Pest Control Workers
Apply or release chemical solutions or toxic gases and set traps to kill or remove pests and vermin that infest buildings and surrounding areas.
Sample of reported job titles: Certified Pest Control Technician, Commercial Pest Control Technician, Exterminator, Pest Control Applicator, Pest Control Chemical Technician, Pest Control Operator, Pest Control Technician, Pest Technician, Residential Pest Control Technician, Termite Technician
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Tasks | Technology Skills | Tools Used | Knowledge | Skills | Abilities | Work Activities | Detailed Work Activities | Work Context | Job Zone | Education | Credentials | Interests | Work Styles | Work Values | Related Occupations | Wages & Employment | Job Openings | Additional Information
- Record work activities performed.
- Inspect premises to identify infestation source and extent of damage to property, wall, or roof porosity and access to infested locations.
- Recommend treatment and prevention methods for pest problems to clients.
- Spray or dust chemical solutions, powders, or gases into rooms, onto clothing, furnishings, or wood, or over marshlands, ditches, or catch basins.
- Clean work site after completion of job.
- Drive truck equipped with power spraying equipment.
- Measure area dimensions requiring treatment, calculate fumigant requirements, and estimate cost for service.
- Study preliminary reports or diagrams of infested area and determine treatment type required to eliminate and prevent recurrence of infestation.
- Direct, or assist other workers in, treatment or extermination processes to eliminate or control rodents, insects, or weeds.
- Post warning signs and lock building doors to secure area to be fumigated.
- Set mechanical traps, or place poisonous paste or bait in sewers, burrows, or ditches.
- Cut or bore openings in building or surrounding concrete, access infested areas, insert nozzle, and inject pesticide to impregnate ground.
- Clean and remove blockages from infested areas to facilitate spraying procedures and provide drainage, using brooms, mops, shovels, or rakes.
Find occupations related to multiple tasks
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- Accounting software — Intuit QuickBooks
- Calendar and scheduling software — Work scheduling software
- Cloud-based data access and sharing software — Microsoft SharePoint
- Data base user interface and query software — Database software ; Marathon Data Systems PestPac
- Electronic mail software — Email software
- Inventory management software — Supply inventory software
- Office suite software — Microsoft Office
- Spreadsheet software — Microsoft Excel
- Video creation and editing software — YouTube
- Word processing software — Microsoft Word ; Report writing software
Hot Technology — a technology requirement frequently included in employer job postings.
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- 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.
- Public Safety and Security — Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
- English Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
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- 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.
- Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions, or approaches to problems.
- Monitoring — Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
- Speaking — Talking to others to convey information effectively.
- Writing — Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
- Time Management — Managing one’s own time and the time of others.
- Social Perceptiveness — Being aware of others’ reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
- Complex Problem Solving — Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
- Service Orientation — Actively looking for ways to help people.
- Active Learning — Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
- Coordination — Adjusting actions in relation to others’ actions.
- Judgment and Decision Making — Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
- Negotiation — Bringing others together and trying to reconcile differences.
- Persuasion — Persuading others to change their minds or behavior.
- Management of Personnel Resources — Motivating, developing, and directing people as they work, identifying the best people for the job.
- Operation and Control — Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
- Operations Monitoring — Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
- Reading Comprehension — Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work-related documents.
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- Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
- 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.
- Speech Clarity — The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
- Deductive Reasoning — The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
- Problem Sensitivity — The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing that there is a problem.
- Speech Recognition — The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
- Written Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
- Far Vision — The ability to see details at a distance.
- Inductive Reasoning — The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
- Category Flexibility — The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
- Flexibility of Closure — The ability to identify or detect a known pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) that is hidden in other distracting material.
- Information Ordering — The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
- Written Comprehension — The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
- 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.
- Extent Flexibility — The ability to bend, stretch, twist, or reach with your body, arms, and/or legs.
- 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.
- Selective Attention — The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.
- Time Sharing — The ability to shift back and forth between two or more activities or sources of information (such as speech, sounds, touch, or other sources).
- Trunk Strength — The ability to use your abdominal and lower back muscles to support part of the body repeatedly or continuously over time without “giving out” or fatiguing.
- Visual Color Discrimination — The ability to match or detect differences between colors, including shades of color and brightness.
- Visualization — The ability to imagine how something will look after it is moved around or when its parts are moved or rearranged.
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- Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
- Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
- Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment — Running, maneuvering, navigating, or driving vehicles or mechanized equipment, such as forklifts, passenger vehicles, aircraft, or watercraft.
- Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Materials — Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
- Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
- Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates — Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
- Communicating with People Outside the Organization — Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.
- Performing for or Working Directly with the Public — Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.
- Monitoring Processes, Materials, or Surroundings — Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
- Performing General Physical Activities — Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling materials.
- Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge — Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
- Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships — Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
- Documenting/Recording Information — Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
- Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work — Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
- Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards — Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
- Handling and Moving Objects — Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.
- Scheduling Work and Activities — Scheduling events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others.
- Thinking Creatively — Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.
- Processing Information — Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
- Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others — Handling complaints, settling disputes, and resolving grievances and conflicts, or otherwise negotiating with others.
- Selling or Influencing Others — Convincing others to buy merchandise/goods or to otherwise change their minds or actions.
