Careers

Chemists

Also known as:  Agricultural Chemist, Analytical Chemist, Bench Chemist, Food Chemist, Formulary Chemist, Industrial Chemist, Inorganic Chemist, Laboratory Chemist, Nuclear Chemist, Organic Chemist

ABOUT CHEMIST CAREERS

VIDEO TRANSCRIPT Expand
Chemicals make up our world. Some are natural. Some are made by humans - synthetic. But each chemical has its own particular way of behaving under changing conditions, such as heat, exposure to light, and combination with other substances.

Chemists study how chemicals affect each other and ...
how they interact with the environment. Usually they specialize in a particular kind of chemistry. They use their knowledge to contribute to many deferent fields, from energy development to medicine and food processing. The list of products invented either through the direct involvement of chemists, or through their basic research goes on and on - drugs, fibers, paints, adhesives, cosmetics, and electronic components, to name just a few.

Along with research and product development, chemists also work at chemical manufacturing plants, in production and quality control. To find employment as a chemist, you will almost always need at least a bachelor's degree in chemistry or a related science. Many working chemists have master's degrees or Ph.Ds.

In the years ahead, more openings for chemists are expected in drug manufacturing and firms that provide testing services. For any chemistry position, curiosity, the ability to focus on details, and painstaking follow-through are essential "elements" of success.
SNAPSHOT Expand
Conduct qualitative and quantitative chemical analyses or experiments in laboratories for quality or process control or to develop new products or knowledge.
Leadership
HIGH
Critical decision making
HIGH
Level of responsibilities
HIGH
Job challenge and pressure to meet deadlines
HIGH
Dealing and handling conflict
LOW
Competition for this position
LOW
Communication with others
HIGH
Work closely with team members, clients etc.
HIGH
Comfort of the work setting
HIGH
Exposure to extreme environmental conditions
LOW
Exposure to job hazards
LOW
Physical demands
LOW
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DAILY TASKS Expand
Induce changes in composition of substances by introducing heat, light, energy, or chemical catalysts for quantitative or qualitative analysis.
Confer with scientists or engineers to conduct analyses of research projects, interpret test results, or develop nonstandard tests.
Write technical papers or reports or prepare standards and specifications for processes, facilities, products, or tests.
Compile and analyze test information to determine process or equipment operating efficiency or to diagnose malfunctions.
Develop, improve, or customize products, equipment, formulas, processes, or analytical methods.
Conduct quality control tests.
Prepare test solutions, compounds, or reagents for laboratory personnel to conduct tests.
Direct, coordinate, or advise personnel in test procedures for analyzing components or physical properties of materials.
Analyze organic or inorganic compounds to determine chemical or physical properties, composition, structure, relationships, or reactions, using chromatography, spectroscopy, or spectrophotometry techniques.
Maintain laboratory instruments to ensure proper working order and troubleshoot malfunctions when needed.
MAIN ACTIVITIES Expand
Analyzing Data or Information Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
Processing Information Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
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.
Documenting/Recording Information Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
Interacting With Computers Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
Making Decisions and Solving Problems Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
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.
Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
AREAS OF KNOWLEDGE Expand
Chemistry Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.
Mathematics Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
English Language Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Computers and Electronics Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
Production and Processing Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
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.
Clerical Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.
Engineering and Technology Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
KEY ABILITIES Expand
Oral Comprehension The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
Near Vision The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
Written Comprehension The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
Inductive Reasoning The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
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 there is a problem.
Mathematical Reasoning The ability to choose the right mathematical methods or formulas to solve a problem.
Deductive Reasoning The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
Category Flexibility The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
TOP SKILLS Expand
Science Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
Reading Comprehension Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
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.
Complex Problem Solving Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
Speaking Talking to others to convey information effectively.
Active Learning Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
Writing Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.