Electronic Prepress Operator Salary
Pay for Electronic Prepress Operators in the United States sits in the ballpark of $19.42 per hour. Residence is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by experience level. Most Electronic Prepress Operators report high levels of job satisfaction. Medical benefits are awarded to a strong majority, and the greater part earn dental coverage. Electronic Prepress Operators who participated in the survey are largely men, dominating at 61 percent.
Job Description for Electronic Prepress Operator
An electronic prepress operator is a digital design specialist who ensures their organization's digital images and files are of the highest quality. At the beginning of the electronic prepress process, the operator frequently travels with a sales representative to the client's office for training and information gathering; they also try to learn about how the client wishes to express itself, the images it is trying to evoke, the client's branding, and their expectations for the final digital product. For example, the client may be looking to create an image-focused advertisement that evokes certain messages and images associated with the client's brand image.Read More...
After returning from the client's offices, the electronic prepress operator uses digital imaging software to start creating the final digital image. To effectively generate the final product, the prepress operator must have knowledge of industry best practices such as layering. They also must ensure that the final product is of highest quality by monitoring proportions and perspectives. The electronic prepress operator must also alter their draft of the image in response to any feedback from their supervisor and/or the client.
Often, electronic prepress operators hold a high school diploma or equivalent; postesecondary training may be preferred. Electronic prepress operators must be experience with relevant editing software and be effective communicators to work well with colleagues, supervisors, and clients.
Electronic Prepress Operator Tasks
- Receive, validate and check accuracy of digital files.
- Retouch and correct files, illustrations and plates to finalize for publication.
- Identify missing content, illustrations or other problems and communicate with client.
- Determine, document and communicate layout considerations, including page count and bleed.
Common Career Paths for Electronic Prepress Operator
Electronic Prepress Operators do not often transition into Prepress Manager roles. The role averages $53K per year. The most common career progression for Electronic Prepress Operators leads to becoming a Prepress Supervisor, where average pay is $49K annually. However, many Electronic Prepress Operators also opt to become Graphic Arts Production Artists. Typically, a Graphic Arts Production Artist brings home $38K.
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Popular Skills for Electronic Prepress Operator
Survey results suggest that Electronic Prepress Operators put a wide range of professional skills to use. Most notably, skills in Adobe InDesign, Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator, and Prepress are correlated to pay that is above average. Skills that seem to negatively impact pay include Graphic Design. Those educated in Adobe Illustrator tend to be well versed in Adobe InDesign.
Pay by Experience Level for Electronic Prepress Operator
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Experience and pay tend to be weakly linked for Electronic Prepress Operators — those with more experience do not necessarily bring in higher earnings. Although individuals who have less than five years' experience earn $34K on average, people with five to 10 years benefit from a notably larger average of $38K. Electronic Prepress Operators see a median salary of $42K after reaching one to two decades on the job. Individuals who report more than two decades of experience seem to make only slightly more than folks in the 10-to-20 year range; the more senior group sees median earnings in the comparatively modest ballpark of $45K.
Pay Difference by Location
For Electronic Prepress Operators, Chicago, Minneapolis, and St. Louis, three midwestern cities, are home to the highest salaries in the United States, all offering a rate above the national average. The lowest-paying market is Green Bay, which sits 29 percent below the national average, proving that location is a significant contributor to overall pay. A couple other locations with smaller-than-average paychecks include New York (17 percent lower) and Buffalo (10 percent lower).
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Key Stats for Electronic Prepress Operator
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