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Assembly Line Worker
Assembly line workers are responsible for performing one task or a set of tasks in an assembly process. Assembly lines are found in various factories where products being manufactured consist of a number of components assembled to form a complete unit.

Assembly line workers usually stand alongside a conveyor system, perform the necessary task, and allow the product to pass on to the next worker. Most assembly line work is performed by hand, but sometimes tools are used. Commonly used tools are screwdrivers, pliers, soldering irons and tools specifically designed for certain processes. A typical assembly line task is drilling holes in an item for screws and passing the item on for the next worker to fix the screws into the holes.

Satisfying Aspects
- working as part of a team
- does not usually require high education level
- working with one's hands

Demanding aspects
- work can be very monotonous
- requires steady concentration for long periods
- some types of work can be stressful and tiring

An assembly line worker should:
- be prepared to do repetitive work without getting bored or making mistakes
- be able to concentrate for long periods of time
- be able to work as part of a team
- be able to work to deadlines
- be prepared to work overtime
- manual dexterity
- have good eye-hand coordination
- be physically fit, although people with controlled epilepsy and orthopaedic impairments should also be able to do the work

School Subjects
Grade 10 Certificate or Technical Certificate with literacy and numerical skills at level four.

Compulsory Subjects: None
Recommended Subjects: Physical Sciences

There are three ways to qualify as a registered artisan:

1. An apprenticeship is a 4-year contract between company and apprentice, comprising a 12-week theoretical training, which includes 4 subjects at national exam level.

2. A learnership is a contract between learner, employer and training provider, which provides for the achievement of a qualification, run over approximately 3 one-year periods.

3. FET colleges offer theoretical training to prospective artisans via the new National Certificate Vocational (NCV). During this 3-year programme (levels 2 to 4), learners complete a school-leaving certificate (this NCV) similar to the new National Senior Certificate (NSC) in schools. They are also exposed to a practical workshop component.

All learners are required to complete a practical internship under the supervision of an experienced artisan. As an alternative to doing the full qualification, a learner can apply to do a skills programme at a FET College. Skills programmes are short practical hands-on courses.

For more information about qualifications and skills programmes, contact your nearest FET College. FET Colleges are accredited and funded by a SETA (Sector Education and Training Authority) such as MERSETA or CHIETA. They also receive bursary funding through the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) for the NCV programme.

Learners must all receive training in occupational safety and first aid, fire-fighting and preventative security measures. Learners study everything about the installation, maintenance and repair of all electrical equipment. They must also become familiar with municipal legislation relevant to electricity supply and consumption.

Experienced workers train learner assembly line workers on the job. Each facet of the assembly process requires specialized training. Retraining is sometimes necessary when a worker is transferred.

- Metal factories
- Engineering factories
- Motor industry

Further information is obtainable from employers and organizations in the field of engineering and metal manufacturing, as well as the motor industry.