A print press operator sets up the print press machines and color swatches, as well as operates the press. Some positions may even require the operator to install new machines, so proficiency and knowledge with all relevant equipment may be needed before the operator starts work. Individuals in this position may work at publications such as magazines and newspapers or for organizations providing printing services for businesses. A print press operator might also develop designs and color coordination for prints to be used to reach prospective clients.
An eye for quality is necessary in this position to ensure that organizational standards are met. There may be quotas and deadlines to be met if items produced need to be printed quickly per client request. A print press operator must ensure that all machines are in working order, so quality checks should be carried out on a routine basis. They need to clean up the print press area on a regular basis. Some of these positions may require marketing directly to the client, while others have duties that are more aimed towards the actual printing process.
Usually, a high school diploma or equivalent is the minimum educational requirement for this position. Entry-level positions may be available, while some positions require previous experience in the printing press field. It is essential that print press operators have the ability to see the whole spectrum of colors. Attention to detail is also important in this role.
Print Press Operator Tasks
Make plates and mix ink.
Set up and operate printing press.
Shut down printing presses by removing ink and paper, cleaning parts and components.
Establish printing quality by adjusting ink distribution, speed and drying temperatures.
Maintain press supplies inventory by checking stock to determine inventory level.