Field-service-technician-copyright-yurchyks_bannerField Service Technician © Yurchyks

Field Service Technician

Industries:
Photo Imaging
Personality type:
Engineer
Departments:
Manufacturers

The lowdown

  • Carrying out on-site installation, maintenance and repairs to high-value business equipment such as minilabs, large format printers and scanners

Is this role right for me?

To do this role, you will need to:

  • possess strong problem-solving skills 
  • have good customer service skills to deal sensitively with customers who have malfunctioning equipment
  • have good organisational skills
  • be able to work quickly under pressure without supervision. 
  • be able to understand technical diagrams and manuals
  • have a good knowledge of maths, science and technology
  • be aware of electrical, mechanical and chemical health and safety issues
  • have good IT skills
  • be physically fit and understand appropriate lifting techniques
  • have normal colour vision
  • possess a clean driving licence

What does a Field Service Technician do?

Field Service Technicians use their product training and technical skills to ensure that high-value business equipment such as film processing machines, minilabs and large format printers are properly maintained and repaired with the minimum of downtime.

They visit the premises of companies and organisations that have a warranty or on-going service agreement with the equipment manufacturer or support company.

Field Service Technicians will typically have a basic electronics qualification or will have gained on-the-job experience and training from working in an electronics role.

Photographic manufacturers employ thousands of Field Service Technicians across the UK. It is their job to install, maintain and repair a wide range of commercial and business imaging equipment, including: film processing equipment, photographic and inkjet printers, commercial and scientific scanners, large format printers, minilabs, digital kiosks and photo booths, as well as related computerised control systems and software.

There are several core responsibilities of the role. Field Service Technicians install, configure and calibrate equipment and train staff in the safe use of the equipment. They service the equipment regularly, carrying out scheduled maintenance and replacing worn or faulty parts. They repair equipment, diagnosing and fixing faults on site, and logging repairs on a database.

They may also receive bonuses for encouraging customers to replace old equipment with new machines, and in some cases this role can be combined with the role of a Technical Sales Representative.

What might I earn?

Field Service Technicians enjoy a fairly good starting wage which increases with experience. They normally work 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday, although some may be on-call to deal with out-of-hours problems. The salary package often includes the use of a company car or van.

Will I need a qualification?

You will generally need four or five good passes in your GCSEs or Standard grades, ideally in science-based subjects such as maths, science, engineering, design and technology. You could also get your first foothold in the industry through an electronic/electrical engineering or information technology apprenticeship.

Alternatively, you could take a basic electronics course at a local college, such as a BTEC or City & Guilds qualification, which would give you some of the skills needed in this job.

What’s the best route in?

Your normal route in to this kind of role would be to take an electronic/electrical engineering or information technology apprenticeship.

You could find work directly with equipment manufacturers in their repair centres or as a field technician; or with smaller companies who carry out sub-contract work on behalf of those manufacturers; or with large organisations that have their own in-house support team.

Jobs are advertised throughout the UK in the local press, job centres and in recruitment agencies.

Once in post, you will normally receive in-house training on the specific manufacturers' equipment and can usually take work-based NVQ/SVQ qualifications to develop your skills further. You can also advance your career by studying part-time for higher-level qualifications like a BTEC HNC/HND or a City & Guilds Progression Award.

Where might the role take me?

Having gained some experience, you could progress to Senior Technician, Service Team Leader, Field Service Manager or Regional Manager. With further training you could choose to specialise in particular areas of work, such as IT services, contract management, electronics engineering or as a certified specialist in a particular area.

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