What Do Separating Machine Operators Do (including Their Typical Day At Work)

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Job Description, Daily Responsibilities, and Work Life.

Job Description

Separating Machine Operators set up, operate, or tend continuous flow or vat-type equipment; filter presses; shaker screens; centrifuges; condenser tubes; precipitating, fermenting, or evaporating tanks; scrubbing towers; or batch stills. These machines extract, sort, or separate liquids, gases, or solids from other materials to recover a refined product. Includes dairy processing equipment operators. They also dump, pour, or load specified amounts of refined or unrefined materials into equipment or containers for further processing or storage.

Other tasks include:

  • Operate machines to process materials in compliance with applicable safety, energy, or environmental regulations.
  • Monitor material flow or instruments such as temperature or pressure gauges, indicators, or meters to ensure optimal processing conditions.
  • Turn valves or move controls to admit, drain, separate, filter, clarify, mix, or transfer materials.
  • Set up or adjust machine controls to regulate conditions such as material flow, temperature, or pressure.
  • Examine samples to verify qualities such as clarity, cleanliness, consistency, dryness, or texture.
  • Start agitators, shakers, conveyors, pumps, or centrifuge machines.

We asked Separating Machine Operators how satisfied they are with their job. Here is what they said.

Job satisfaction

77%

How meaningful is this job

61%


77% of them said they were satisfied with their job and 61% said they find that their job makes the world a better place or helps to make someone else’s life better.



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Typical Day At Work

On a daily basis, Separating Machine Operators monitor material flow or instruments such as temperature or pressure gauges, indicators, or meters to ensure optimal processing conditions. They inspect machines or equipment for hazards, operating efficiency, malfunctions, wear, or leaks.

A typical day for a Separating, Filtering, Clarifying, Precipitating and Still Machine Setter, Operator and Tender will also include:

  • Maintain logs of instrument readings, test results, or shift production for entry in computer databases.
  • Operate machines to process materials in compliance with applicable safety, energy, or environmental regulations.
  • Test samples to determine viscosity, acidity, specific gravity, or degree of concentration, using test equipment such as viscometers, pH meters, or hydrometers.
  • Communicate processing instructions to other workers.
  • Examine samples to verify qualities such as clarity, cleanliness, consistency, dryness, or texture.

We asked some Separating Machine Operators a few questions to find out what else does their work day look like. Here is what we found.

Do you have telephone conversations everyday in this job?48% said yes
How important is it to work in a team in this job?28% said very important
Do you have group discussions everyday in this job?86% said yes
Do you talk or work with customers everyday in this job?6% said yes
Do you have to deal with angry customers everyday in this job?20% said yes
Do you have to make decisions everyday in this job?54% said yes

Other responsibilities

Besides their typical day, Separating Machine Operators also connect pipes between vats and processing equipment. They may also remove full containers from discharge outlets and replace them with empty containers.

On a weekly to monthly basis, Separating Machine Operators Remove clogs, defects, or impurities from machines, tanks, conveyors, screens, or other processing equipment. They might also Clean or sterilize tanks, screens, inflow pipes, production areas, or equipment, using hoses, brushes, scrapers, or chemical solutions.

In addition, they Assemble fittings, valves, bowls, plates, disks, impeller shafts, or other parts to prepare equipment for operation.

Although specific duties may vary, many of them Install, maintain, or repair hoses, pumps, filters, or screens to maintain processing equipment, using hand tools.

To some Separating Machine Operators, it is also their responsibility to Turn valves to pump sterilizing solutions or rinse water through pipes or equipment or to spray vats with atomizers.


Working life

Working hours

Standard 40 hour work week

Working schedule

Regular schedule like a 9 to 5

In a typical work week as a Separating, Filtering, Clarifying, Precipitating and Still Machine Setter, Operator and Tender, you can expect to work 40 hour work week.

Do Separating Machine Operators work in an office-style work environment?

Every day
52%


Never
38%


Do Separating Machine Operators work outdoors?

Never
71%


Once a month
14%



Is this right for me

Best personality for this career

The Builders and The Organizers

People who are suitable for this job tends to like work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They like working with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery..

They also like following set procedures and routines. They like working with data and details more than with ideas.

You can read more about these career personality types here.




Learn more about Separating Machine Operators

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Additional resources

http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes519012.htm


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