Web-press operators are responsible for ensuring quality of client-specified printing while working with safety standards and adhering to waste limits. Attention to detail is important in this position, as colors must be accurate and products must be packaged and shipped according to exact specifications. Math skills, organization and prioritizing, efficient communication, and manual dexterity are all essential requirements in order to keep accurate logs, and these operators must be educated in printing industry techniques and materials, as well as web-press operations and controls to troubleshoot problems as they arise. Their main duties involve setting up machinery, ensuring quality printing during production (including packing and matching multiple color specifications), forwarding details to packers if necessary, and assuring high-quality finished products.
Web-press operators often work for newspapers, magazines, book-printers, and other large-scale printing operations, usually in a team setting. The job is physically taxing, as heavy lifting (up to 100 pounds), standing for long periods of time, and frequent night-shifts may be required. Machine setup and maintenance may also be necessary, and maintaining safety standards is very important at all times due to potentially dangerous chemicals and equipment.
While formal educational requirements are not strict for this position, a high-school diploma and industry experience, perhaps of several years, are generally required, and apprenticeship is required to obtain journey-level. A background in graphic design can be beneficial, and candidates should be physically strong, mechanically inclined, detail-oriented with a good eye for color, good communicators, and able to work well within tight deadlines.