Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago

Chief Operating Engineer II (#20006860)

General Statement

Under general direction, has charge of and supervises the operation, maintenance, repair and cleaning of all mechanical operating equipment at a very large sewage treatment plant and associated pumping stations.

Essential Job Functions

Essential job functions are fundamental, core functions common to positions in a classification.  They are not intended to be an exhaustive list of all job duties for any one position in the class.  Since class specifications are designed to be descriptive and not restrictive, incumbents may complete one or all of the job duties listed or tasks of similar kind not specifically listed here.
  • Supervises through subordinate supervisors; gives operating personnel instructions and training in job duties and safety practices; checks work and work reports for adherence to orders.
  • Prepares operating work schedules and orders to meet operating requirements at various facilities under his/her supervision; checks and approves time records.
  • Schedules and supervises maintenance work on plant equipment so as to cause the least amount of interference with operating work; inspects and analyzes the operation and operating condition of plant equipment.
  • Oversees and reviews the diagnosis of faulty equipment operation, investigates equipment failures; determines and specifies maintenance and repair requirements.
  • Revises operating procedures as required to ensure safe, efficient and continuous operation.
  • Reviews, coordinates and inspects current construction contracts.
  • Participates in planning initiatives concerning multiple pieces of equipment related to aspects of collection, pumping, treatment or other wastewater or solids processing.
  • Meets with other supervisors to discuss operating and maintenance problems and requirements; cooperates and consults with other personnel in order to coordinate operating activities with those of other departments and trades.
  • Oversees consistent enforcement by subordinates of collective bargaining agreements.
  • Assigns, supervises and reviews work; ensures staff compliance with District policies and procedures including Personnel Rules and Administrative Procedures; completes performance reviews; addresses employee complaints and grievances; may recommend employment actions such as hiring, transfer, suspension, promotion or discharge.

Other Job Functions

  • Participates in special projects involving operational processes, such as those involving future planning of mechanical systems.
  • Diagnoses in depth the electrical and mechanical malfunctions of operating equipment.
  • Inspects various causes of malfunctions in operating equipment; inspects piping, and reviews changes in process flows.
  • Trouble-shoots causes of plant or equipment outages.
  • Requisitions and distributes materials and supplies required to accomplish tasks within the water reclamation plant or pumping station.
  • Performs other duties as assigned.

Environmental Conditions

Work is performed in a typical office environment and requires the use of standard office equipment including computers. Some duties may require field work that involves exposure to a variety of operating mechanical equipment and loud noise and/or noxious odors.  Field work may include working in all types of weather conditions, including extreme heat or cold, throughout the plant facility and collection system and may involve working in close proximity to or in conjunction with construction activities and heavy equipment.

Desirable Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

  • Extensive knowledge of the operating characteristics and maintenance requirements of equipment typical of sewage treatment plants, TARP structures, and associated pumping stations.
  • Thorough knowledge of the occupational hazards and safety precautions of the work.
  • Considerable knowledge of SCADA and DC process control systems.
  • Skill in supervising the maintenance of detailed records and preparing comprehensive operational reports.
  • Ability to plan and supervise the work of subordinates in an effective manner, with special attention to the complexities of everyday, around-the-clock operations in a unionized atmosphere.
  • Ability to supervise, schedule and coordinate work at several locations.
  • Ability to communicate effectively, orally and in writing, including detailed technical writing.

Absolute Requirements

Must possess a City of Chicago Stationary Engineer’s License.

Minimum Qualification Requirements

Graduation from a standard senior high school or the equivalent and ten years of experience in mechanical operating work at a sewage treatment plant or manned sewage pumping facility, including three years of supervisory experience equivalent to the District classification of Assistant Chief Operating Engineer or Chief Operating Engineer I.


Additional experience may substitute for the required education on a year-for-year basis.

Promotional Requirement

  • One year of service with the District as a Chief Operating Engineer I.
  • Civil service status as a Chief Operating Engineer I.

CLASS: 20006860; EST: 1/1/2016;