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Career profile Watch Mechanic

Also known as Antique Clock Repairer, Clock Repair Technician, Clock Repairer, Watch and Clock Repairer, Watch Estimator, Watch Repair Person, Watch Repair Technician, Watch Repairer, Watch Technician (Watch Tech)

Watch Mechanic

Also known as Antique Clock Repairer, Clock Repair Technician, Clock Repairer

Interests Profile
  • Realistic
  • Conventional
  • Investigative
Pay Range
$22,780 - $76,060 (annual)
Required Skills
  • Repairing
  • Operations Monitoring
  • Critical Thinking
Knowledge Areas
  • Customer and Personal Service
  • Administration and Management
  • Mechanical
Core tasks
  • Clean, rinse, and dry timepiece parts, using solutions and ultrasonic or mechanical watch-cleaning machines.
  • Adjust timing regulators, using truing calipers, watch-rate recorders, and tweezers.
  • Reassemble timepieces, replacing glass faces and batteries, before returning them to customers.
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What does a Watch Mechanic do?

Watch Mechanics repair, clean, and adjust mechanisms of timing instruments, such as watches and clocks.

In addition, Watch Mechanics includes watchmakers, watch technicians, and mechanical timepiece repairers.

What kind of tasks does a Watch Mechanic perform regularly?

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

  • Clean, rinse, and dry timepiece parts, using solutions and ultrasonic or mechanical watch-cleaning machines.
  • Adjust timing regulators, using truing calipers, watch-rate recorders, and tweezers.
  • Reassemble timepieces, replacing glass faces and batteries, before returning them to customers.
  • Disassemble timepieces and inspect them for defective, worn, misaligned, or rusty parts, using loupes.
  • Repair or replace broken, damaged, or worn parts on timepieces, using lathes, drill presses, and hand tools.
  • Oil moving parts of timepieces.
  • Estimate repair costs and timepiece values.
  • Test timepiece accuracy and performance, using meters and other electronic instruments.
  • Perform regular adjustment and maintenance on timepieces, watch cases, and watch bands.
  • Order supplies, including replacement parts, for timing instruments.
  • Gather information from customers about a timepiece's problems and its service history.
  • Test and replace batteries and other electronic components.
  • Record quantities and types of timepieces repaired, serial and model numbers of items, work performed, and charges for repairs.
  • Demagnetize mechanisms, using demagnetizing machines.
  • Fabricate parts for watches and clocks, using small lathes and other machines.

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

Repairing and Maintaining Mechanical Equipment
Servicing, repairing, adjusting, and testing machines, devices, moving parts, and equipment that operate primarily on the basis of mechanical (not electronic) principles.
Monitoring Processes, Materials, or Surroundings
Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events
Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
Estimating the Quantifiable Characteristics of Products, Events, or Information
Estimating sizes, distances, and quantities; or determining time, costs, resources, or materials needed to perform a work activity.
Making Decisions and Solving Problems
Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.

What is a Watch Mechanic salary?

The median salary for a Watch Mechanic is $45,290, and the average salary is $48,560. Both the median and average roughly describe the middle of the Watch Mechanic salary range, but the average is more easily affected by extremely high or low salaries.

Many Watch Mechanics earn significantly more or less than the average, due to several factors. About 10% of Watch Mechanics earn less than $22,780 per year, 25% earn less than $32,960, 75% earn less than $59,370, and 90% earn less than $76,060.

Between the years of 2020 and 2030, the number of Watch Mechanics is expected to change by -25.0%, and there should be roughly 200 open positions for Watch Mechanics every year.

Median annual salary
$45,290
Typical salary range
$22,780 - $76,060
Projected growth (2020 - 2030)
-25.0%

What personality traits are common among Watch Mechanics?

Interests

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 a Watch Mechanic are usually higher in their Realistic, Conventional, and Investigative interests.

Watch Mechanics 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.

Also, Watch Mechanics typically have moderate Conventional interests. Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.

Lastly, Watch Mechanics typically have moderate Investigative interests. Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.

Values

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 a Watch Mechanic tend to value Independence, Support, and Relationships.

Most importantly, Watch Mechanics moderately value Independence. Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions.

Second, Watch Mechanics somewhat value Support. Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees.

Lastly, Watch Mechanics somewhat 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.

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 Watch Mechanics must consistently demonstrate qualities such as attention to detail, integrity, and self-control.

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

Attention to Detail
Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Integrity
Job requires being honest and ethical.
Self-Control
Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
Analytical Thinking
Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
Independence
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.

What education and training do Watch Mechanics need?

Watch Mechanics often have training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.

Watch Mechanics usually need one or two years of training involving both on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with this occupation.

Educational degrees among Watch Mechanics

  • 3.5% did not complete high school or secondary school
  • 25.1% completed high school or secondary school
  • 27.4% completed some college coursework
  • 20.4% earned a Associate's degree
  • 19.4% earned a Bachelor's degree
  • 3.7% earned a Master's degree
  • 0.6% earned a doctorate or professional degree

Knowledge and expertise required by Watch Mechanics

Watch Mechanics may benefit from understanding of specialized subject areas, such as customer and personal service, administration and management, or mechanical knowledge.

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

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.
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.
Mechanical
Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
Administrative
Knowledge of administrative and office procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and workplace terminology.
Production and Processing
Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.

Important Abilities needed by Watch Mechanics

Watch Mechanics 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, Watch Mechanics need abilities such as finger dexterity, arm-hand steadiness, and control precision in order to perform their job at a high level. The list below shows several important abilities for Watch Mechanics, ranked by their relative importance.

Finger Dexterity
The ability to make precisely coordinated movements of the fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble very small objects.
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.
Near Vision
The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
Manual Dexterity
The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.

Critical Skills needed by Watch Mechanics

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.

Watch Mechanics frequently use skills like repairing, operations monitoring, and critical thinking to perform their job effectively. The list below shows several critical skills for Watch Mechanics, ranked by their relative importance.

Repairing
Repairing machines or systems using the needed tools.
Operations Monitoring
Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
Critical Thinking
Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions, or approaches to problems.
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.
Speaking
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.

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