What Does A Surveying Technician Do And How To Become One

A survey technician is a key position in the construction and engineering field. By learning the skills necessary to become a survey technician, you can progress in your career and become a valuable asset in the field. 

So, if you already have an interest in survey or engineering, you could choose to start a career as a survey technician. 

This article will discuss what a survey technician do and how to become one. 

Further, it’ll give you all the necessary information you need on what it takes to be a survey technician, how lucrative the job is and much more as all these will enable you to make an informed decision on your career choice. 

Article Road Map

Common Responsibilities For a Surveying Technician include:

  • Establish and use surveying equipment, such as electronic distance measuring devices
  • Insert pegs in the ground to mark various components individually.
  • Look up past survey data
  • Note features and measurements
  • Enter data into a computer so it may be analyzed
  • Utilize computer-aided design (CAD) software to produce drawings.
  • Assist in creating 3D models and layouts
  • Work with other survey professionals to execute the survey safely, especially in regions with a lot of traffic.

What is a Survey Technician?

A survey technician measures and records the land features in and around a construction site, records their proportion and provides designers, engineers, and builders with the studied data.

By gathering information and creating maps for the engineering, construction, and environmental industries, surveying and mapping technicians support photogrammetrists, site supervisors, and navigators.

 Together with a supervisor and these other technicians, they function as a survey party.

The information gathered is used to locate natural resources, define property lines, and construct roads and bridges.

While a mapping technician analyzes geographic data to create maps and designs, survey technicians travel to designated places to measure the terrain.

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Steps To Become A Surveying Technician 

The following steps are the basic steps you need to follow if you want to pursue a career as a survey technician. 

1. Earn a high school diploma or Equivalent

For the majority of survey technician positions, a high school diploma, GED, or other equivalent is required. 

Aspiring survey technicians should take algebra, geometry, trigonometry, computer science, and drafting classes in high school if they are offered.

 You can start preparing yourself for survey technician training and entry-level survey technician jobs by taking these courses.

2. Complete An Engineering Related Degree

A minimum of an associate’s degree in surveying technology, geomatics, or a similar discipline may be preferred by some firms.

If you’re applying to any survey technician positions with sophisticated duties or leadership responsibilities, the employers may demand a bachelor’s degree in surveying management, civil engineering, or a related field.

An associate’s degree can help you land jobs with more challenging duties and help your overall income to grow. 

3. Get on-the-job training

For applicants at entry-level positions and those who are new to the position or business, many employers offer on-the-job training. 

Depending on your level of expertise and the intricacy of your responsibilities, the time for these training sessions can range anywhere from a few weeks to six months. 

You might receive instruction in the operation of the surveying process, equipment use, the best measuring techniques, and the use of CAD and other surveying technology.

You will also have to work on assignments while undergoing training under the guidance of an experienced survey technician, surveyor, or surveying party head.

You can start with easy activities like putting markers in the proper places and entering data and then take on responsibilities like putting up and operating equipment and figuring out ways to measure land features as you gain more experience.

4. Gain professional certification

Consider obtaining a professional certification for technology surveying from organizations in the sector, such as:

  • The American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ASPRS): This grants photogrammetry professionals certificates at the technician level
  • The Certified Survey Technician credential: This is offered by the National Society of Professional Surveyors in two fields: field and office.

Because they show your talents and competence in the field, many employers seeking experienced candidates may prefer these or other industry credentials. 

Some of these important certificates could make you eligible for leadership positions, other prospects for growth, and higher salaries.

5. Pursue licensing

You should consider finishing formal schooling and meeting the criteria to become a licensed surveyor if you want to further your career in the field of surveying technology.

The regulatory bodies in your state may have specific licensing requirements, but they may include things like obtaining a bachelor’s degree in a field related to surveying or engineering, putting in a predetermined number of hours as an apprentice to a licensed surveyor, and passing the Fundamentals of Surveying and Professional Surveyor exams.

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Soft Skills Needed to Become a Surveying Technician

If you want to be more successful in your position as a survey technician, think about honing and developing the following skills:


Sometimes, surveying technicians could occasionally have restricted access to other team members and would have to work alone.

 Therefore they must be able to use best practices and decide well on their own. 

They must also work together with other survey professionals to decide where to place equipment and how to complete other jobs.

Ability to Pay Attention to detail: 

When collecting measurements and recording data, survey technicians must pay close attention to every detail to produce reliable results. 

Professionals in design and construction are only able to create buildings that are safe and compliant with local, state, and federal building codes when survey technicians give them the most precise data available. 

Ability To Listen Attentively:

 For successful team communication, survey technicians need good speaking and active listening abilities. 

To ensure they correctly carry out all assigned tasks, they must employ active listening to take guidance from survey party leaders and other survey technicians.

