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

  • American Board of Opticianry Certified Master Optician (ABO Certified Master Optician)
  • American Board of Opticianry Certified Optician (ABO Certified Optician)
  • Certified Optician
  • Contact Lens Fitter
  • Contact Lens Technician
  • Dispensing and Measuring Optician
  • Dispensing Optician
  • Dispensing Optician Apprentice
  • Eyeglass Fitter
  • Laboratory Technician

What They Do

  • Verify that finished lenses are ground to specifications.
  • Prepare work orders and instructions for grinding lenses and fabricating eyeglasses.
  • Measure clients' bridge and eye size, temple length, vertex distance, pupillary distance, and optical centers of eyes, using measuring devices.
  • Heat, shape, or bend plastic or metal frames to adjust eyeglasses to fit clients, using pliers and hands.
  • Evaluate prescriptions in conjunction with clients' vocational and avocational visual requirements.
  • Assist clients in selecting frames according to style and color, and ensure that frames are coordinated with facial and eye measurements and optical prescriptions.
  • Fabricate lenses to meet prescription specifications.
  • Maintain records of customer prescriptions, work orders, and payments.
  • Recommend specific lenses, lens coatings, and frames to suit client needs.
  • Instruct clients in how to wear and care for eyeglasses.

Interests

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

This means people who work in this occupation generally have Enterprising interests, but also prefer Conventional and Realistic 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.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • 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.
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.

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.
  • Active Learning - Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
  • Service Orientation - Actively looking for ways to help people.
  • Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

Education Required

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

LMI Region

Wages

In 2013, the average annual wage in United States was $35,710 with most people making between $21,290 and $54,490

Outlook

1.61%
avg. annual growth

During 2010, this occupation employed approximately 62,000 people in United States. It is projected that there will be 80,000 employed in 2020.

This occupation will have about 1,000 openings due to growth and about 29,000 replacement openings for approximately 30,000 total annual openings.