What Do Water And Wastewater Treatment Plant And System Operators Do

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Salary, Job Description, How To Become One, and Quiz

Water And Wastewater Treatment Plant And System Operators

Water And Wastewater Treatment Plant And System Operators operate or control an entire process or system of machines, often through the use of control boards, to transfer or treat water or wastewater.

Salary
$51890
Becoming One
Medium
Education
No degree required
Job Satisfaction
Job Growth

Personality





Find a job you love and you will never work a day in your life.Confucius

What they do

Water And Wastewater Treatment Plant And System Operators operate or control an entire process or system of machines, often through the use of control boards, to transfer or treat water or wastewater.

  • Add chemicals, such as ammonia, chlorine, or lime, to disinfect and deodorize water and other liquids.
  • Collect and test water and sewage samples, using test equipment and color analysis standards.
  • Record operational data, personnel attendance, or meter and gauge readings on specified forms.
  • Operate and adjust controls on equipment to purify and clarify water, process or dispose of sewage, and generate power.

Typical day

On a daily basis, WWTP Operators maintain, repair, and lubricate equipment, using hand tools and power tools. They inspect equipment or monitor operating conditions, meters, and gauges to determine load requirements and detect malfunctions.

A typical day for a Water and Wastewater Treatment Plant and System Operator will also include:

  • Direct and coordinate plant workers engaged in routine operations and maintenance activities.
  • Collect and test water and sewage samples, using test equipment and color analysis standards.
  • Operate and adjust controls on equipment to purify and clarify water, process or dispose of sewage, and generate power.
  • Add chemicals, such as ammonia, chlorine, or lime, to disinfect and deodorize water and other liquids.
  • Record operational data, personnel attendance, or meter and gauge readings on specified forms.

Other responsibilities

Besides their typical day, WWTP Operators also clean and maintain tanks, filter beds, and other work areas, using hand tools and power tools. They may also maintain, repair, and lubricate equipment, using hand tools and power tools.

On a weekly to monthly basis, WWTP Operators direct and coordinate plant workers engaged in routine operations and maintenance activities. They might also inspect equipment or monitor operating conditions, meters, and gauges to determine load requirements and detect malfunctions.

In addition, they operate and adjust controls on equipment to purify and clarify water, process or dispose of sewage, and generate power.

Although specific duties may vary, many of them collect and test water and sewage samples, using test equipment and color analysis standards.

To some WWTP Operators, it is also their responsibility to record operational data, personnel attendance, or meter and gauge readings on specified forms.

Freedom to make decisions

How much decision making freedom does this job offer?

No freedom
0%

Very little freedom
5%

Limited freedom
3%

Some freedom
33%

A lot of freedom
59%

Structured vs unstructured work

To what extent is this job structured for you versus allowing you to determine your own tasks, priorities, and goals?

No freedom
0%

Very little freedom
0%

Limited freedom
0%

Some freedom
37%

A lot of freedom
62%


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What is the job like

Job satisfaction

High

Is this job meaningful

Very High

72% said they were satisfied with their job and 87% said they found their job meaningful.


Pros

Suitable for people who like practical and hands-on work.

Suitable for people who want to work in a supportive work environment.

This career is perfect for people who love to work outdoors.

It is not too difficult to get into this career. Previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is required for this career.

Cons

Not suitable for people who like to help and teach others.

Salary is below average.

How much do they make

Average salary

$51890 per year

Average hourly wage

$25 per hour

Entry-level Water And Wastewater Treatment Plant And System Operators with little to no experience can expect to make anywhere between $29,730 to $37,830 per year or $14 to $18 per hour.

Salary range Hourly Annual
Highest (Top 10%) $38 $79,620
Senior (Top 25%) $30 $62,890
Middle (Mid 50%) $24 $49,090
Junior (Bottom 25%) $18 $37,830
No experience (Bottom 10%) $14 $29,730

What is the work day like

Working hours

Less than 40 hours
0%

40 hours
74%

More than 40 hours
26%

Working schedule

78%

22%

0%

Work with group or team

How important is it to work with others in a group or team in this job?

Not important at all
0%

Fairly important
12%

Important
6%

Very important
51%

Extremely important
31%

Deal with external customers

How important is it to work with customers in this job?

Not important at all
19%

Fairly important
13%

Important
34%

Very important
12%

Extremely important
22%

Manage or lead others

How important is it to coordinate or lead others in completing work activities in this job?

Not important at all
12%

Fairly important
11%

Important
25%

Very important
30%

Extremely important
21%

Email

How often do you use email in this job?

