Plant Operator

Job ID
Employment Type
Regular Full-Time
Plant Operations
Rotating Day/Night
Travel Required
FLSA Status
Position Location(s)



At POET, it is our mission to be good stewards of the Earth by converting renewable resources to energy and other valuable goods as effectively as humanly possible. For over thirty years our drive and passion to change the world has enabled us to become the largest producer and marketer of bioethanol and leader in bio-based products in the world. Beyond our world-class culture, POET team members enjoy competitive pay and benefits including;

  • Attractive Relocation Assistance and Bonus Programs for qualifying positions and/or locations
  • Competitive pay, including shift premium pay for qualifying positions
  • Quarterly Profit-Sharing Bonuses, and Bi-Annual Incentive Bonuses
  • Individual and family plans for health, dental, & vision insurance, including a generous employer Health Savings Account contribution
  • Paid Parental Leave
  • A multifaceted wellness program encompassing the whole person – mentally, physically, and spiritually
  • Onsite fitness centers or fitness reimbursements
  • 401K with company match
  • Paid time off and paid holidays
  • Tuition reimbursement
  • Excellent work-life balance with a 'family-first' culture
  • Safety and cold weather gear reimbursements
  • Discounted home and auto insurance



The Plant Technician is responsible for the operation of all plant processing equipment and performing routine basic maintenance in a highly automated chemical facility. In the area of maintenance, Plant Technicians are responsible for the safe and efficient maintenance, basic repair, and cleaning of all equipment associated with bioprocessing processes. At times, Plant Technicians may be asked to assist Maintenance Technicians in more technical and complex maintenance procedures. Team members in this position are required to maintain knowledge of the process flow, computerized equipment, and be aware of hazards associated with the process as well as understand and execute standard operating procedures (SOPs). Continuous plant operation requires 12-hour shift work. Plant Technicians must be able to adapt to 12-hour workdays and be able to meet call-in requirements as needed.



  • Use your knowledge to maintain and operate all processes associated with the plant where required.
  • Perform maintenance and basic repairs of plant equipment and document these activities.
  • Operate the DCS (Distributed Control System) for the plant.
  • Safely perform basic electrical troubleshooting.
  • Follow procedures for plant start-up, shut-down, cleaning, and batching.
  • Maintain accurate and timely logs.
  • Collect and test quality control samples, interpret QA/QC results and make adjustments to optimize plant operations, timely and accurately document results and enter results into our data collection system, PI.
  • Assist in removal, installation, rebuild, and performance of preventive and predictive maintenance on all equipment associated with plant processes.
  • Help to keep your plant clean by following the sanitation schedule and completing all tasks as assigned.
  • Notify the management team of safety, environmental, quality and production concerns, problems and opportunities.
  • Keep your plant safe by fostering a culture of safe behavior and environmental compliance.
  • Maintain a team environment at all times and champion POET in the community.
  • Since we’re all about teamwork and getting the job done, your skill may be put to a lot of other uses!



  • High school diploma or equivalent required.
  • Experience requirements:
    • Plant Technician I: experience in a production environment preferred.
    • Plant Technician II: Documented successful performance as a Plant Technician I or equivalent work experience required.
    • Plant Technician III: Documented proficiency in the skills listed in the Plant Technician III Skills Checklist.
  • Working knowledge in math, reading comprehension and mechanical reasoning required.
  • Strong troubleshooting and problem solving skills are required.
  • Experience with software systems, such as Maximo, preferred.
  • Excellent organizational, time management, and communication skills as well as the ability to embrace change.
  • You know the basics of Microsoft Office Suite. You’re capable of learning new programs.


At POET we believe in developing our team members to their highest potential and recognizing contributions that add value to the organization. Each new team member’s position and compensation are carefully determined by considering their unique qualifications and skillset.



  • Culture is king at POET. We’re all on the same team. We always communicate. And we park our egos at the door. These aren’t just slogans on our walls. It’s the way we do things at POET.
  • Team members will be required to adhere to all safety requirements at all times and in all work environments. This position is exposed to work in multiple environments, including plant, laboratory, as well as an office environment. You may be exposed to high noise levels, moving mechanical parts, dusty conditions, internal and external temperature/weather conditions, and chemicals.
  • Due to the physical and safety sensitive nature of this job, you will be subject to a physical and expected to pass a drug screen during the pre-screen process. During employment, you’ll be subject to random drug and alcohol testing.
  • This role has some physical requirements that our team members will need to be able to perform, such as:
    • Wearing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) such as hard hats, gloves, safety glasses, steel-toed boots, hazardous material suit, hearing protection, and harness.
    • Working at extreme heights (approximately 150 ft), in confined spaces, and in extreme temperatures from -20 to +100 degrees Fahrenheit, both indoors and outdoors. Due to the nature of the work, the areas can be dusty at times.
    • Must be able to use the following equipment/tools, with training provided (not all encompassing): forklift, power washer, pallet jack, hoist systems, scissor lifts, JLG lifts, telehandlers, Front End Loaders, various hand tools, and computers.
    • Frequently:
      • Sitting in a chair in the Control Room while operating the plant
      • Walk indoors and outdoors sometimes over rough, uneven, or wet/slick surfaces
      • Carry to up to 15lbs
      • Climb stairs and/or ladders
      • Stand indoors to clean and maintain areas
      • Reach at arm’s length to gather samples
      • Be in awkward back, shoulder, wrists, and hand positions
      • Use coordination and grip, with a force of up to 50lbs
      • Bend while standing
      • Use repetitive arm motions to wipe down and maintain work area
      • Climb in and out of Powered Industrial Vehicles
    • Occasionally:
      • Lift up to 50lbs, with or without assistance
      • Carry up to 40 lbs, with without assistance
      • Push with a force of 10lbs, with or without assistance
      • Pull with a force of up to 85lbs, with or without assistance
      • Bend, twist, turn, kneel, and crouch, while holding light and medium weighted objects
      • Since we are all about team work, you may be asked to help other roles that have their own unique set of physical requirements.


POET is an Equal Opportunity Employer (EOE). POET complies with all applicable federal, state and local laws regarding hiring and employment. Qualified applicants are considered for employment without regard to age, race, color, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability or veteran status.


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