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Essential skills profile

This profile contains a list of example tasks that illustrate how each of the 9 essential skills is generally performed by most workers in this occupation. The levels of complexity estimated for each task are ranked between 1 (basic) and 5 (advanced).

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Hide and Pelt Processing Workers (9441)

Hide and pelt processing workers trim, scrape, clean, tan, buff and dye animal hides, pelts or skins to produce leather stock and finished furs. They are employed by leather tanning, fur dressing and leather and fur dyeing establishments.

Reading Help - Reading
  • May read notes from their supervisor detailing quantities per colour and any other special requests from customers. (1)
  • May read trade magazines for information on how to dye and finish leather. (2)
  • May read information from suppliers on new dyes for leather finishing. (2)
  • May read Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) Safety Data Sheets and information sheets about chemicals used in hide and pelt processing. (3)
Document use Help - Document use
  • Read tags which identify each hide or pelt by type, treatment, colour or number. (1)
  • Read warning labels on chemical barrels. (1)
  • Read cards indicating the amounts of chemicals to be added to baths. (1)
  • Read lists to find bundle sizes and to find out what steps in processing the hide have already been completed. (1)
  • Read customer order forms indicating how many hides are to be dyed each colour. (1)
  • Fill out tags on bundles or pallets for shipping purposes. (1)
  • Read recipe sheets which provide information about the concentration of chemicals, temperature, weight and time allotments for the various steps in the tanning process. (2)
  • Record the number of hides processed and the length and type of treatment each fur has undergone. (2)
  • Fill out sampling tables to send to the lab. (2)
  • Fill out inventory forms. (2)
  • Read WHIMIS safety data sheets when using new or unfamiliar chemicals or products. (3)
Writing Help - Writing
  • Write themselves reminder notes about work to be completed. (1)
  • Write notes to workers on the next shift, indicating which steps of the process have been completed. (1)
  • Record pelt type, quantity, weight and relevant customer information. (1)
  • Write notes on the condition of particular animal hides. (1)
  • Write comments about each hide or pelt after treatment. (1)
  • Fill out billing forms indicating the client's name, what was done to the hides and the amount to be paid by the customer. (1)
  • Write out detailed instructions about how to get the correct colour for each dye job. There may be 15 different dyes being used in a day, all for different customers. (2)
  • Write a production report, noting the time taken to complete various steps, the present stage of production and any delays in the process. (2)
  • Write themselves reminder notes about work to be completed. (1)
  • Write notes to workers on the next shift, indicating which steps of the process have been completed. (1)
  • Record pelt type, quantity, weight and relevant customer information. (1)
  • Write notes on the condition of particular animal hides. (1)
  • Write comments about each hide or pelt after treatment. (1)
  • Fill out billing forms indicating the client's name, what was done to the hides and the amount to be paid by the customer. (1)
  • Write out detailed instructions about how to get the correct colour for each dye job. There may be 15 different dyes being used in a day, all for different customers. (2)
  • Write a production report, noting the time taken to complete various steps, the present stage of production and any delays in the process. (2)
Numeracy Help - Numeracy Money Math
  • May calculate the amount of a bill, including taxes. (2)
Scheduling, Budgeting & Accounting Math
  • Compute unit production costs. They factor in the time and hourly rates of employees, quantities and prices of materials, and overhead to obtain the cost of each unit produced. (3)
  • Establish and monitor project budgets for large development and testing projects. They ensure that work paid for has been accomplished and that expenses incurred for labour, materials and equipment are fully covered by budgets. (3)
Measurement and Calculation Math
  • May determine how many hides or pelts will be needed to fulfill an upcoming contract. (2)
  • May measure pickling solution ingredients. (1)
  • May measure the temperature of the immersion baths into which hides are placed. (1)
  • May measure the pH and chemical levels in rinses and adjust as necessary. (1)
  • May weigh hides and pelts and calculate the amount of chemicals to be added to immersion baths for that quantity. (2)
Numerical Estimation
  • May estimate the quantity of a chemical product to add to rebalance the pH in a rinse. (1)
  • May estimate the weight of the load to dry or the appropriate water level in the flushing drum. (1)
  • May estimate the amount of time it will take to complete an order. (2)
Oral communication Help - Oral communication
  • May receive instructions from their supervisor for specific jobs. (1)
  • May consult technicians to obtain authorisation for modifying rinse compositions. (1)
  • May speak to customers to provide suggestions or advice on remodelling their furs. (2)
  • May ask co-workers for assistance, provide them with information and discuss new processes or chemicals. (2)
Thinking Help - Thinking Problem Solving
  • May deal with unexpected deliveries, such as unprepared hides. These hides cannot be stored untreated and must be salted and cured. They interrupt their current job and relay details of the problem to the supervisor. (1)
  • May encounter difficulties in getting a dye colour exact. They must make careful adjustments to the mixture to get the proper colour. (2)
  • Cope with machinery breakdowns, such as the drum seizing. They ask their supervisor or co-workers for assistance in fixing the machine and work quickly to save the hides affected by rinsing them in special chemicals. (3)
  • May find that the temperature of a rinse is too hot because of a false reading on the thermometer. They must measure the temperature manually and correct the situation as quickly as possible to avoid ruining the pelts. (3)
Decision Making
  • Decide what knife or tool to use to cut away fat so that the job may be completed as quickly and neatly as possible. (1)
  • Decide whether the colour or tint is exact or whether it needs to be adjusted. (1)
  • Decide whether a hide is usable or must be discarded. (2)
  • Decide which pelts to choose when considering the needs of a particular job. (2)
  • Decide whether to add more chemicals or change the pH level of a rinse. (2)
  • Decide on the exact time to remove the hides from the baths. (3)
Critical Thinking

Critical Thinking information was not collected for this profile.

Job Task Planning and Organizing

There is little variety in the tasks of hide and pelt processing workers. Workers are usually informed of the day's schedule, but must prioritize their tasks and allow time for reprocessing. There are frequent interruptions and workers must keep critical steps of processes in mind as they reorganize activities. Workers may have to co-ordinate their tasks with those of other workers. (2)

Significant Use of Memory
  • Remember the process sequence and timing.
  • Remember how to mix various solutions for tanning.
  • Remember specific dye specifications for commonly used shades.
Finding Information
  • Obtain information from labels or data sheets. (1)
  • Refer to records from previous orders outlining the mixture for different tints and dyes. (1)
  • Consult supervisors and co-workers to clarify schedules and tasks. (2)
Digital technology Help - Digital technology
  • Use computer-controlled equipment. For example, they may use an electronic scale to weigh pelts. (1)
Additional information Help - Additional information Other Essential Skills:

Working with Others

Hide and pelt processing workers mainly work independently. They may work with a partner for heavy jobs such as when lifting heavy hides or drums.

Continuous Learning

Hide and pelt processing workers learn about the properties of new chemicals and their concentrations. They also learn about new processes and procedures.

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