An optician is an important member of the eye care team who has the primary role of helping clients select and fit eyeglasses. What many people may not realize is that there are many other tasks that an optician must perform. Some states even require that opticians complete a 2-year degree program and an apprenticeship. These programs typically include courses in Math, Science, and English along with courses specific to the opticianry industry. Eyes of Texas offers excellent info on this.
Once an optician has met these requirements, they must often successfully pass the American Board of Opticianry (ABO) Examination and the National Contact Lens Examiners (NCLE) Examination before receiving a license. These requirements prove that there is a high level of competence required to be an optician. Though many states do not impose such requirements, opticians must universally possess the same skill sets regardless of state regulations.
Optical employers favor job candidates who possess credentials, but they also look for very specific personality traits that are conducive to daily interaction with clients. The fact that opticians have such a large impact on the client experience means that they must enjoy dealing with people and be good at resolving any conflicts that might arise. While these qualities may seem straightforward, it isn’t easy to adopt a positive attitude each and every day.
In addition to great interpersonal skills, an optician must demonstrate competence in many technical modalities. The optician must be well versed in both modern fitting standards and current trends in fashion and style. In addition, opticians must be able to interpret prescriptions, collect eye measurements, educate clients about lens treatments and coatings, create work orders, repair broken frames, educate clients on eyeglass and lens care, and keep track of inventory.
The details of the optician job description will vary with each employer, but the tasks mentioned above are nearly universal. If you are considering a career as an optician, you will want to make sure you have the technical skills and training required to perform your job well. If you are considering practicing in a state that has imposed requirements on the opticianry industry, then you will need familiarize yourself with the current rules and regulations prior to seeking employment.
Though the requirements in your state may seem overwhelming, you will find that a career as an optician is extremely rewarding both personally and financially. The time and effort you invest now, in advancing your career, will likely pay dividends for many years to come. In an ever changing healthcare and economic environment, now is the time to take a step toward a brighter future.