If you like taking a methodical approach to your work, operating and handling equipment and keeping detailed records, you will enjoy working as a Materials Technician. As a materials technicians are involved in the movement of materials in a wide variety of industries including agriculture, forestry, health, manufacturing, mining, oil and gas, transportation and retail industries. They are employed by organizations that produce, process and retail a wide variety of products.
In general, you will:
- Prepares, generates, picks and ships orders
- Receives shipments and ensures that they are complete and in good order
- Processes customer and supplier returns
- Applies inventory management practices and maintains accurate inventory records
- Schedules and arranges transportation of materials using rail, air or road
- Calculates transportation costs and prepares transportation documents
- Maintains material identification records inventory
- Interacts with internal and external customers
- Operates computer systems
- Operates material handling equipment (dollies, hand trucks, pallet jacks, forklifts, cranes, conveyors)
- Handles and stores products in appropriate storage areas
- Supervise warehouse personnel
- Participates in business operations and planning
- Participate in safety programs
- Design and plan warehouses
- Practice Total Quality Management (TQM
Materials technicians may be employed in many different settings and work with a wide variety of materials. Job requirements and responsibilities can vary considerably from one job to another.
This is a non-compulsory trade – individuals can work in the trade without certification if the employer deems the individual to have the skills of a journeyperson. However, individuals who are working in the trade and learning the trade must become a registered apprentice.
Start your career by finding an employer who is willing to indenture you as an apprentice Most materials technicians are located in urban centres where manufacturers, wholesalers and large retailers have their warehouses. Others may be located where large manufacturing facilities are concentrated in non-urban settings (wood products plants, petroleum production facilities, etc.). For the foreseeable future in Alberta, the employment outlook for materials technicians is expected to be average compared to all other occupations.
Journeyperson wage rates vary, but generally range from $13 to $35 an hour, depending upon the level of experience, region of the province and the sector of industry.
With the appropriate training and work experience, individuals can advance into supervisory positions, or into related fields such as purchasing, inventory control or materials management.
Some journeypersons go on to run their own contracting firms – we can help you build your business with our Blue Seal business certificate
The work appeals to people who enjoy taking a methodical approach to their work, operating handling equipment and keeping detailed records. To be successful in the trade, materials technicians must have:
- Physical strength and stamina
- Manual dexterity
- The ability to use proper lifting techniques to lift items up to 18 kilograms
- The ability to work independently
- Good math, communication and computer skills
- The ability to get along well with customers and fellow workers
Upon successfully completing the required working hours and technical training periods, graduates will be awarded journeyperson status by Alberta's Apprenticeship and Industry Training. This s a Red Seal Endorsed trade – a recognizable standard that allows tradespeople to work across Canada.
Admission and Completion
To enter an apprenticeship, you must have the educational qualifications required or recommended education for the trade to which you apply.
Entrance Requirements are monitored and set by Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training.
Successful completion of the following courses:
- English 30-2
- Math 30-3
A pass mark in all five Canadian General Educational Development (GED) tests
Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training Entrance Exam
Apprentices with an Alberta High School Diploma that includes the following courses:
- English 30-2
- Math 30-3
- Physics 20 and Chemistry 20
- Related career and technology studies (CTS) courses
How to register
Registration for technical training is run through Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training. Learn how you can register for your next intake.
After you register
Email is the primary source of communication after you have registered for your intake. Please ensure your personal email account is managed appropriately to receive our emails, files and communications. We recommend you add the sait.ca domain to your safe senders' list or you risk missing critical email messages.
Apprentices in this trade will spend three years (three 12-month periods) of on-the-job training and technical training at SAIT. Technical training will be 6 weeks each year.
|Find an employer willing to indenture you as an apprentice|
|Apply as an apprentice with AIT and your employer|
|Sign contract and recieve record book|
|Written entrance examination or get approved for previous transcripts|
|Complete first period of on-the-job-training (1500 hours)|
|Register at SAIT|
|Attend first period of technical training for 6 weeks at SAIT|
|Pass first period Trade Qualification Exam|
|Complete second period of on-the-job training (1500 hours)|
|Register at SAIT|
|Attend second period of technical training for 6 weeks at SAIT|
|Pass second period Trade Qualification Exam|
|Complete third period of on-the-job training (1500 hours)|
|Register at SAIT|
|Attend third period of technical training for 6 weeks at SAIT|
|Pass third period Trade Qualification Exam|
|Become a Journeyperson|
Technical Training Performance
To be successful in technical training, an apprentice must pass each section of the course and pass the AIT exam. The passing grade for each section in the course is a 65%. A passing mark on each Trade Qualification Exam and the Interprovincial Qualification (or Red Seal Exam) is 70%.
Domestic tuition and fees*
|Period||Tuition fees||SAIT fees||Saitsa fees||Lab & Material fees||2020/21 total|
Student support fee: $25
Student technology fee: $25
Books and supplies*
- Books or modules along with other items for class average out to $600 per period.
- It is recommended that you do not purchase books or modules ahead of time as they might be outdated by the time you attend classes and they cannot be returned to the bookstore.
- Personal Protective Equipment will be required for the program, which may be an additional cost to apprentices.
*Tuition, fees, books and supply costs are subject to change.
Membership to the SAIT Wellness centre - including an ice arena, swimming/diving pool, gymnasium, squash and racquetteball courts and eight room is available to apprentices at a discounted rate.
Financial planning tool
Our apprenticeship cost calculator can help you make a financial plan by identifying and adding up your expected expenses while attending SAIT — find out exactly how much money you need to save, seek or borrow to get you through your studies.