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Become a Transportation QA Specialist: Career Info

Read on to learn what a transportation QA specialist does. See what kind of education and training is required, and get career prospects and earning potential to see if this job is right for you.

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Career Definition for a Transportation QA Specialist

Transportation QA specialists are responsible for ensuring the compliance of transportation-related activities for businesses and companies. Specialists implement and identify the security requirements for transportation established by the IATA (International Air Transportation Association), DOT (Department of Transportation), TSA (Transportation Security Administration), IMDG (International Maritime Dangerous Goods), and other regulatory agencies.

Required Education A bachelor's degree as a minimum
Job Duties Include implementing and identifying the security requirements for transportation established by different regulatory agencies
Median Salary (2016)* $50,219 (all general quality assurance specialists)
Job Outlook (2014-2024)** 3% growth (all compliance officers)

Source: *Salary.com and **U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Education Required

A potential transportation QA specialist needs to graduate from an accredited college or university with a bachelor's degree. While in school, students should take courses in engineering, industrial management, statistics, traffic management, transportation, and motor mechanics.

Skills Required

Most employers prefer that applicants have international transportation experience, which includes having skills in sourcing, execution, shipping, and administration. Transportation QA specialists also need to have good analytical and computer skills. It's essential for specialists to understand traffic laws for all forms of transportation, which include the road, air, water, and rails.

Economic and Career Outlook

Although data on the salaries of transportation QA specialists is not available, Salary.com reported the median base salary of a general quality assurance specialist to be $50,219 as of May 2016. Compliance officers' job description is not unlike the work of transportation QA specialists. Their work involves activities related to license and permit compliance. The BLS reported that job opportunities for compliance officers were due to increase by 3% between 2014 and 2024.

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Alternate Career Options

Here are some examples of alternative career options:

Building Inspector

Building inspectors examine structures - from blueprint phase to completion - to ensure that buildings are structurally sound, safe to occupy, and meet local zoning laws and building codes. If necessary, they are authorized to stop construction or issue violations. Building inspectors usually have at least a high school diploma, although a bachelor's degree is more commonly becoming the minimum education requirement. Building inspectors also have extensive experience in the construction industry. On-the-job training is common. Certification and licensing requirements often apply to building inspectors; requirements can vary by state or locality. A driver's license is also required. The BLS estimates that jobs for construction and building inspectors will increase 8% from 2014-2024, and that these workers earned median pay of $57,340 in 2015.

Fire Inspector

A fire inspector makes on-site visits to ensure that structures meet fire codes. They review blueprints prior to construction, evaluate fire evacuation plans, and inspect buildings after completion; they also test fire detection and suppression systems, and identify code violations and other hazardous conditions. Fire inspectors typically have at least a high school diploma, extensive relevant experience, and specialized classroom and field training. State and professional certifications may apply; qualifications vary. The BLS reports that jobs for fire inspectors are expected to grow 6% from 2014-2024, and that the median pay of fire inspectors and investigators was $56,730 in 2015.

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