Chemical process operator positions are classified as processing and production jobs. The chemical process operator is responsible for all chemical mixing, processing, and packaging operations within the production area. The operator must know and observe all safety procedures, organizational rules, and environmental policies. They are responsible for transferring the products through the various process and storage areas using conveyors, tanks, and other transfer systems. Additionally, the chemical process operator researches and troubleshoots any problems that occur during product transfer and reports these issues to the maintenance department. The chemical process operator may also be responsible for loading and unloading chemical delivery vehicles, conducting chemical product inventory, and ensuring general cleanliness of the area in which they work.
This position typically reports to a production or floor manager or supervisor. They deal with production, maintenance, and assembly workers of various levels, and this position is typically full time with a majority of the work completed in an office on the production floor. Some overnight shifts may be required, and most chemical process operators work rotating shifts.
A high school diploma or equivalent is typically required for this position in addition to a minimum of one year of experience working in a chemical processing or manufacturing environment. Prior experience with chemical mixing and compounding is strongly preferred. Forklift certification or the ability to learn to drive a forklift is required. These professionals must possess the ability to read and understand standard procedural and safety documents, maintenance manuals, posted instructions, and placards. The ideal chemical process operator has excellent time management and organizational skills and the ability to multitask.
Chemical Process Operator Tasks
Monitor and maintain equipment, including adjusting controls, oiling or cleaning, and switching to backups.
Conduct laboratory tests and record results like pH, temperature, raw materials, water level, etc.
Process chemicals by following guidelines and instructions on equipment such as reactors, distillation systems, etc.
Package and transfer chemicals safely.