Opticians, Dispensing

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About the Job

Design, measure, fit, and adapt lenses and frames for client according to written optical prescription or specification. Assist client with inserting, removing, and caring for contact lenses. Assist client with selecting frames. Measure customer for size of eyeglasses and coordinate frames with facial and eye measurements and optical prescription. Prepare work order for optical laboratory containing instructions for grinding and mounting lenses in frames. Verify exactness of finished lens spectacles. Adjust frame and lens position to fit client. May shape or reshape frames. Includes contact lens opticians.

It is also Called

  • Optometric Technician
  • Optometric Assistant
  • Optician Apprentice
  • Optician
  • Optical Technician
  • Optical Manager
  • Optical Dispenser
  • Optical Assistant
  • Ophthalmic Dispenser
  • Licensed Optician
show all

What They Do

  • Grind lens edges, or apply coatings to lenses.
  • Arrange and maintain displays of optical merchandise.
  • Supervise the training of student opticians.
  • Perform administrative duties such as tracking inventory and sales, submitting patient insurance information, and performing simple bookkeeping.
  • Repair damaged frames.
  • Order and purchase frames and lenses.
  • Obtain a customer's previous record, or verify a prescription with the examining optometrist or ophthalmologist.
  • Assemble eyeglasses by cutting and edging lenses, and fitting the lenses into frames.
  • Prepare work orders and instructions for grinding lenses and fabricating eyeglasses.
  • Instruct clients in how to wear and care for eyeglasses.

Interests

People who work in this occupation generally have the interest code: CI.

This means people who work in this occupation generally have Conventional interests, but also prefer Investigative environments.

Work Values

People who work in this occupation generally prize Independence, but also value Relationships and Support in their jobs.

Things They Need to Know

  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Sales and Marketing - Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Clerical - Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.

Things They Need to Be Able to Do

  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • 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.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Service Orientation - Actively looking for ways to help people.
  • Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Education Required

Most occupations in this zone require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.

Wages

In 2016, the average annual wage in Pennsylvania was $36,950 with most people making between $23,100 and $52,050

Outlook

1.41%
avg. annual growth

During 2014, this occupation employed approximately 3,190 people in Pennsylvania. It is projected that there will be 3,640 employed in 2024.

This occupation will have about 45 openings due to growth and about 85 replacement openings for approximately 130 total annual openings.



Pennsylvania Department of Education