An audio technician has three areas of responsibility: to set up and use audio equipment, to maintain audio equipment, and to find new clients. Most are trained professionals responsible for the set up, use, and maintenance of highly specialized audio recording equipment. They typically work as independent contractors, with business relationships with multiple recording studios, performance halls, and other venues.
People who enjoy working with others; are musically inclined; have a good, natural ear; and are naturally outgoing report the greatest satisfaction as an audio technician. These professionals are responsible for ensuring that a sound recording is of the highest quality possible. The ability to interact with others while communicating clearly and effectively is very important.
As a freelance professional, a technician is responsible for finding and winning new jobs or business. Audio recording services are typically arranged through the venue, so these individuals need to make business connections with club and venue managers, as they are responsible for arranging for audio work. Quality of workmanship, pricing, and overall business relationships are critical in the service industry. A lot of work is gained or lost through reputation, so it is important for a technician to dedicate sufficient time to maintain these relationships.
The primary role of the audio technician is to set up and operate sound and recording equipment. The scope of work can vary from a simple microphone and recording equipment to a complex sound stage with multiple instruments. The technician sets up the equipment in advance of the performers’ arrival and must be available for sound checks, adjusting the settings and equipment as required.
Finding new clients is an important part of the job. This can be done through a combination of local, targeted advertising and building important business relationships. For example, someone who works in small venues might build a business relationship with local event planners, corporate event hosting firms, or related businesses. These contacts can provide information regarding new jobs and other potential business opportunities.
The career path is highly dependent on an individual's skill and dedication. People who are willing to travel might secure a position with a large musical act or production, touring the world. Other people specialize in a genre of music, building a reputation within a specific community. Advancement opportunities are rather limited, but many people build a long, rewarding career as an audio technician.