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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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Plastic Products Assemblers, Finishers and Inspectors (9495)

This unit group includes workers who assemble, finish and inspect plastic parts and finished products. They are employed by plastic products manufacturing companies and plastic parts divisions of aircraft or other manufacturing companies.

Reading Help - Reading
  • Read information bulletins from product suppliers which outline product use and hazards. (1)
  • Read special instructions which accompany work orders. (1)
  • Read manufacturers' specification sheets on different materials, containing information on types and uses of material, heat resistance and heating instructions. (2)
  • Read trade journals and magazines which highlight changes in the industry. (2)
  • read machinery manuals for information on how to repair machines and how to cut various types of plastic. (3)
  • Refer to Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) sheets to learn about the composition and handling of specific chemicals. (3)
Document use Help - Document use
  • Read product and chemical labels and Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) labels. (2)
  • Refer to purchase orders to obtain information on material required and dimensions. (2)
  • interpret pictures from magazines or books to understand production requirements. (2)
  • Read drill charts outlining the tapping of holes and sizes of drills to use. (2)
  • Read and complete work orders and specification sheets. (2)
  • Complete time charts, which include the time spent on jobs, time spent on cleaning work areas and time spent repairing equipment. (2)
  • Complete production forms, recording the number of boxes, parts, rejects and machine down time. (2)
  • Complete shipping forms giving details such as the product, its colour and destination. (2)
  • enter test results on a computer using data entry screens. (2)
  • Read purchase orders describing the dimensions and types of plastic to use when making products. (2)
  • Interpret and take measurements from scale drawings to determine job specifications. (3)
  • Read assembly and schematic drawings before starting projects. (3)
Writing Help - Writing
  • Write notes on scale drawings as a reference for repeat jobs. (1)
  • Write reasons why corrective action is required. (1)
  • Write notes to co-workers to indicate where the last person left off and where they are to begin. This is done to avoid duplication and loss of time. (1)
  • Write estimates for customers. (2)
  • Write notes outlining production short cuts or changes suggested to facilitate production. (2)
Numeracy Help - Numeracy Measurement and Calculation Math
  • Measure lengths of material or depths of holes to drill. (1)
  • Measure the thickness of plexiglass and cut pieces to ensure they meet specifications. (1)
  • Take measurements from blueprints to determine the dimensions needed to make a mould. (2)
  • Calculate areas and perimeters when figuring out amounts of material and acrofix needed to make an item. (2)
  • Use vernier rulers and vernier callipers to measure precisely to 1/1000 of an inch. (3)
Data Analysis Math
  • Compare observed measures and test results to specifications to ensure they are within the desired range. (1)
Numerical Estimation
  • Estimate how long it will take to spray moulds and finish items. (1)
  • Estimate the amount of plastic to cut out of a sheet to make a specific part of a product. (2)
  • Estimate the cost of repairing an item. They estimate time and labour required to fix mis-manufactured or damaged parts. (2)
Oral communication Help - Oral communication
  • Interact with co-workers to discuss jobs, ask questions, give advice, get help and determine project specifications. (1)
  • CLarify jobs and dimensions with clients. (1)
  • Interact with suppliers to find out about the prices and availability of products. (1)
  • Communicate with supervisors to discuss problems with particular jobs, develop strategies for projects and determine work priorities. (2)
  • Discuss options with clients and provide them with advice on which welds work best with certain types of plastic. (2)
  • May communicate with the public when explaining products at trade fairs. (2)
Thinking Help - Thinking Problem Solving
  • May find that parts are stuck in the mould. They decide which tools to use to remove parts without damaging the mould. They must know their limitations and when to call lead hands for help. (1)
  • May encounter a production lot which is incomplete because of a high number of rejected pieces. Inspectors must ensure that production continues until there are enough items to complete the lot and that there are sufficient raw materials to do so. (1)
  • May discover that moulds do not take proper shape. Workers must use past experience or experiment with techniques to fix errors. (2)
  • May be asked to repair a plastic product without sufficient knowledge of its composition. They must determine which glues and welds will work best. (2)
  • May find work orders do not give the correct measurements. Workers must troubleshoot to find ways to make products as close to dimensions requested as possible. (3)
Decision Making
  • Decide on the fastest way to cut or glue a product. (1)
  • Decide how much curing time is needed and when to schedule spraying so that they do not interfere with co-workers who require use of the same spraying facilities. (2)
  • May decide if all aspects of a product conform to quality norms and client requests. (2)
  • Decide whether to substitute a product of a similar quality if a specific type and thickness of plastic requested for a product is not immediately available. (2)
  • Decide whether to interrupt production to obtain a change in parameters or recipes. (3)
  • Decide how to lay out materials most economically when designing a product (3)
Critical Thinking

Critical Thinking information was not collected for this profile.

Job Task Planning and Organizing

Supervisors determine the jobs to be completed each week. Plastic products assemblers, finishers and inspectors determine the order of tasks based on the deadlines they have been given and the need to co-ordinate the use of machines and spraying facilities with co-workers. Depending on the workplace, they may complete the same repetitive tasks or orders may vary and include one-of-a-kind jobs. Emergencies may occur, such as rush jobs, causing regular schedules to be interrupted. (2)

Significant Use of Memory
  • Remember test results and tolerances for different types of plastics.
  • Recall specific processes that worked well or poorly on other jobs so that this knowledge can be applied to the present job.
  • Remember the assembly plan for a particular project so that specifications do not have to be constantly reviewed.
Finding Information
  • Refer to drawings of items to check specifications. (1)
  • Ask supervisors or engineers for information which is not readily available. (1)
  • Refer to Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) for information regarding products. (2)
  • Refer to manuals when machines need repair. (2)
Digital technology Help - Digital technology
  • They may type an estimate for a product repair. (2)
  • They may create a pie chart showing time spent on different jobs. (2)
  • They may locate customer information or job orders in a database. (2)
Additional information Help - Additional information Other Essential Skills:

Working with Others

Plastic products assemblers, finishers and inspectors mainly work independently. They may work with a partner or a group of co-workers to complete rush or large jobs, to solve specific problems or to move items. When making items in large quantities, workers may each have specific tasks which must be co-ordinated with the work of others.

Continuous Learning

Plastic products assemblers, finishers and inspectors have an ongoing need to learn. For example, they may read technical papers or speak to co-workers or salespeople about new materials, chemicals and power tools. They take Workplace Hazardous Material Information System (WHMIS) and other safety training. Some may take courses on communication in the workplace.

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