Careers rarely develop the way we plan them. Our career path often takes many twists and turns, with particular events, choices and people influencing our direction.

We asked Oisin McGrath from Defence Forces to give some advice for people considering this job:

 

Oisin McGrath

Lieutenant - Pilot - Air Corp

Defence Forces

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  Oisin McGrath

If you are seriously considering applying for the Air Corps you should check the pre-required Leaving Certificate subjects as outlined in the cadetship booklet. This is very important!!

Also, if applying you should get the details of the fitness test from the cadetship booklet and make sure you can do each of the disciplines well before the fitness test...a lot of people fail this part of the application process, and it can be passed easily!

If possible, you should organise a visit to Baldonnel through somebody that you know or maybe even your school...just to get familiar with the aircraft and to see the daily operation of the Air Corps.

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The Investigative person will usually find a particular area of science to be of interest. They are inclined toward intellectual and analytical activities and enjoy observation and theory. They may prefer thought to action, and enjoy the challenge of solving problems with clever technology. They will often follow the latest developments in their chosen field, and prefer mentally stimulating environments.
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Occupation Details

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General Assistant - Factory

Job Zone

Education
Some of these occupations may require a Leaving Certificate or similar.

Related Experience
Little or no previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is needed for these occupations. For example, a person can become a waiter or waitress even if he/she has never worked before.

Job Training
Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few days to a few months of training. Usually, an experienced worker could show you how to do the job.

Job Zone Examples
These occupations involve following instructions and helping others. Examples include taxi drivers, amusement and recreation attendants, counter clerks, construction laborers, and waiters or waitresses.

€18k >  
General Assistant, Factory
Salary Range
(thousands per year)*
€18 -  
Related Information:
Data Source(s):
FAS

Last Updated: March, 2013

* The lower figures typically reflect starting salaries. Higher salaries are awarded to those with greater experience and responsibility. Positions in Dublin sometimes command higher salaries.
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At a Glance... header image

General assistants carry out a range of duties in factories. Tasks may include moving goods, cleaning up and loading and unloading vehicles.


The Work header image

Assistants often have different job titles, such as department labourer, factory hand or general operative, depending on the factory.  
 
General assistants carry out a range of tasks in factories, to allow other workers to get on with their jobs without breaking off.  
 
General assistants may collect and distribute raw materials to factory floor workers, machine operators or craftsmen/women. They may also move units and parts to different production areas within the factory at various stages, for example from the main manufacturing area to the finishing section.  
 
Transporting goods can involve operating lift trucks, hand-operated trolleys and, in some industries, overhead cranes, for example to move heavy engineering products.  
 
General cleaning duties are also often involved in this type of work. Assistants sweep floors and keep production areas tidy and clear of obstacles. They may also be required to clean machines and equipment. Some assistants will be asked to help craftsmen/women to set up machines for new product lines, which involves cleaning container tanks, attaching feeder pipes, fetching supplies and so on.  
 
Other duties can include helping to load and unload raw materials and finished products. This may mean working outside, in all weather conditions. In heavy industry, assistants are involved in slinging.  
 
General assistants are usually expected to do any jobs that need doing. This means working in any part of the factory, and filling in when people are off or when the factory is particularly busy with delivery dates to meet. Some packing work and machine operating might be a regular part of the job. They are responsible for the general maintenance and upkeep of the factory.

 


Tasks & Activitiesheader image

The following is a list of the most commonly reported tasks and activities for this occupation

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Operate machinery used in the production process, or assist machine operators.

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Examine products to verify conformance to quality standards.

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Observe equipment operations so that malfunctions can be detected, and notify operators of any malfunctions.

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Lift raw materials, finished products, and packed items, manually or using hoists.

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Count finished products to determine if product orders are complete.

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Mark or tag identification on parts.

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Load and unload items from machines, conveyors, and conveyances.

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Help production workers by performing duties of lesser skill, such as supplying or holding materials or tools, or cleaning work areas and equipment.

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Clean and lubricate equipment.

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Record information, such as the number of products tested, meter readings, or dates and times of product production.

Work Activities header image

The following is a list of the most commonly reported work activities in this occupation.

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Handling and Moving Objects:  Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.

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Performing General Physical Activities:  Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.

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Controlling Machines and Processes:  Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).

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Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships:  Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.

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Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings:  Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.

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Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work:  Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.

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Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material:  Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.

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Making Decisions and Solving Problems:  Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.

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Repairing and Maintaining Mechanical Equipment:  Servicing, repairing, adjusting, and testing machines, devices, moving parts, and equipment that operate primarily on the basis of mechanical (not electronic) principles.

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Processing Information:  Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.


Knowledge header image

The following is a list of the five most commonly reported knowledge areas for this occupation.

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English Language:  Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

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Mathematics:  Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.

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Public Safety and Security:  Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.

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Production and Processing:  Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.

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Mechanical:  Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.


Skillsheader image

The following is a list of the most commonly reported skills used in this occupation.

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Operation Monitoring:   Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.

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Monitoring:   Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

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Critical Thinking:   Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

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Active Listening:   Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

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Social Perceptiveness:   Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

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Reading Comprehension:   Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

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Speaking:   Talking to others to convey information effectively.

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Coordination:   Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.

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Operation and Control:   Controlling operations of equipment or systems.

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Quality Control Analysis:   Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.

Personal Qualitiesheader image

You will need to be flexible and willing to undertake a variety of different tasks. A helpful, friendly personality is an advantage. Factory workers may depend on you to help them to meet their deadlines, so you will need to carry out your work efficiently and on time.  
 
You should enjoy practical work. You also need to be willing to do repetitive tasks. Some jobs demand hand skills and co-ordination, such as operating lift trucks and controlling lifting equipment. You must be willing to take orders and work under direction from others.  
 
Good health and fitness is usually needed. Some jobs are physically demanding and involve heavy lifting and carrying. Work at heights is possible in some factories, for example climbing ladders to check inside tanks. Cleaning jobs can involve getting dirty.


Related Occupationsheader image

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Career Guidance

This occupation is popular with people who have the following Career Interests...


...and for people who like working in the following Career Sectors:

Mechanical Engineering & Manufacturing
MedTech

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