro-mechanical technicians are primarily responsible for taking care of any mechanical or electrical equipment on a worksite. Many electro-mechanical technicians are found working for operations like oil rigs, deep ocean exploration, and hazardous waste removal to make sure their equipment is running properly. People in this role typically have an analytical mindset and an eye for detail, allowing them to diagnose potential problems with the equipment they work on.

This job opportunity offers you the chance to work alongside engineers and other technicians to create and program robots and robotic equipment. You will gain experience in the very fast-growing field of artificial intelligence and automation by designing, fixing, and maintaining these robotic systems.

Sample job description

Are you looking for a hands-on job? Are you interested in working with robots, unmanned vehicles, heavy machinery, and more? [Your Company Name] is hiring an electro-mechanical technician to help our company grow. Electro-mechanical technicians are analytical thinkers with great logical thinking skills and high technical and spatial reasoning skills. They design, test, and program robots and robotic equipment to take on tasks that are hazardous, complicated, or just plain impossible for humans. These technicians will generally work alongside engineers, developers, and other technicians and use a wide variety of physical and digital tools to diagnose, repair, maintain, and build machinery and its accompanying documentation.

Typical duties and responsibilities

  • Read blueprints, schematics, and diagrams to determine how to assemble parts, machines, and other equipment
  • Use specialized instruments to measure parts and ensure they meet specifications
  • Inspect parts for defects
  • Test the performance of electro-mechanical assemblies
  • Install electronic components using soldering equipment and hand tools
  • Operate, test and maintain robotic equipment
  • Analyze and record test results, and prepare written documentation

Education and experience

This position requires an associate degree or higher in electronic or mechanical technology.

Required skills and qualifications

  • Analytical, problem-solving, and critical-thinking skills
  • Teamwork and interpersonal communication skills
  • Mechanical aptitude and ability to understand complex diagrams and schematics
  • Strong hand-eye coordination and proficiency in using tools like soldering equipment
  • High-level organization skills

Preferred qualifications

  • Hands-on electrical and mechanical engineering/equipment experience at a previous position
  • Great attention to detail and self-driven
  • Multitasking & prioritizing in a high-pressure environment without a lot of direction or management
  • Professional verbal and written communication skills
  • Proficient with MS Office – Word, Excel, & PowerPoint
  • Experience with bench and automated test equipment

Typical work environment

Electro-mechanical engineers will find themselves in all sorts of different working environments. You might be fixing an unmanned reconnaissance aircraft, autonomous submarines, or heavy machinery on oil rigs, factories, warehouses, and more. Since you could be tasked with going onsite to fix a smart machine that does any task, there is no limit to where you might find yourself.

You may find yourself working in incredibly loud, caustic, and dangerous environments surrounded by potentially deadly equipment. The environments may vary, but these machines are typically in and around places too dangerous for people without PPE.

Typical hours

The work hours for an electro-mechanical technician are usually from 9 AM to 5 PM. However, many electro-mechanical technicians will work extra hours when nearing project deadlines or troubleshoot issues.

Available certifications

As electro-mechanical technicians work in a variety of industries, there are many institutions that offer certifications, including:

  • Master Certified Electronics Technician. The CETma is for techs that have 6 or more years of combined work and training. This master’s certification is meant to showcase the techs that demonstrate high proficiency in multiple fields of electronics. In order to qualify, one must have 6 unique certifications with no more than two originating from the same specialized category.
  • Industrial Electronics. The IND teaches basic concepts and knowledge in the field of industrial electronics. You’ll demonstrate you have a working knowledge of things like amplifiers, optical wiring, block diagrams and schematics, power supplies, test equipment, safety, communications, cabling, motors, troubleshooting, and much more.
  • Telecommunications Electronics Technician. This certification shows the holder has a working understanding of wired and wireless communication concepts. You’ll have a grasp of cables, telephony equipment, safety, distribution methods, testing equipment, optical wiring, and troubleshooting.
  • Senior Certified Electronics Technician. The CETsr provided by ETA International is for experienced technicians to stand out amongst the competition. This is the ultimate certification to obtain after getting some years of experience to demonstrate your prowess with electronics maintenance and repair.

Career path

An associate degree or higher in electronic or mechanical technology is required for this position. Several companies also require electro-mechanical technicians to obtain professional certifications such as Certified Control Systems Technician (CCST) from the International Society of Automation or in Electrical Power Testing from the National Institute For Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET) to qualify for some positions or career advancement.

US, Bureau of Labor Statistics’ job outlook

SOC Code: 17-3024

2020 Employment13,400
Projected Employment in 203013,100
Projected 2020-2030 Percentage Shift 2% decrease
Projected 2020-2030 Numeric Shift200 decrease

According to the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, one major trend affecting the engineering field is the use of artificial intelligence (AI) and automation. Software companies are using AI to help engineers select materials for projects to standardize products or perform clerical work. AI is also showing up in autonomous systems, such as self-driving cars and robotic manufacturing systems. Electro-mechanical technicians will be needed to help design, maintain, and repair some of these robotic systems.