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Air Traffic Controller Job Description: Top Duties and Qualifications

Last updated: September 27, 2023

Including a good job description within your job posting is a great way to gain the attention of job seekers. Hundreds of job seekers are browsing Indeed every day, any by using this template, you can create a job description to help find the right air traffic controller for your company.

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Air Traffic Controller Duties and Responsibilities

The main responsibility an Air Traffic Controllers has is to ensure safety of aircrafts during landing and takeoff and while in the air. They do this by directing the pilots’ movements and monitoring where other aircrafts are at all times in order to avoid any collisions or accidents. Other duties an air traffic controller may have are as follows:

  • Inform pilots of any runway closures, bad weather or other critical information
  • Direct a pilot through the entire landing and takeoff process
  • Alert the airport response team whenever there is an aircraft emergency
  • Give departing flight control to other traffic control centers, and receive control of any arriving flights
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Air Traffic Controller Job Description Examples

What Does an Air Traffic Controller Do?

Air Traffic Controllers coordinate aircraft movements in order to keep safe distance between multiple aircrafts. They direct aircraft traffic efficiently to avoid delays as safely as possible. By using computers, radar and visual references, an Air Traffic Controllers monitors aircraft movements in the skies and directs pilots while they are on the ground to manage the flow of ground traffic.

Air Traffic Controller Skills and Qualifications

The right Air Traffic Controllers candidate for your company should possess a variety of skills to execute their job correctly. Skills such as the ability to communicate efficiently and effectively are important because an Air Traffic Controllers has to communicate all steps of landing and departure with the pilot, among other things. Other important skills an Air Traffic Controllers should have are:

  • Decision making skills when faced with a situation where a decision must be made immediately to ensure the safety of aircrafts and anyone involved
  • Math skills in order to compute the speed, distance and time of various aircrafts and when they should arrive at their destinations
  • Concentration skills will help keep air traffic controllers stay focused on the task at hand when in a loud room full of other controllers
  • Organizational skills to be able to organize flights as they come in and leave and ensure everything happens in a clean, safe manner free of accidents

Air Traffic Controller Salary Expectations

Based on Indeed, the average salary for an Air Traffic Controllers is $47,806 a year with a typical tenure of 4-6 years. This information is based on anonymous information submitted by 310 employees and users as well as a combination of past and present job advertisements.

Air Traffic Controller Education and Training Requirements

The typical educational requirement for Air Traffic Controllers candidates is to have an associate or bachelor’s degree from an Air Traffic Collegiate Training Initiative (AT-CTI) program. The courses in these programs train the candidates in aviation weather, clearances, airspace, federal regulations, chart reading and other related topics. Candidates must complete a biographical assessment to evaluate their personality fitness. Furthermore, they must also pass a physical exam every year, a job performance exam twice a year and periodic drug testing.

Air Traffic Controller Experience Requirements

Many employers prefer air traffic controllers to have at least three years of progressively responsible work experience and/or have completed four years of college. Air Traffic Controllers must have passed the FAA Academy before age 31 to forgo training and become a developmental controller upon graduating. As a developmental controller, the candidate will have to go through a series of training to fulfill numerous requirements. Once all requirements have been completed while in the developmental controller position, the candidate can become a fully fledged air traffic controller.

Job Description Samples for Similar Positions

If an air traffic controller isn’t exactly what you are looking for, here are some job description samples for similar positions that you may need:

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Job Description Examples

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