New York State Department of Civil Service

Division of Classification & Compensation


Occ. Code 7120185


Trades Specialist (Sign Fabrication), Grade 12



Brief Description of Class


            Trades Specialists (Sign Fabrication) perform journey-level sign painting activities and may supervise others in the production and repair of signs of metal, wood, and other materials used for a variety of purposes including regulating, directing and guiding highway traffic and for education and information purposes.



Distinguishing Characteristics


            Trades Specialist (Sign Fabrication): non-competitive; characterized by the full-time responsibility for all stages of the production and repair of signs using a variety of processes, equipment and materials.  Incumbents design lay out and paint letters and designs for signs according to rough sketches, specifications, and oral and written instructions.  Highway signs are constructed according to specifications promulgated by the Federal Government’s Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices. 


            Trades Specialists (Sign Fabrication) may supervise the activities of Maintenance Assistants (Sign Fabrication) and other employees who assist in the production and repair of signs; estimate material needs; and maintain supplies, equipment, and standard work records for the sign shop.



Related Classes


            Maintenance Assistants (Sign Fabrication) perform semiskilled activities in the repair and production of signs of metal, wood, and other materials used for regulating, directing and guiding highway traffic, and for education and information purposes.


            A Trades Supervisor (Sign Fabrication) is a working supervisor of skilled journey-level sign fabricators and semiskilled and unskilled positions in the sign fabrication trade, and occasionally other related trades. Incumbents assign staff to a project, plan and lay out work, provide instruction and assistance, and inspect work.


Illustrative Tasks


Trades Specialists (Sign Fabrication) perform a variety of skilled tasks in the production and repair of signs including:


·         Preparation of sketches of signs indicating the layout and lettering design.


·         If signs are to be silk screened, lays out the design on stencil film, fabricates silk screens, cuts screen stencils by hand and paints signs according to accepted silk screen practice and procedures.


·         Sketches, lays out, and produces reflectorized signs using reflective coated materials.


·         Designs and hand letters posters and cards used in exhibit work with emphasis on artistic layout.


·         Applies gold and silver leaf to signs.


·         Designs and hands letter special signs, particularly those requiring an artistic effect.


·         Estimates material needs for the production and repair of signs and orders and maintains supplies and equipment for the sign shop.


·         Maintains standard records of materials used and work produced.



Independence of Operation


           Trades Specialists (Sign Fabrication) are supervised by Trades Supervisors (Sign Fabrication) or facility administrators. Generally, work priorities are prescribed, material is furnished, the nature and extent of the work to be performed is given, and detailed plans, diagrams, and specifications are provided. In the absence of such direction, the Trades Specialist (Sign Fabrication) sets priorities, requisitions materials, determines the work that has to be done, and lays out the work.


            Although the work of Trades Specialists (Sign Fabrication) is periodically inspected by a supervisor, incumbents are expected to work with considerable independence that is typical of the skilled tradesperson.





            Trades Specialists (Sign Fabrication) have a working relationship with their supervisors and meet with individuals or groups within the program area for whom signs are being prepared.  Incumbents may supervise sign shop employees characterized by frequent oral communications in assigning work and providing instructions and assistance.   Written and oral communications with the general public are not typical of this class.



Supervision Exercised


            A Trades Specialist (Sign Fabrication) may supervise a subordinate maintenance staff and/or individuals for whom the State has custody or responsibility by making assignments, giving instructions, providing materials and technical assistance and observing and inspecting work performed to ensure that instructions have been followed and that the quality of the work is satisfactory.


Minimum Qualifications


Non-competitive: Four years of full-time experience in the design, lettering and making of signs under a skilled tradesperson which would provide training equivalent to that given in a training, apprenticeship, or equivalent program; or an equivalent combination of experience and training gained by completion of technical courses in painting and sign painting at a school, institute, or branch of the Armed Services


When required to operate motor vehicles, candidates must possess a valid New York State driver's license appropriate for the type of vehicle to be operated.



Note:  Classification Standards illustrate the nature, extent and scope of duties and responsibilities of the classes they describe.  Standards cannot and do not include all of the work that might be appropriately performed by a class.  The minimum qualifications above are those which were required for appointment at the time the Classification Standard was written.  Please contact the Division of Staffing Services for current information on minimum qualification requirements for appointment or examination.