- 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.
- Judging the Qualities of Objects, Services, or People — Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.
- Developing Objectives and Strategies — Establishing long-range objectives and specifying the strategies and actions to achieve them.
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Detailed Work Activities
- Document work hours or activities.
- Inspect buildings or grounds to determine condition.
- Recommend products or services to customers.
- Block physical access to restricted areas.
- Notify others of emergencies, problems, or hazards.
- Treat greenery or surfaces with protective substances.
- Clean facilities or sites.
- Drive trucks or other vehicles to or at work sites.
- Estimate maintenance service requirements or costs.
- Evaluate reports or designs to determine work needs.
- Treat facilities to eliminate pests.
- Supervise maintenance workers.
- Seal gaps or cracks to prevent leakage or moisture intrusion.
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- In an Enclosed Vehicle or Equipment — 95% responded “Every day.”
- Face-to-Face Discussions — 81% responded “Every day.”
- Outdoors, Exposed to Weather — 81% responded “Every day.”
- Telephone — 72% responded “Every day.”
- Exposed to Contaminants — 66% responded “Every day.”
- Freedom to Make Decisions — 52% responded “Some freedom.”
- Contact With Others — 55% responded “Constant contact with others.”
- Frequency of Decision Making — 64% responded “Every day.”
- Structured versus Unstructured Work — 50% responded “A lot of freedom.”
- Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results — 56% responded “Important results.”
- Time Pressure — 43% responded “Every day.”
- Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — 41% responded “Very important.”
- Spend Time Using Your Hands to Handle, Control, or Feel Objects, Tools, or Controls — 48% responded “More than half the time.”
- Wear Common Protective or Safety Equipment such as Safety Shoes, Glasses, Gloves, Hearing Protection, Hard Hats, or Life Jackets — 47% responded “Every day.”
- Deal With External Customers — 44% responded “Extremely important.”
- Spend Time Walking and Running — 66% responded “More than half the time.”
- Duration of Typical Work Week — 51% responded “40 hours.”
- Spend Time Standing — 58% responded “More than half the time.”
- Spend Time Making Repetitive Motions — 55% responded “More than half the time.”
- Very Hot or Cold Temperatures — 45% responded “Once a month or more but not every week.”
- Exposed to Minor Burns, Cuts, Bites, or Stings — 35% responded “Every day.”
- Cramped Work Space, Awkward Positions — 48% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”
- Exposed to Hazardous Conditions — 52% responded “Every day.”
- Importance of Repeating Same Tasks — 34% responded “Important.”
- Consequence of Error — 32% responded “Serious.”
- Extremely Bright or Inadequate Lighting — 35% responded “Once a month or more but not every week.”
- Indoors, Environmentally Controlled — 36% responded “Every day.”
- Indoors, Not Environmentally Controlled — 40% responded “Every day.”
- Spend Time Bending or Twisting the Body — 40% responded “Less than half the time.”
- Work With Work Group or Team — 32% responded “Important.”
- Level of Competition — 37% responded “Moderately competitive.”
- Wear Specialized Protective or Safety Equipment such as Breathing Apparatus, Safety Harness, Full Protection Suits, or Radiation Protection — 39% responded “Once a month or more but not every week.”
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|Title||Job Zone Two: Some Preparation Needed|
|Education||These occupations usually require a high school diploma.|
|Related Experience||Some previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is usually needed. For example, a teller would benefit from experience working directly with the public.|
|Job Training||Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.|
|Job Zone Examples||These occupations often involve using your knowledge and skills to help others. Examples include orderlies, counter and rental clerks, customer service representatives, security guards, upholsterers, and tellers.|
|SVP Range||(4.0 to < 6.0)|
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Percentage of Respondents
|Education Level Required|
|90||High school diploma or equivalent
|1||Some college, no degree|
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Interest code: RC Want to discover your interests? Take the O*NET Interest Profiler at My Next Move.
- Realistic — 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.
- Conventional — 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.
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- Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical.
- Dependability — Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
- Attention to Detail — Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
- 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.
- Cooperation — Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
- Stress Tolerance — Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high-stress situations.
- Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
- Persistence — Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
- Self-Control — Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
- Adaptability/Flexibility — Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
- Concern for Others — Job requires being sensitive to others’ needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
- Achievement/Effort — Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
- Innovation — Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.
- Analytical Thinking — Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
- Leadership — Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction.
- Social Orientation — Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job.
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- Independence — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
- Support — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical.
- 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. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.
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Wages & Employment Trends
|Median wages (2020)||$18.18 hourly, $37,820 annual|
|Employment (2020)||86,800 employees|
|Projected growth (2020-2030)||Average (5% to 10%)|
|Projected job openings (2020-2030)||12,800|
|Top industries (2020)||
Administrative and Support Services
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2020 wage data and 2020-2030 employment projections . “Projected growth” represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2020-2030). “Projected job openings” represent openings due to growth and replacement.
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Job Openings on the Web
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Sources of Additional Information
Disclaimer: Sources are listed to provide additional information on related jobs, specialties, and/or industries. Links to non-DOL Internet sites are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement.
- Association of Structural Pest Control Regulatory Officials
- National Pest Management Association
- Occupational Outlook Handbook: Pest control workers
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