Water Treatment Worker

Job Description:

Water quality technicians treat and process clean water and waste water.

Job Category:
Energy & Utilities

What you will do:

In your day-to-day tasks you may:

  • operate equipment to treat sewage
  • clean and maintain tanks and filters
  • add chemicals and microbes to treat water
  • take readings and keep accurate records
  • check drinking water samples for quality
  • ensure site security and safety


You’ll need:

  • knowledge of public safety and security
  • the ability to use, repair and maintain machines and tools
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device
  • the ability to operate and control equipment

As well as:

  • the ability to analyse quality or performance
  • observation, recording and organisational skills
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • the ability to work on your own (drive)
  • analytical thinking skills
Illustration of employee looking at workspace

Entry Requirements:

The specific GCSE subjects required to become a Water Treatment Worker can vary depending on the employer and the specific role within the field. Generally, employers in the water treatment industry look for candidates with a good foundation in science and math, as well as other relevant skills. Here are some GCSE subjects that can be beneficial for aspiring Water Treatment Workers:

  1. Science: It’s important to have a solid understanding of scientific principles, particularly in subjects like chemistry and biology. Water treatment involves processes that require a good grasp of these concepts.
  2. Mathematics: Strong mathematical skills are essential for tasks such as calculating chemical dosages, flow rates, and other measurements related to water treatment.
  3. English: Good communication skills are important in any job. English GCSE can help you develop your written and verbal communication skills, which are important for documenting processes, writing reports, and interacting with colleagues and supervisors.
  4. Geography: While not a strict requirement, a GCSE in geography can be useful because it may cover topics related to water systems and environmental geography, which are relevant to the water treatment industry.
  5. Engineering and Technology: Some water treatment roles, especially those involving maintenance and operation of treatment facilities, may benefit from GCSE subjects related to engineering and technology. While not always mandatory, these subjects can provide a foundation for understanding equipment and systems.

Post School

You can get into this job through:

  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • applying directly

You could do a college course, which would teach you some of the skills and knowledge you need in this job. Relevant subjects in the UK include the Level 2 or 3 Diploma in Water Engineering with a choice of 4 pathways.

Apprenticeships relevant to this role, in the UK,  include:

  • Level 2 Water process operative
  • Level 3 Water treatment technician

Direct Application
You could apply directly to work as a water treatment worker. School English, maths and a science subject could be a requirement.

Experience of working in industrial plant maintenance may give you an advantage.

Working Hours and Environment:

You could work in a control room.

Your working environment may be dirty, physically demanding, cramped, at height and outdoors in all weathers.

You may need to wear protective clothing.

Career Path & Progression:

With experience, you could become a team leader. With further training, you could become an engineering technician or a water engineer.