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Ophthalmic Laboratory Technicians picture    Ophthalmic Laboratory Technicians image

Ophthalmic Laboratory Technicians

Ophthalmic laboratory technicians also known as optical mechanics, manufacturing opticians and optical goods workers make prescription eyeglass lenses and contact lenses based on an ophthalmologist's or an optometrist's prescription. Some ophthalmic laboratory techs make precision lenses for microscopes, telescopes, cameras and military equipment.

Manufacturing opticians cut, grind, edge and finish lenses. Most Ophthalmic laboratory technicians utilize automated equipment to produce lenses, however some are still made by hand. In large laboratories, practically every stage of the operation is automated and technicians operate computerized equipment. They also inspect the lenses for accuracy and quality. In small laboratories, technicians typically handle all the stages of the operation.

Responsibilities

  • Select the proper blank lens
  • Cut, grind, edge and finish lenses
  • Check the curvature of the lens with a lensometer
  • Fit the lenses to the glasses' frame
  • Fit lenses into optical equipment
  • Adjust lenses and frames in order to correct alignment
  • Assemble eyeglass frames and attach nose pads, shields and temple pieces
  • Inspect lens blanks in order to detect flaws

Job Characteristics

They work in clean, well-ventilated and well-lighted laboratories. Manufacturing opticians have limited public contact. Most of these technicians work 40 hours a week. Laboratory techs should have good manual dexterity and good vision. They should also be detailed oriented.

Employment Outlook

The employment of ophthalmic laboratory technicians has been forecasted by the Bureau of Labor Statistics to grow by 15 percent during the 2008 to 2018 timeframe which is faster than average for all occupations. Demand for these workers will expand due to the growth of the middle aged and older population. Middle aged is often the time when people need corrective lenses for the first time. However, automated machinery is increasingly being used in the industry which may tone down the demand for employment for ophthalmic laboratory technicians.

The median annual earnings for ophthalmic laboratory technicians in 2008 was $27,210. Experienced optical mechanics can move up to supervisor or management positions.

Education, Certification, and Licensing

Employers seek candidates that have a high school diploma and some employers prefer to hire those with formal training. Most ophthalmic laboratory technicians learn their trade on the job. Classes in science, computers, mathematics, drafting, metal shop and wood shop are beneficial.

A small number of ophthalmic laboratory technicians learn their trade from a vocational school. In 2008 there were two programs in ophthalmic technology that had received accreditation from the Commission on Opticianry Accreditation. These programs typically take six months to one year to complete and provide certificates or diplomas.

Resources

Major Employers

The top job providers are medical equipment and supplies manufacturing companies, health and personal care stores, optometrists offices, and professional and commercial equipment and supplies merchant wholesalers.

Metro Areas Sorted by Total Employment for:
Ophthalmic Laboratory Technicians

Listed below are metro areas sorted by the total number of people employed in Ophthalmic Laboratory Technicians jobs , as of 2016

2016 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2014-24 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov; 2014-24 State Occupational Projections, Projections Central, projectionscentral.com

     
Metro Area (Arizona) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Scottsdale 110 $30,340
Mesa 110 $30,340
Phoenix 110 $30,340
     
Metro Area (Arkansas) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Conway 120 $31,180
North Little Rock 120 $31,180
Little Rock 120 $31,180
     
Metro Area (California) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Anaheim 1000 $30,620
Los Angeles 1000 $30,620
Long Beach 1000 $30,620
Sacramento 70 $32,880
Arcade 70 $32,880
Roseville 70 $32,880
Arden 70 $32,880
Ventura 70 $45,040
Thousand Oaks 70 $45,040
Oxnard 70 $45,040
Salinas N/A $29,550
Oakland N/A $36,050
Hayward N/A $36,050
San Francisco N/A $36,050
Santa Barbara N/A $37,960
Santa Maria N/A $37,960
San Diego N/A $38,360
Carlsbad N/A $38,360
     
Metro Area (Colorado) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Lakewood 300 $32,170
Aurora 300 $32,170
Denver 300 $32,170
Boulder 160 $36,690
     
Metro Area (Connecticut) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Norwalk 220 $47,830
Stamford 220 $47,830
Bridgeport 220 $47,830
New Haven N/A $39,790
     
Metro Area (Florida) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Miami 990 $26,580
Fort Lauderdale 990 $26,580
West Palm Beach 990 $26,580
Tampa 910 $27,610
Clearwater 910 $27,610
St. Petersburg 910 $27,610
Jacksonville 340 $35,080
Orlando 190 $26,960
Kissimmee 190 $26,960
Sanford 190 $26,960
Bradenton 90 $30,310
North Port 90 $30,310
Sarasota 90 $30,310
Tallahassee 60 $22,770
Daytona Beach 60 $25,000
Deltona 60 $25,000
Ormond Beach 60 $25,000
Panama City 40 $27,970
Winter Haven N/A $26,160
Lakeland N/A $26,160
     
