Certificate IV in Process Plant Technology

The Certificate IV in Process Plant Technology has been developed as a technical qualification for use in the Chemical, Hydrocarbons and Refining Training Package (PMA08).

Job roles/employment outcomes

The Certificate IV in Process Plant Technology is intended for plant technicians.

The technician will typically be involved in solving complex problems which require theoretical knowledge, combined with an understanding of the production process and equipment across the plant.

This qualification is typically used to develop employees performing a technical role that includes an ability to work independently and conduct technical problem solving according to the needs of the work in the manufactured mineral products industries.

Non-technical team leaders, coordinators and supervisors may be better served by a qualification in competitive manufacturing. The Certificate IV in Competitive Manufacturing MCM40104 is available for team leaders at this level where the job requires sophisticated manufacturing practice skills rather than technical skills.

People with this qualification may be expected to work in one of the following sectors:

fine chemicals

heavy chemicals


polymer manufacture

hydrocarbon extraction

hydrocarbon transmission

hydrocarbon processing/refining

minerals processing/refining

metals smelting/processing

other related areas.

Training programs for this qualification are suitable to be undertaken as part of a formal training contract with an employer under an Australian Traineeship or Apprenticeship arrangement.


To be awarded the Certificate IV in Process Plant Technology competency must be achieved in twenty six (26) units of competency:

five (5) core units of competency

twenty one (21) elective units of competency hosen as specified below.


Where prerequisite units apply, these must be considered in the total number of units chosen.

Core units of competency

Unit code

Unit title

add topic MSAENV272B

Participate in environmentally sustainable work practices

add topic MSAPMOHS110A

Follow emergency response procedures

add topic MSAPMOHS200A

Work safely

add topic MSAPMSUP100A

Apply workplace procedures

add topic MSAPMSUP102A

Communicate in the workplace

Elective units of competency

Select twenty one (21) units as specified below:

A minimum of one (1) from Group A

The remainder may be chosen from Groups A, B and C (with a maximum of eighteen (18) from Group C) to bring the total number of electives to twenty one (21).

Note that up to five (5) units can be chosen from other qualifications in this Training Package, other endorsed Training Packages and accredited courses, as specified in Groups B and C.

Group A Specialist electives

Unit code

Unit title


add topic MSAPMOPS400A

Optimise process/plant area

add topic MSAPMSUP390A

add topic MSAPMOPS401A

Trial new process product

add topic PMAOPS402A

Respond to abnormal process situations

add topic MSAPMSUP390A

add topic PMAOPS405A

Operate complex control systems

add topic PMAOPS410B

Monitor remote production facilities

add topic PMAOPS411B

Manage plant shutdown and restart

add topic PMAOPS433A

Manage wells and gathering systems

add topic PMAOPS434A

Commission wells and gathering systems

add topic MSAPMOPS400A

Optimise process/plant area

add topic MSAPMSUP390A

add topic PMAOPS450B

Solve colour problems

One (1) unit may be chosen from Group A in PMA50110 Diploma of Process Plant Technology