Once a week
65%

Every day
25%

Telephone

How often do you have telephone conversations in this job?

Once a week
39%

Every day
59%

Group discussions

How often do you have group discussions in this job?

Once a week
12%

Every day
81%

Public speaking

How often does this job require you to do public speaking?

Never
53%

Once a year
35%

Once a month
11%

Once a week
2%

Every day
0%

Frequency of conflict situations

How often are there conflict situations in this job?

Never
0%

Once a year
64%

Once a month
24%

Once a week
12%

Every day
1%

Dealing with angry people

How often do you have to deal with angry, unpleasant, or discourteous individuals in this job?

Never
18%

Once a year
49%

Once a month
17%

Once a week
11%

Every day
6%

Dealing with physically aggressive people

How often do you have to deal with physically aggressive people in this job?

Never
78%

Once a year
21%

Once a month
0%

Once a week
0%

Every day
0%

Level of competition

How much competitive pressure is in this job?

Not competitive at all
18%

Slightly competitive
11%

Moderately competitive
40%

Highly competitive
21%

Extremely competitive
11%

Repetition in this job

How important is repeating the same type of task over and over in this job?

Not important at all
10%

Fairly important
2%

Important
17%

Very Important
28%

Extremely Important
42%

Impact of decisions on co-workers or company results

What results do your decisions usually have on other people or the reputation or financial resources of your employer?

No impact
0%

Minor impact
22%

Moderate impact
10%

Important impact
25%

Very important impact
44%

Frequency of decision making

How frequently do you have to make decisions that affect other people, the financial resources, and/or the reputation of the company?

Never
2%

Once a year
19%

Once a month
1%

Once a week
21%

Every day
57%

Responsibility for others’ health and safety

How much responsibility is there for the health and safety of others in this job?

No responsibility
1%

Limited responsibility
3%

Moderate responsibility
26%

High responsibility
32%

Very high responsibility
37%

Responsibility for outcomes and results

How much responsibility is there for the work outcomes and results of other workers?

No responsibility
11%

Limited responsibility
13%

Moderate responsibility
45%

High responsibility
14%

Very high responsibility
18%

What is the work environment like

Office-style environment

Indoors in an environmentally controlled condition

Never
11%

Once a year or more
0%

Once a month or more
7%

Once a week or more
10%

Every day
72%

Warehouse-style environment

Indoors in a non-controlled environmental condition such as a warehouse

Never
2%

Once a year or more
11%

Once a month or more
1%

Once a week or more
39%

Every day
47%

Outdoors

Outdoors exposed to all weather conditions

Never
11%

Once a year or more
2%

Once a month or more
11%

Once a week or more
30%

Every day
46%

Outdoors – Under Cover

Outdoors but under cover (e.g. structure with roof but no walls)

Never
21%

Once a year or more
11%

Once a month or more
16%

Once a week or more
30%

Every day
22%

How to become one

Difficulty to become one

Medium
You will need previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience. Most careers in this difficulty category require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an Associate’s degree, and one or two years of on-the-job training. Similar careers include Travel Agents, Agricultural Technicians, Court Reports, and Medical Assistants.

Required level of education

What level of education do you need to perform the job?

Less than a High School Diploma
0%

High School Diploma or equivalent
42%

Post-Secondary Certificate
25%

Some College Courses
21%

Associate’s Degree or similar
13%

Bachelor’s Degree
1%

Post-Baccalaureate Certificate
0%

Master’s Degree
0%

Post-Master’s Certificate
0%

First Professional Degree
0%

Doctoral Degree
0%

Post-Doctoral Training
0%

Relevant work experience

How much related work experience do you need to get hired for the job?

None
11%

1 month
1%

1 to 3 months
0%

3 to 6 months
0%

6 months to 1 year
32%

1 to 2 years
26%

2 to 4 years
2%

4 to 6 years
21%

6 to 8 years
1%

8 to 10 years
0%

Over 10 years
5%

On The Job Training

How much on the job training do you need to perform the job?

None or short demonstration
0%

1 month
10%

1 to 3 months
13%

3 to 6 months
23%

6 months to 1 year
28%

1 to 2 years
21%

2 to 4 years
0%

4 to 10 years
5%

Over 10 years
0%

Should you become one

Best personality for this career
The Builder

People with this personality type likes practical and hands-on work. They prefer working with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery.

90%

33%

19%

14%

29%

52%

You can read more about these career personality types here.

People who are suitable for this job tend 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.

Take this quiz to see if this is the right career for you.

FAQ


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