Quality control technician

Manufacturing and production

Career outlook for quality control technician

UK Salary Ranges





Currently employed in Scotland


Salary information is provided by the "National Careers Service". "Oxford Economics" supplies job forecasts and employment figures. Due to COVID-19 the jobs market is constantly changing. Some of the information may not reflect the current situation.

What's it like?

You would check that products meet quality standards and are safe for customers to buy.

You would also help to set up and manage quality control systems.

You would:

  • Deal with feedback and complaints from customers
  • Refer issues to managers when needed
  • Assess suppliers
  • Check and update quality control policies
  • Train new staff
  • Write reports for quality managers.
  • Work in a team under the supervision of a quality manager

You would also have specialised tasks depending on where you work.

For example, if you worked in food and drink production, you would:

  • Find and remove faults in the production process
  • Test microbiological, chemical and physical samples
  • Check labels
  • Check that methods are in line with legislation

If you work in manufacturing engineering, you would:

  • Monitor each stage of production
  • Use statistical analysis to make sure that machined parts are within tolerance limits
  • Run tests for defects, for example electric vehicle battery leak detection

You would need technical knowledge of your industry. You would also need good knowledge of quality control standards and legislation.

Working conditions


You would normally work 35 to 40 hours a week, Monday to Friday. In manufacturing, you might work on a shift rota that includes evenings and weekends.


Depending on your industry, you could be based in an office, laboratory or factory production area.

UK employment status





Self employed


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  • Cooperating
  • Verbal communication
  • Working with technology
  • Written communication
  • Problem solving
  • Observation
  • Attention to detail
  • Understanding

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Foundation Apprenticeships

Choosing a Foundation Apprenticeship as one of your subjects in S5 and S6 can help you get a head start with this type of job.

You'll get an SCQF level 6 qualification (the same level as a Higher) plus valuable work placement experience and skills you can't learn in a classroom.

Interested? Find out what's on offer at your school on Apprenticeships.scot.


You would need qualifications at SCQF level 4/5.

A Higher National Diploma (HND, SCQF level 8) or degree (SCQF level 9/10) is required for some roles.

Alternatively you can start in an entry role and take relevant work-based qualifications such as a Chartered Quality Institute (CQI) Certificate in Quality Management (QCF level 3).

Useful subjects

  • English
  • Maths
  • Business management
  • Sciences, technologies or engineering subjects
  • Health & food technologies (hygiene standards)

Helpful to have

Some knowledge of quality standards and working methods will be useful when applying for jobs in quality control. You can find details of these on the British Standards Institution (BSI) website.