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Textile technologist

Textile technologists design, develop and produce fibres, yarns and fabrics.

Salary, a pound sign Salary: £21,000 to £45,000 average per year
Hours, a clock face Hours: 37 to 40 per week

1. Entry requirements

You’ll usually need a degree. Relevant subjects include:

  • maths
  • textile science
  • materials science or technology
  • chemical or physical sciences
  • production or manufacturing engineering

You could also get into the industry as a textile operative or technician and work your way up.

You could get into this job through an apprenticeship.

Creative Skillset has information on careers in the textile industry and how to become a textile technologist.

2. Skills required

You’ll need:

  • strong practical skills
  • IT skills
  • the ability to lead a team
  • creativity and problem-solving skills
  • organisational skills

3. What you'll do

Your day-to-day duties may include:

  • developing new fibres
  • working with designers and customers to meet their needs
  • finding ways to improve the look, feel and lasting quality of fabrics
  • developing and testing chemical processes 
  • creating new colours for dyeing and printing processes
  • researching production methods to keep costs under control
  • programming new processes into computers for textile machinery
  • overseeing the production process and visiting suppliers
  • checking the quality of materials and final products

4. Salary

Starter: £21,000

Experienced: £25,000 to £35,000

Highly Experienced: £45,000

These figures are a guide.

5. Working hours, patterns and environment

You’ll usually work 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday. You may need to work longer hours to meet deadlines.

You’ll be based in an office, laboratory or factory. You may also travel to meet suppliers and customers, and may need to stay away overnight or travel overseas.

6. Career path and progression

With experience, you could progress to senior technologist or move into a specialist area like research and development or quality management. 

You could also move into related areas like sales and marketing or general management.

You could become self-employed and work as a consultant to different companies.

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Last updated: 08 December 2016