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Computer Operators

Monitor and control electronic computer and peripheral electronic data processing equipment to process business, scientific, engineering, and other data according to operating instructions. Monitor and respond to operating and error messages. May enter commands at a computer terminal and set controls on computer and peripheral devices.   (O'Net 43-9011.00)

 
Reported job titles:   Card Sorter, Card Tape Converter Operator, Computer Console Operator, Computer Operator, Computer Peripheral Equipment Operator, Computer Programmer   (view all job titles)
 
  • Career Video
  • Wages
  • Employment Trends
  • Industries of Employment
  • Tasks
  • Knowledge
  • Skills
  • Abilities
  • Work Activities
  • Interests
  • Work Styles
  • License Information
  • Education & Training Requirements
  • Schools
  • Other Resources
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    Career Video
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    Wages
    for Computer Operators
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     Location Pay
    Period
    2016
    Percentile Wages Average
    Wage
    10% 25% 50%
    Median
    75% 90%
     Vermont Hourly $ 13.28   $ 16.70   $ 21.53   $ 27.03   $ 28.59   $ 21.12  
    Yearly $27,620   $34,740   $44,780   $56,230   $59,470   $43,930  
     
     Southern Vermont Balance of State Hourly $ 16.45   $ 17.92   $ 21.81   $ 27.87   $ 27.89   $ 22.12  
    Yearly $34,220   $37,270   $45,370   $57,980   $58,000   $46,020  
     
     Northern Vermont Balance of State Hourly $ 14.14   $ 16.04   $ 18.72   $ 22.48   $ 26.05   $ 19.30  
    Yearly $29,410   $33,360   $38,930   $46,760   $54,190   $40,150  
     
    What are Percentile Wages?
    source: Occupational Employment Statistics, Vermont Labor Market Information, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, released April 2017.
     


    Employment Trends
    for Computer Operators
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    Location Employment Annual % change
    (compounded)
    Annual job openings
    (due to growth and
    net replacements)
    2014 2024
    Vermont 59 49 -1.8% 0
    source: Employment Projections, Vermont Economic & Labor Market Information, in cooperation with U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, statewide estimates released July 2016.
     


    Industries of Employment
    for Computer Operators
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    Industry Percent of Total
    2014
    Administrative and support services 11.0%
    Data processing, hosting and related services 7.8%
    Computer systems design and related services 7.2%
    Educational services; state, local, and private 7.0%
    Management of companies and enterprises 7.0%
    source: Employment Projections, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, National Employment Matrix, released July 2016.
     


    Tasks
    for Computer Operators
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  • Enter commands, using computer terminal, and activate controls on computer and peripheral equipment to integrate and operate equipment.
     
  • Monitor the system for equipment failure or errors in performance.
     
  • Respond to program error messages by finding and correcting problems or terminating the program.
     
  • Notify supervisor or computer maintenance technicians of equipment malfunctions.
     
  • Answer telephone calls to assist computer users encountering problems.
     
  • Record information such as computer operating time, problems that occurred, and actions taken.
     
  • Operate spreadsheet programs and other types of software to load and manipulate data and to produce reports.
     
  • Help programmers and systems analysts test and debug new programs.
     
  • Retrieve, separate and sort program output as needed, and send data to specified users.
     
  • Oversee the operation of computer hardware systems, including coordinating and scheduling the use of computer terminals and networks to ensure efficient use.
     
    source: Occupational Information Network: Computer Operators  updated June 2009
     


    Knowledge
    for Computer Operators
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  • 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.
     
  • Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
     
  • 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.
     
  • 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.
     
  • 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.
     
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
     
  • Production and Processing - Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
     
  • 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.
     
  • Telecommunications - Knowledge of transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.
     
    source: Occupational Information Network: Computer Operators  updated June 2009
     


    Skills
    for Computer Operators
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  • Operation Monitoring - Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
     
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
     
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
     
  • 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.
     
  • Complex Problem Solving - Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
     
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
     
  • Operation and Control - Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
     
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
     
  • Time Management - Managing one's own time and the time of others.
     
  • Active Learning - Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
     
    source: Occupational Information Network: Computer Operators  updated June 2010
     


    Abilities
    for Computer Operators
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  • 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.
     
  • Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
     
  • 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).
     
  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
     
  • 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.
     
  • Selective Attention - The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.
     
  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
     
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
     
  • 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.
     
    source: Occupational Information Network: Computer Operators  updated June 2009
     


    Work Activities
    for Computer Operators
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  • Interacting With Computers - Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
     
  • Getting Information - Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
     
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates - Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
     
  • Processing Information - Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
     
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems - Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
     
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events - Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
     
  • Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings - Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
     
  • Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work - Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
     
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge - Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
     
  • Analyzing Data or Information - Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
     
    source: Occupational Information Network: Computer Operators  updated June 2009
     


    Interests
    for Computer Operators
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  • 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.
     
    source: Occupational Information Network: Computer Operators  updated June 2008
     


    Work Styles
    for Computer Operators
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  • 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.
     
  • Adaptability/Flexibility - Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
     
  • Integrity - Job requires being honest and ethical.
     
  • Stress Tolerance - Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
     
  • 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.
     
  • Initiative - Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
     
  • Persistence - Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
     
  • Concern for Others - Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
     
    source: Occupational Information Network: Computer Operators  updated June 2009
     


    State of Vermont License Information
    that may be required for Computer Operators
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    No state licenses listed for this occupation.
     


    Education and Training Requirements
    for Computer Operators
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  • 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.
  •  
  • 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.
  •  
  • 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.
  •  
    source: Occupational Information Network: Computer Operators  updated June 2009
     


    Schools
    offering instructional programs related to Computer Operators
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      Related Instructional Programs
     
    • Data Processing and Data Processing Technology/Technician.
     
     Search for schools offering these programs at
     
     
     
    source: National Center for Education Statistics 2000 Classification of Instructional Programs .
     


    Other Resources
    for Computer Operators
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  • Labor Exchange Information
  • A source for occupational characteristics, such as age, gender, race, and years of education and an alternative source for occupational wage rates. Limited to people looking for jobs and the jobs advertised through VDOL Vermont Job Link.
  • Look for statewide information over the latest 12 months for Computer Operators.
  •  
  • Occupational Outlook Handbook
  • No handbook information for this occupation.
     
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    Related Occupations
    Occupations with skill requirements similar to Computer Operators
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    source: Occupational Information Network: Computer Operators 
     

     
     
     
    Vermont.gov State of Vermont Department of Labor