Group B

Unit code

Unit title


add topic MSACMC411A

Lead a competitive manufacturing team

add topic MSACMC413A

Lead team culture improvement

add topic MSACMS401A

Ensure process improvements are sustained

add topic MSACMT430A

Improve cost factors in work practices

add topic MSACMT440A

Lead 5S in a manufacturing environment

add topic MSACMT441A

Facilitate continuous improvement in manufacturing

add topic MSACMT450A

Undertake process capability improvements

add topic MSACMT452A

add topic MSACMT451A

Mistake proof a production process

add topic MSACMT452A

Apply statistics to processes in manufacturing

add topic MSACMT460A

Facilitate the use of planning software systems in manufacturing

add topic MSACMT260A

add topic MSACMT481A

Undertake proactive maintenance analyses

add topic MSACMT482A

Assist in implementing a proactive maintenance strategy

add topic MSAENV472B

Implement and monitor environmentally sustainable work practices

add topic MSAPMOHS400A

Contribute to workplace OHS management system

add topic MSAPMOHS300A

add topic MSAPMOHS401A

Assess risk

add topic MSAPMOPS404A

Co-ordinate maintenance

add topic MSAPMOPS405A

Identify problems in fluid power system

add topic MSAPMOPS406A

Identify problems in electronic control systems

add topic MSAPMPER400A

Coordinate permit process

add topic MSAPMPER300C

add topic MSAPMSUP400A

Develop and monitor quality systems

add topic MSL954001A

Obtain representative samples in accordance with a sampling plan

add topic PMAOHS420B

Develop first aid procedures and manage resources

add topic PMAOMIR407B

Audit incident preparedness and established response system

add topic PMAOMIR418B

Coordinate incident response

add topic PMAOMIR424B

Develop and maintain community relationships

add topic PMAOMIR430B

Conduct and assess incident exercises

add topic PMAOMIR444B

Develop incident containment tactics

add topic PMAOMIR449B

Monitor legal compliance obligations during incidents

add topic PMASUP410B

Develop plant documentation

add topic PMASUP420B

Minimise environmental impact of process

add topic PMASUP432B

Coordinate pipeline projects

add topic PMASUP440B

Commission/recommission plant

add topic PMASUP441C

Decommission plant

add topic PMASUP444A

Plan plant preparation and isolation

add topic PMASUP445A

Participate in HAZOP studies

add topic PMAOPS280A

add topic TAEASS401A

Plan assessment activities and processes

add topic TAEASS402A

Assess competence

add topic TAEASS403A

Participate in assessment validation

Up to one (1) relevant unit may be chosen from this Training Package, other endorsed Training Packages and accredited courses, where that unit is available at Certificate IV or Diploma.

Group C

Unit code

Unit title



Follow work procedures to maintain Good Manufacturing Practice


Implement Good Manufacturing Practice procedures


Monitor the implementation of Good Manufacturing Practice procedures

add topic MEM05012C

Perform routine manual metal arc welding

add topic MEM07033B

Operate and monitor basic boiler

add topic MEM07034A

Operate and monitor intermediate class boiler

add topic MEM07033B

add topic MEM09002B

Interpret technical drawing

add topic MEM09003B

Prepare basic engineering drawing

add topic MEM09002B

add topic MEM11001C

Undertake manual handling

add topic MEM16005A

Operate as a team member to conduct manufacturing, engineering or related activities

