As a locksmith, you will need to help individuals and businesses stay safe and secure valuable items from vandalism, fire, theft or other forms of losses. To become a locksmith, you will need to understand the inner mechanism of locks and safes and employ knowledge to repair, open, design locks and safes of different forms. To operate in Ohio, you will need to obtain a locksmith license from the locksmith licensing board.
Earn a high school diploma. You need basic education that can act as a foundation for succeeding in obtaining the necessary qualification for any locksmith training programs as well as your entry-level employment for any business.
Finish a locksmith training program. Determine the locksmith courses available in vocational schools, trade schools and community colleges. Check the website of Associated Locksmiths of America (ALOA) and identify the schools or colleges that are near your locality in Ohio or opt for a correspondence course. You can also obtain financial aid if you qualify for some grants from ALOA.
Get the necessary experience by working as an apprentice under a professional locksmith. This will facilitate you in applying easily for your training program and also gives you a hold on your job. Cincinnati Locksmith in Cincinnati, Carl Zipf Lock Shop, Inc in Columbus and A-Tri-County Lock in Cleveland are some of the few major locksmith companies in Ohio.
Pass the necessary certification exam. Ohio requires that you pass a certification exam to become a locksmith. Certification can also give you a core competency among your competitors, establish reliability and show your experience in the field as a professional. Check the websites of ALOA and Safe and Vault Technicians Association (SATVA) to know more details regarding the certification grades. If you pass the basic exam, you qualify as a registered locksmith.
Apply for a vendor’s license, since this is a requirement to apply for a locksmith license in Ohio.
Apply and obtain the locksmith license under the locksmith licensing board. You will need to have a clean criminal record to become a locksmith in Ohio. The application requires you to submit two legible sets of fingerprints, which the board verifies through the Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation.
Establish your locksmith business and promote it by placing ads in the yellow pages, phone directories and spreading the word through your current clients.
Based on the specific category you are interested in, you can advance your career by specializing in home security, forensic cases or automotive.