Metro Area (Georgia) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Roswell 360 $26,660
Sandy Springs 360 $26,660
Atlanta 360 $26,660
     
Metro Area (Idaho) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Boise City N/A $33,400
     
Metro Area (Illinois) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Peoria 170 $33,420
Springfield N/A $28,430
     
Metro Area (Indiana) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Fort Wayne N/A $22,600
Anderson N/A $41,320
Carmel N/A $41,320
Indianapolis N/A $41,320
     
Metro Area (Iowa) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Iowa City 40 N/A
     
Metro Area (Kansas) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Topeka 40 $29,610
     
Metro Area (Louisiana) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Metairie 210 $32,140
New Orleans 210 $32,140
Baton Rouge 70 $31,660
Lake Charles 30 $24,780
Shreveport N/A $22,990
Bossier City N/A $22,990
Alexandria N/A $23,640
     
Metro Area (Maryland) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Towson 220 $31,320
Columbia 220 $31,320
Baltimore 220 $31,320
     
Metro Area (Michigan) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Warren 550 $34,280
Dearborn 550 $34,280
Detroit 550 $34,280
Jackson 30 $29,850
Saginaw N/A $29,550
Grand Rapids N/A $29,720
Wyoming N/A $29,720
     
Metro Area (Minnesota) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
St. Cloud 780 $29,620
     
Metro Area (Mississippi) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Pascagoula 70 $29,140
Biloxi 70 $29,140
Gulfport 70 $29,140
Hattiesburg N/A $33,230
     
Metro Area (Montana) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Billings 30 $30,500
     
Metro Area (Nevada) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Paradise N/A $29,020
Henderson N/A $29,020
Las Vegas N/A $29,020
     
Metro Area (New Hampshire) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Manchester N/A $24,520
     
Metro Area (New Mexico) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Albuquerque N/A $29,500
     
Metro Area (New York) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Rochester 730 $31,440
Syracuse 190 $27,010
Albany 110 $38,670
Troy 110 $38,670
Schenectady 110 $38,670
Rome N/A $35,250
Utica N/A $35,250
Cheektowaga N/A $39,750
Buffalo N/A $39,750
Niagara Falls N/A $39,750
     
Metro Area (Ohio) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Columbus 240 $27,620
Elyria 220 $27,870
Cleveland 220 $27,870
Dayton 110 $27,160
Springfield N/A $27,530
     
Metro Area (Oklahoma) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Oklahoma City 210 $27,470
     
Metro Area (Pennsylvania) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Pittsburgh 310 $33,600
Wilkes 110 $27,780
Hazleton 110 $27,780
Barre 110 $27,780
Scranton 110 $27,780
Lancaster 110 $36,650
York 70 $27,620
Hanover 70 $27,620
Erie N/A $30,850
Carlisle N/A $37,820
Harrisburg N/A $37,820
     
Metro Area (Puerto Rico) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Caguas 100 $18,610
Carolina 100 $18,610
San Juan 100 $18,610
     
Metro Area (South Carolina) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
North Charleston N/A $28,170
Charleston N/A $28,170
     
Metro Area (South Dakota) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Sioux Falls 30 $34,470
     
Metro Area (Tennessee) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Johnson City 30 $23,120
Knoxville N/A $24,830
Franklin N/A $30,340
Davidson N/A $30,340
Nashville N/A $30,340
Murfreesboro N/A $30,340
     
Metro Area (Texas) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Arlington 1410 $30,430
Fort Worth 1410 $30,430
Dallas 1410 $30,430
San Antonio 330 $28,820
New Braunfels 330 $28,820
The Woodlands 290 $28,110
Houston 290 $28,110
Sugar Land 290 $28,110
Round Rock 90 $28,350
Austin 90 $28,350
Temple 60 $22,510
Killeen 60 $22,510
     
Metro Area (Virginia) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Roanoke N/A $23,790
     
Metro Area (Washington) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Seattle 220 $33,020
Bellevue 220 $33,020
Tacoma 220 $33,020
Spokane Valley 60 $32,540
Spokane 60 $32,540
     
Metro Area (Wisconsin) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
West Allis 160 $30,040
Waukesha 160 $30,040
Milwaukee 160 $30,040
Green Bay 100 $30,790
Madison 60 $35,780

Most Popular Industries for :
Ophthalmic Laboratory Technicians

Industries representing at least 1% of total jobs for the occupation.

2016 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2014-24 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov; 2014-24 State Occupational Projections, Projections Central, projectionscentral.com

Industry Jobs Percent Annual Median Salary
Miscellaneous Manufacturing 11,380 34% $25,230
Drug Stores 8,070 24% $25,580
Medical Office 7,860 24% $30,650
Durable Goods Wholesale 2,560 7% $24,870
Machinery 2,100 6% $33,610
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