What does a Drafter do?
A drafter takes an engineer’s and architect’s designs and converts them into technical drawings and plans using software programs. Drafters can specialize in civil, mechanical, architectural, or electrical drafting.
The drafter creates schematics to be printed, viewed, or programmed directly into (BIM) Building Information Modeling systems and (PDM) product data management systems. These schematics create digital models of machines or buildings.
How to become a Drafter
A two year associate’s degree or certification from a community college or technical institute is normally required to become employed as a drafter. Technical institutes offer courses in sketching, computer aided design and drafting (CADD) software, and design fundamentals. Some graduates with an associate’s degree go on to a four year college in a related field and pick up courses in mathematics, engineering, and architecture.
Job Description of a Drafter
A drafter uses a software program to take the designs and plans of engineers and architects and converts them into plans and technical drawings. They may add details to the designs and plans with their knowledge of building techniques. He or she has engineers and architects review multiple versions of the designs and work under their supervision.
A drafter must be able to specify materials, dimensions and procedures for new products. The use of CADD systems is an important aid for the Drafter to create and store technical drawings electronically.
A drafter should be skilled in critical thinking, time management, math, technical, detail oriented and have interpersonal skills.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects no overall change in 2012-2022 in this occupation, but electrical and electronics drafters have a projected 10 percent increase in 2012-2022. Mechanical Drafters are projected to have a 5 percent decline.Strong competition should be expected in this career field.