a dark blue TraitLab logo
Sign up

Have an account? Sign in

Career profile Engraver

Also known as Acid Etch Operator, Award Machine Operator, Chemical Engraver, Electronic Engraver, Engraver, Etcher, Laser Engraver, Photo Engraver, Screen Making Technician, Wet Process Technician


Also known as Acid Etch Operator, Award Machine Operator, Chemical Engraver

Interests Profile
  • Realistic
  • Conventional
  • Artistic
Pay Range
$21,620 - $55,140 (annual)
Required Skills
  • Reading Comprehension
  • Monitoring
  • Operations Monitoring
Knowledge Areas
  • Production and Processing
  • Customer and Personal Service
  • Design
Core tasks
  • Inspect etched work for depth of etching, uniformity, and defects, using calibrated microscopes, gauges, fingers, or magnifying lenses.
  • Prepare etching chemicals according to formulas, diluting acid with water to obtain solutions of specified concentration.
  • Prepare workpieces for etching or engraving by cutting, sanding, cleaning, polishing, or treating them with wax, acid resist, lime, etching powder, or light-sensitive enamel.
Is Engraver the right career path for you?

Would Engraver be a good fit for you?

Explore how your personality fits with Engraver and hundreds of other career paths.

Get started with TraitLab

What does an Engraver do?

Engravers engrave or etch metal, wood, rubber, or other materials.

In addition, Engravers includes such workers as etcher-circuit processors, pantograph engravers, and silk screen etchers.

What kind of tasks does an Engraver perform regularly?

Engravers are often responsible for overseeing or executing some or all of the following tasks:

  • Inspect etched work for depth of etching, uniformity, and defects, using calibrated microscopes, gauges, fingers, or magnifying lenses.
  • Examine sketches, diagrams, samples, blueprints, or photographs to decide how designs are to be etched, cut, or engraved onto workpieces.
  • Clean and polish engraved areas.

The above responsibilities are specific to Engravers. More generally, Engravers are involved in several broader types of activities:

Getting Information
Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
Controlling Machines and Processes
Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).
Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work
Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events
Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
Handling and Moving Objects
Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.

What is an Engraver salary?

The median salary for an Engraver is $31,790, and the average salary is $35,230. Both the median and average roughly describe the middle of the Engraver salary range, but the average is more easily affected by extremely high or low salaries.

Many Engravers earn significantly more or less than the average, due to several factors. About 10% of Engravers earn less than $21,620 per year, 25% earn less than $25,630, 75% earn less than $42,090, and 90% earn less than $55,140.

Between the years of 2020 and 2030, the number of Engravers is expected to change by 2.0%, and there should be roughly 1,300 open positions for Engravers every year.

Median annual salary
Typical salary range
$21,620 - $55,140
Projected growth (2020 - 2030)

What personality traits are common among Engravers?


Career interests describe a person's preferences for different types of working environments and activities. When a person's interest match the demands of an occupation, people are usually more engaged and satisfied in that role.

Compared to most occupations, those who work as an Engraver are usually higher in their Realistic interests.

Engravers typically have very strong Realistic interests. Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.


People differ in their values, or what is most important to them for building job satisfaction and fulfillment.

Compared to most people, those working as an Engraver tend to value Support, Relationships, and Independence.

Most importantly, Engravers moderately value Support. Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees.

Second, Engravers moderately value Relationships. Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment.

Lastly, Engravers moderately value Independence. Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions.

Psychological Demands

Each occupation brings its own set of psychological demands, which describe the characteristics necessary to perform the job well.

In order to perform their job successfully, people who work as Engravers must consistently demonstrate qualities such as attention to detail, independence, and dependability.

Below, you'll find a list of qualities typically required of Engravers, ranked by importance:

Attention to Detail
Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.

What education and training do Engravers need?

Working as an Engraver usually requires a high school diploma.

Engravers need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with this occupation.

Educational degrees among Engravers

  • 13.3% did not complete high school or secondary school
  • 28.1% completed high school or secondary school
  • 24.1% completed some college coursework
  • 8.6% earned a Associate's degree
  • 23.8% earned a Bachelor's degree
  • 2.1% earned a Master's degree

Knowledge and expertise required by Engravers

Engravers may benefit from understanding of specialized subject areas, such as production and processing, customer and personal service, or design knowledge.

The list below shows several areas in which most Engravers might want to build proficiency, ranked by importance.

Production and Processing
Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
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.
Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
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.

Important Abilities needed by Engravers

Engravers must develop a particular set of abilities to perform their job well. Abilities are individual capacities that influence a person's information processing, sensory perception, motor coordination, and physical strength or endurance. Individuals may naturally have certain abilities without explicit training, but most abilities can be sharpened somewhat through practice.

For example, Engravers need abilities such as near vision, arm-hand steadiness, and control precision in order to perform their job at a high level. The list below shows several important abilities for Engravers, ranked by their relative importance.

Near Vision
The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
Arm-Hand Steadiness
The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.
Control Precision
The ability to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions.
Oral Comprehension
The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
Oral Expression
The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.

Critical Skills needed by Engravers

Skills are developed capacities that enable people to function effectively in real-world settings. Unlike abilities, skills are typically easier to build through practice and experience. Skills influence effectiveness in areas such as learning, working with others, design, troubleshooting, and more.

Engravers frequently use skills like reading comprehension, monitoring, and operations monitoring to perform their job effectively. The list below shows several critical skills for Engravers, ranked by their relative importance.

Reading Comprehension
Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work-related documents.
Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
Operations Monitoring
Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
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.
Talking to others to convey information effectively.

What is the source of this information?

The information provided on this page is adapted from data and descriptions published by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration under the CC BY 4.0 license. TraitLab has modified some information for ease of use and reading, and the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment, and Training Administration has not approved, endorsed, or tested these modifications.

If you have any questions or suggestions about this information, please send a message.