Communication Skills

For them to be able to update, inform, or instruct others, survey technicians must also be able to talk clearly, especially when doing so from a distance.

 By using efficient communication techniques, these professionals will deal smoothly with a variety of communication difficulties when out in the field, such as background noise or being separated from coworkers.

Problem-solving Skills

To assess a situation, identify potential solutions, consider the results, and select the best solution, survey technicians must have a variety of skills, including critical thinking and observation abilities. 

Computer Literacy

All survey technicians must be at ease utilizing digital surveying tools and computers.

 They might have to do research, use CAD software, and solve equipment problems.

Ability To Organise and analyze Data 

Complex survey technician tasks may require the creation and management of databases, the analysis of collected data, and the production of reports.

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Important Tools Surveying Technicians Use

Global Positioning Software(GPS)

When finding coordinates, surveyors frequently use GPS equipment. 

This is especially useful for surveys that cover large areas of ground devoid of obvious markers.

A technician who can read GPS coordinates will find it helpful in locating places in relation to the control point by walking specific distances and in specific directions.

Portable Input Terminals

While the surveyor is using other technology systems, a survey technician might input data on a parcel of land.

 Some technicians use software applications on portable input terminals to collect data that will eventually be utilized to create maps. 

As a result, the surveyor can spend less time gathering measurements rather than entering them for subsequent computation processing.

Hand Tools and Cutting Tools

Generally speaking, technicians do more physical jobs than surveyors. They are the ones in the field clearing brush, small trees, and branches that could obstruct the view of optical and laser measurement devices with the needed hand tools and cutting tools. 

A shovel and a sledgehammer are two more basic tools that are regularly used for locating and putting survey pins.

Outdoor and Safety Gear

You will need to take precautions to protect yourself from the climate as well as the elements if you like being outside. 

It will be essential to wear sturdy footwear to assist prevent strains and sprains. It’s crucial to dress adequately for the terrain and climate.

You can avoid sunburn, frostbite, wounds, and scrapes by dressing appropriately. On the majority of job sites and whenever you are working close to traffic, putting on high visibility vests and shirts is necessary. 

When working in construction zones, hard helmets are required. In addition, a reliable set of work gloves can aid in safeguarding your hands while working. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What’s The Average Salary For Surveying Technicians?

The average salary for a survey technician is $23.32 each hour for workers in the United States.

What are the Education Requirements for Surveying Technicians 

Most surveying technicians require a high school certificate, although others have more education in the field.

Who Is A Surveying Technician?

Surveying technicians employ tools like electronic distance measurement apparatus. 
Specialists in surveying and mapping gather information and create maps of the planet’s surface. To measure the land, surveying specialists travel to several locations.

What Skills Do You Need To Be A Surveyor?

A job in surveying will give you highly valuable, future-proofed abilities, such as 3D modeling, data analytics, drone piloting, and interpersonal skills including communication, teamwork, and project management.

What Is The Job Of The Surveyors?

Surveyors offer expert guidance on a variety of construction-related issues.
 They might be in charge of ensuring that newly constructed homes are constructed in accordance with laws and specifications, giving advice on the upkeep and repair of existing buildings, or determining the extent of the damage for legal and insurance purposes.

What Is The Job Description Of A Technician?

Technicians are knowledgeable workers who are found in practically every field. Different systems and pieces of equipment are repaired, installed, replaced, and serviced. 
Technicians usually collaborate with other skilled professionals, so they need to be able to comprehend instructions and speak well

What is a Surveying Technician’s Job Description?

They control surveying tools like electronic distance measuring equipment. Specialists in surveying and mapping gather information and create maps of the planet’s surface.
 To measure the land, surveying specialists travel to several locations. Geographical information is used to make maps by techn

What Skills do Surveying Technicians need?

High levels of competence are required for surveying technicians to plan land and water surveys, make diagrams, charts, and maps, explain charts and maps, write technical or research reports, and survey and measure land.

What Do Mapping Technicians Do?

Cartographers and photogrammetrists are assisted in creating and maintaining maps by mapping technicians.
Utilizing computers, they combine data from several sources to complete their operation. 
Drones are also used by mapping professionals to take pictures and gather other data needed to finish maps or surveys.

How Can I Advance as a Land Survey Technician?

A land survey technician’s position is often entry-level, and advancement may need more education and training. 
Surveyors and managers or supervisory positions are at a higher level.
 Learning computer software applications like Geographic Information Systems is a terrific strategy to stay competitive and expand your prospects for promotion.


This article has extensively discussed the subject “what does a surveying technician do and how to become one”. 

 If you have further questions on how to go about your career as a surveying technician, you can share them with us in the comments section. 

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