Security systems and locks on institutional, residential and commercial buildings are installed, repaired and serviced by locksmiths using specialized tools. Typically, a certificate or apprenticeship program is required to be completed by locksmiths before they are employed by businesses. While they are required to complete licensure norms in twelve states, these professionals can also seek voluntary certification.
Training Recommendations and Requirements
Two standard training programs are offered to locksmiths, admission requirements for both require locksmiths to hold a high school diploma or general educational development (GED). Admission is sought by some locksmiths in locksmith certificate programs where coursework is delivered as a combination of hands on experience and classroom instruction. Locksmith schools are few in number; however, another popular training path is available to locksmiths in the form of a locksmithing apprenticeship. In an apprenticeship program, locksmiths entering the profession learn about the field by performing work supervised by an experienced locksmith. Locksmiths are required to have excellent coordination and dexterity. As they are required to work with other service professionals in addition to customers; locksmiths need strong customer service and communication skills. These professionals are required to hold a valid driver license and be able to travel to nearby destinations as the job calls for the provision of on-site services.
Locksmith apprenticeships and locksmith certificate programs are popular with beginning locksmiths wanting to gain knowledge about the profession. These professionals can seek practical hands on experience with security systems and locks by enrolling in these two programs. Generally, most locksmiths choose to participate in apprenticeships that combine classroom instruction with field experience. These professional can also avail a list of locksmithing schools compiled by Associated Locksmiths of America (ALOA).
Locksmiths learn about mechanical locks and lockset servicing in locksmithing certificate programs. Coursework also covers Detention locking systems, Types of locks, Key duplication and impressioning, Commercial and institutional locksmithing, Residential locksmithing and Automotive locksmithing.
The job usually requires prospective candidates to have one to five years of locksmithing experience. Locksmiths can gain a professional experience via professional apprenticeship or locksmithing educational program. On-the-job training may be provided by some employers; locksmiths can gain admission to the programs without prior professional experience.
Certifications and Licenses
Fewer than twenty states require locksmiths to obtain licensure. Locksmiths can pass a comprehensive exam in locksmithing in order to demonstrate proficiency in locksmithing as required in those states. Locksmiths seeking to work in other states could choose voluntary certification from ALOA. An ALOA Certification is accepted by many employers and customers as proof of a locksmith’s proficiency in every area of locksmithing including institutional, commercial and residential locksmithing. Once they have passed the appropriate examination, a locksmith can choose to work as a Certified master locksmith (CML), Certified professional locksmith (CPL), Certified registered locksmith (CRL), Certified automotive locksmith (CAL) or Registered locksmith (RL).
Seminars and Workshops
Vocational and technical schools offer locksmithing programs through workshops that are typically sponsored alongside a certificate or apprenticeship course. Employers may also organize workshops to train newly employed locksmiths. Additionally, five online locksmith training workshops are offered by ALOA covering advanced security and locksmithing concepts.
ALOA provides additional professional development resources that locksmiths can use to their advantage. These professionals can seek instruction about evolving trends in the field by enrolling in a continuing education program for locksmiths offered by ALOA. Locksmiths can also learn more about the field by leveraging a membership program and an online store provided by the organization. ALOA also holds an annual conference attended by trade show representatives and guest speakers.