add topic MEM18011C

Shutdown and isolate machines/equipment

add topic MSACMS201A

Sustain process improvements

add topic MSACMT230A

Apply cost factors to work practices

add topic MSACMT231A

Interpret product costs in terms of customer requirements

add topic MSACMT240A

Apply 5S procedures in a manufacturing environment

add topic MSACMT250A

Monitor process capability

add topic MSACMT251A

Apply quality standards

add topic MSACMT260A

Use planning software systems in manufacturing

add topic MSACMT270A

Use sustainable energy practices

add topic MSACMT271A

Use sustainable environmental practices

add topic MSACMT280A

Undertake root cause analysis

add topic MSACMT281A

Contribute to the application of a proactive maintenance strategy

add topic MSAPMOHS100A

Follow OHS procedures

add topic MSAPMOHS205A

Control minor incidents

add topic MSAPMOHS210B

Undertake first response to non-fire incidents

add topic MSAPMOHS212A

Undertake first response to fire incidents

add topic MSAPMOHS216A

Operate breathing apparatus

add topic MSAPMOHS217A

Gas test atmospheres

add topic MSAPMOHS220A

Provide initial first aid response

add topic MSAPMOHS300A

Facilitate the implementation of OHS for a work group

add topic MSAPMOPS100A

Use equipment

add topic MSAPMOPS102A

Perform tasks to support production

add topic MSAPMOPS200A

Operate equipment

add topic MSAPMOPS212A

Use enterprise computers or data systems

add topic MSAPMPER200C

Work in accordance with an issued permit

add topic MSAPMPER201A

Monitor and control work permits

add topic MSAPMPER202A

Observe permit work

add topic MSAPMPER205C

Enter confined space

add topic MSAPMPER300C

Issue work permits

add topic RIIRIS201A

add topic MSAPMSUP101A

Clean workplace or equipment

add topic MSAPMSUP106A

Work in a team

add topic MSAPMSUP172A

Identify and minimise environmental hazards

add topic MSAPMSUP200A

Achieve work outcomes

add topic MSAPMSUP201A

Receive or despatch goods

add topic MSAPMSUP204A

Pack products or materials

add topic MSAPMSUP205A

Transfer loads

add topic MSAPMSUP210A

Process and record information

add topic MSAPMSUP240A

Undertake minor maintenance

add topic MSAPMSUP280A

Manage conflict at work

add topic MSAPMSUP291A

Participate in continuous improvement

add topic MSAPMSUP292A

Sample and test materials and product

add topic MSAPMSUP300A

Identify and implement opportunities to maximise production efficiencies

add topic MSAPMSUP200A

add topic MSAPMSUP301A

Apply HACCP to the workplace

add topic MSAPMSUP303A

Identify equipment faults

add topic MSAPMSUP309A

Maintain and organise workplace records

add topic MSAPMSUP310A

Contribute to development of plant documentation

add topic MSAPMSUP330A

Develop and adjust a production schedule

add topic MSAPMSUP382A

Provide coaching/mentoring in the workplace

add topic MSAPMSUP383A

Facilitate a team

add topic MSAPMSUP390A

Use structured problem solving tools

add topic MSL952001A

Collect routine site samples

add topic MSL973001A

Perform basic tests

add topic NWP357B

Monitor, operate and control reverse osmosis and nano-filtration processes

add topic PMAOHS211B

Prepare equipment for emergency response

add topic PMAOHS213B

Undertake fire control and emergency rescue

add topic PMAOHS214B

Undertake helicopter safety and escape

add topic PMAOHS215B

Apply offshore facility abandonment and sea survival procedures

add topic PMAOHS221B

Maintain first aid supplies and records

add topic PMAOHS310B

Investigate incidents

add topic PMAOHS311B

Lead emergency teams

add topic PMAOHS312B

Command the operation of survival craft

add topic PMAOHS320C

Provide advanced first aid response

add topic PMAOHS321B

Provide first aid response in remote and/or isolated area

add topic PMAOMIR210B

Control evacuation to muster point

add topic PMAOMIR301B

Undertake initial rescue

add topic PMAOMIR302B

Respond to a helideck incident

add topic PMAOMIR317B

Facilitate search and rescue operations

add topic PMAOMIR320B

Manage incident response information

add topic PMAOMIR321B

Manage communication systems during an incident

add topic PMAOMIR346B

Assess and secure an incident site

add topic PMAOPS101C

Read dials and indicators

add topic PMAOPS105C

Select and prepare materials

add topic PMAOPS201B

Operate fluid flow equipment

add topic PMAOPS202B

Operate fluid mixing equipment

add topic PMAOPS203B

Handle goods

add topic PMAOPS204B

Use utilities and services

add topic PMAOPS205B

Operate heat exchangers

add topic PMAOPS206B

Operate separation equipment

add topic PMAOPS207B

Operate powered separation equipment

add topic PMAOPS208B

Operate chemical separation equipment

add topic PMAOPS210B

Operate particulates handling equipment

add topic PMAOPS211B

Operate manufacturing extruders

add topic PMAOPS213B

Package product/material

add topic PMAOPS216B

Operate local control system

add topic PMAOPS217B

Operate wet milling equipment

add topic PMAOPS220B

Monitor chemical reactions in the process

add topic PMAOPS221B

Operate and monitor prime movers

add topic PMAOPS222B

Operate and monitor pumping systems and equipment

Co-requisite unit add topic PMAOPS221B

add topic PMAOPS223B

Operate and monitor valve systems

add topic PMAOPS224B

Provide fluids for utilities and support


    Pathways into the qualification

    This qualification may be accessed by direct entry. Credit may be granted towards this qualification by those who have completed PMA30110 Certificate III in Process Plant Operation, MSA30107 Certificate III in Process Manufacturing, MSA30208 Certificate III in Manufacturing Technology or other relevant qualifications. Credit for this qualification may also include units contained within relevant skill sets.

    Pathways from the qualification

    Further training pathways from this qualification include PMA50110 Diploma of Process Plant Technology, MSA51108 Diploma of Competitive Manufacturing, MSA50108 Diploma of Manufacturing Technology or other relevant qualifications, including appropriate vocational graduate qualifications.

    Additional qualification advice

    MSA41108 Certificate IV in Competitive Manufacturing is available for team leaders at this level who already possess technical skills and who require additional manufacturing practice skills above those available in this qualification.

Entry Requirements

Not applicable.

Licensing Information

There are no specific licences that relate to this qualification. However, in some jurisdictions some units of competency in this qualification may have licensing or regulatory requirements. Local regulations should be checked for details.

Employability Skills

Employability Skill

Industry/enterprise requirements for this qualification include:


maintain communication about multiple subjects and with multiple audiences

complete incident and other reports

communicate technical information

update workplace documentation

maintain workplace records


identify and describe own role and role of other

assist others identify role

lead team teams either formally or on an ad hoc basis

resolve conflicts between teams


recognise persistent problems or those not definable by direct observation.

determine problems needing priority action.

investigate and analyse problems and potential solutions.

work with technical experts to define problems and develop possible solutions

apply appropriate theory base for problem

follow through items initiated until final resolution has occurred.

identify and isolate faults in entire plant

use a range of formal problem solving techniques

Initiative and enterprise

proactive in fine tuning of entire plant

seeks out areas requiring improvement

anticipate the impact of the process on customers and value chain members

Planning and organising

prioritise actions to achieve required outcomes for plant

plan work requirements for plant

plan plant maintenance or shutdowns/turnarounds

identify tasks to achieve plant goals.

allocate tasks.

monitor completion of allocated tasks

develop and adjust schedules


plan own work requirements from plant requirements

operate within appropriate time constraints and work standards

select and use appropriate techniques

identify resource requirements, document and monitor

recognise limitations and seek timely advice


maintain and develop own competency

assist others to develop their required competencies

lead improvement procedures/strategies


improvements to and fine tuning of entire process

start up and shut down planning and coordinating a shut down/start up of plant

solving of problems not directly observable

monitor product/process quality

function and operating principles of unit, system or plant area

maintain workplace records