7381 Printing press operators

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Lead statement

Printing press operators set up and operate sheet and web-fed presses to print text, illustrations and designs on a wide variety of materials such as paper, plastic, glass, leather and metal. They are employed by commercial printing companies; newspapers, magazines, and other publishing companies; and establishments in the public and private sectors that have in-house printing departments.

Example Titles

  • apprentice pressman/woman
  • assistant pressman/woman
  • first pressman/woman
  • flexographic press operator
  • offset press operator
  • printing press operator
  • rotogravure pressman/woman – printing

Main duties

Printing press operators perform some or all of the following duties:

  • Review job orders to determine job specifications such as production time, colour sequence and quantities required, and advise press crew of these specifications
  • Mount plates or cylinders and make necessary adjustments
  • Fill ink fountains and take measurements, make adjustments and determine settings to control colour and viscosity
  • Set up press and check samples for ink coverage, alignment and registration
  • Monitor regular press runs for quality and consistency using computer control console and make adjustments as required
  • Remove and clean plates and cylinders at end of press run
  • Direct activities of press crew and ensure that safety procedures are adhered to.

Employment requirements

  • Completion of secondary school is usually required.
  • Completion of a college program in printing technology or A combination of on-the-job training and specialized high school, college or industry courses is usually required.
  • Trade certification is available, but voluntary, in Québec.

Additional information

  • Progression to supervisory positions, such as pressroom supervisor, is possible with experience.

Exclusions