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Career and Education Opportunities for Office Machine Operators in Chicago, Illinois

Office machine operators can find both educational opportunities and jobs in the Chicago, Illinois area. There are currently 4,800 working office machine operators in Illinois; this should shrink by 8% to about 4,410 working office machine operators in the state by 2016. This is not quite as good as the national trend for office machine operators, which sees this job pool shrinking by about 7.6% over the next eight years. Office machine operators generally operate one or more of a variety of office machines, such as photocopying, photographic, and duplicating machines, or other office machines.

The income of an office machine operator is about $12 hourly or $26,770 per year on average in Illinois. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $12 per hour or $25,780 yearly on average. Incomes for office machine operators are not quite as good as in the overall category of Secretarial in Illinois, and not quite as good as the overall Secretarial category nationally.

There are two schools within twenty-five miles of Chicago where you can study to be an office machine operator, among 180 schools of higher education total in the Chicago area. Office machine operators usually hold a high school diploma or GED, so you can expect to spend only a short time training to become an office machine operator if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Office Machine Operator

In general, office machine operators operate one or more of a variety of office machines, such as photocopying, photographic, and duplicating machines, or other office machines.

Office machine operators sort and proof completed work. They also load machines with materials such as blank paper or film. Equally important, office machine operators have to monitor machine operation, and make adjustments as needed to insure proper operation. They are often called upon to place original copies in feed trays, feed originals into feed rolls, or position originals on tables beneath camera lenses. They are expected to operate auxiliary machines such as collators, pad and tablet making machines and paper punching, folding and perforating machines. Finally, office machine operators file and store completed documents.

Every day, office machine operators are expected to be able to see details at a very fine level of focus. They need to read and understand documents and reports.

It is important for office machine operators to complete archives of production, including work volumes and outputs and any backlogs. They are often called upon to deliver completed work. They also ready and process papers for use in scanning and microfiche. They are sometimes expected to clean and file master copies or plates. Somewhat less frequently, office machine operators are also expected to operate office machines such as high speed business photocopiers, reader/scanners, addressing machines, stencil-cutting machines, microfilm reader/printers, folding and inserting and binder machines.

and prepare and adjust machines, regulating factors such as speed and number of copies. And finally, they sometimes have to maintain stock of supplies, and requisition any needed items.

Like many other jobs, office machine operators must be thorough and dependable and believe in cooperation and coordination.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Chicago include:

  • Administrative Assistant. Provide high-level administrative support by conducting research, preparing statistical reports, handling information requests, and performing clerical functions such as preparing correspondence, receiving visitors, arranging conference calls, and scheduling meetings. May also train and supervise lower-level clerical staff.
  • Legal Secretary. Perform secretarial duties utilizing legal terminology, procedures, and documents. Prepare legal papers and correspondence, such as summonses, complaints, and subpoenas. May also assist with legal research.
  • Mail Clerk. Prepare incoming and outgoing mail for distribution. Use hand or mail handling machines to time stamp, open, and route incoming mail; and address, seal, and affix postage to outgoing mail or packages. Duties may also include keeping necessary records and completed forms.
  • Medical Secretary. Perform secretarial duties utilizing specific knowledge of medical terminology and hospital, clinic, or laboratory procedures. Duties include scheduling appointments, billing patients, and compiling and recording medical charts, reports, and correspondence.
  • Order Filler. Fill customers' mail and telephone orders from stored merchandise in accordance with specifications on sales slips or order forms. Duties include computing prices of items, completing order receipts, keeping records of out-going orders, and requisitioning additional materials, supplies, and equipment.
  • Production Proofreader. Read transcript or proof type setup to detect and mark for correction any grammatical, typographical, or compositional errors.
  • Secretary. Perform routine clerical and administrative functions such as drafting correspondence, scheduling appointments, organizing and maintaining paper and electronic files, or providing information to callers.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Office Machine Operator Training

Harper College - Palatine, IL

Harper College, 1200 W Algonquin Rd, Palatine, IL 60067-7398. Harper College is a large college located in Palatine, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 15,250 students. Harper College has a less than one year program in General Office Occupations and Clerical Services which graduated two students in 2008.

Morton College - Cicero, IL

Morton College, 3801 S Central Ave, Cicero, IL 60804-4398. Morton College is a small college located in Cicero, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 4,959 students. Morton College has a less than one year program in General Office Occupations and Clerical Services which graduated three students in 2008.


Chicago, Illinois
Chicago, Illinois photo by Dschwen

Chicago is situated in Cook County, Illinois. It has a population of over 2,853,114, which has shrunk by 1.5% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Chicago, 114, is well above the national average. New single-family homes in Chicago are valued at $200,500 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, three hundred eighty-one new homes were built in Chicago, down from eight hundred seventy the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Chicago are health care, educational services, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is construction, professional, scientific, and technical services, and accommodation and food services. The average commute to work is about 35 minutes. More than 25.5% of Chicago residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 10.0%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Chicago is 11.6%, which is greater than Illinois's average of 10.5%.

The percentage of Chicago residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 57.6%, is more than both the national and state average. Southlawn United Methodist Church, Southern Missionary Baptist Church and Lakeside Evangelical Church are all churches located in Chicago. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Muslim Estimate and the Lutheran Church.

Chicago is home to the Five Crossings and the Wrigley Field as well as Monticello Park and Wilson Playground. Shopping centers in the area include Lincoln Village Shopping Center, Market Place at Six Corners Shopping Center and Kimbark Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Chicago can choose from Extended Stay America, Embassy Suites Lakefront and Cottage Inn for temporary stays in the area.