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Locksmiths install, adjust and repair locks, make keys and change lock combinations on residential, automotive, commercial and institutional locksets and door hardware. They also may install and maintain more sophisticated security systems. 

  • Avg. Salary $60,587.00
  • Avg. Wage $29.26
  • Minimum Education Apprenticeship
  • Outlook below avg
  • Employed 1,600
  • In Demand Medium
Also Known As

Customer Service Representative, Key Duplicator, Safe and Vault Technician, Vault Technician

NOC Codes

In Canada, the federal government groups and organizes occupations based on a National Occupational Classification (NOC) system. This alis occupation may not reflect the entire NOC group it is part of. Data for the NOC group can apply across multiple occupations.

The NOC system is updated every 5 years to reflect changes in the labour market. Government forms and labour market data may group and refer to an occupation differently, depending on the system used. Here is how this occupation has been classified over time:

  • 2006 NOC: Locksmiths (7383.2) 
  • 2006 NOC-S: Other Trades and Related Occupations (H523) 
  • 2011 NOC: Other trades and related occupations, n.e.c. (7384) 
  • 2016 NOC: Other trades and related occupations, n.e.c. (7384) 
Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

Average Wage
  • Certification Provincially Regulated
  • Strength Required Lift over 20 kg
Interest Codes
The Locksmith is part of the following larger National Occupational Classification (NOC).

Interest in precision working to manipulate lockpicks in cylinders to open jammed locks and locks without keys, and to fabricate parts


Interest in replacing worn and damaged parts by chiselling, filing, scraping and other tooling to correct dimensions


Interest in analyzing information to disassemble locks such as padlocks and door locks to locate defects

Reading Interest Codes
A Quick Guide

The interest code helps you figure out if you’d like to work in a particular occupation. 
It’s based on the Canadian Work Preference Inventory (CWPI), which measures 5 occupational interests: Directive, Innovative, Methodical, Objective and Social.

Each set of 3 interest codes is listed in order of importance.

A code in capital letters means it’s a strong fit for the occupation.

A code in all lowercase letters means the fit is weaker.

Learn More

Updated Dec 15, 2016

In general, locksmiths:

  • sell and install high security lock systems and key control systems, window bars, deadlocks and keyless entry locks
  • repair, replace or adjust damaged or defective components of an entrance or exit door (for example, door closers, hinges, electric release mechanisms and sometimes the door itself)
  • service, code, recode, rekey or re-pin any locking devices
  • design or maintain master key systems
  • help clients re-gain access to secured areas by means of bypassing locking devices.

Specific duties vary depending on the area in which locksmiths work:

Shop locksmiths:

  • service and adjust key machines
  • repair locks
  • re-key locks
  • make keys for locks
  • open cylinders when keys are not available
  • prepare master keys from code
  • repair or make keys for auto locks brought into the shop.

Mobile locksmiths work from mobile units. In addition to the duties of shop locksmiths, they also:

  • repair locks in the field
  • open door locks with a lock pick
  • open and make keys for automobiles
  • install locks, door closers and emergency exit hardware
  • replace hinges and re-align doors
  • install security bars
  • install and repair electric strikes and electronic security hardware
  • service and change combinations on safe and vault doors.

Safe and vault technicians have additional training in safe and vault servicing and trouble shooting. They open, rebuild, paint, move and install safes.

Locksmiths who service bank equipment work with mechanical and electronic time locks, time delay devices, night deposit units and combination, electronic and key locks for vaults and safes.

Working Conditions
Updated Dec 15, 2016

Locksmiths usually work a five day week but may be on call nights and weekends to respond to emergencies. Self-employed locksmiths may work longer hours.

Some shops, especially mobile units, may be small and crowded, requiring locksmiths to work around benches, counters and stock. They sometimes are required to work in awkward or confined spaces, climb ladders, or move safes that weigh over 25 kilograms. Those working in mobile units may be required to work in adverse weather conditions.

  • Strength Required Lift over 20 kg
Skills & Abilities
Updated Dec 15, 2016

Locksmiths need the following characteristics:

  • mechanical ability
  • good mathematical ability
  • an understanding of computers
  • patience and stamina
  • tact when dealing with the public
  • good vision and hearing
  • good hand-eye co-ordination to work with small and intricate parts
  • reliable, accurate and honest
  • able to work independently 
  • interested in keeping up to date with new developments in security. 

They should enjoy doing precision work, solving problems and helping people.

Educational Requirements
Updated Dec 15, 2016

To work in Alberta, a locksmith must be licensed by Alberta Justice and Solicitor General under the Alberta Security Service and Investigators Act (SSIA) and must be ONE of the following:

  • a registered apprentice
  • an Alberta-certified journeyperson
  • someone who holds a recognized trade certificate.

To register with Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training, apprentices must:

  • have an Alberta high school transcript with at least English Language Arts 10-2 and Math 10-3, or equivalent, or a pass mark in all 5 GED tests, or pass an entrance exam.
  • find a suitable employer who is willing to hire and train an apprentice. Most employers prefer to hire high school graduates. Knowledge of computers, electronics, welding, carpentry and metal work is an asset.

During the apprenticeship program, apprentices must hold a valid Locksmith Apprentices Training Licence issued by Alberta Justice and Solicitor General.

The term of apprenticeship is 3 years (3 12-month periods) that include a minimum of 1,560 hours of on-the-job training and 8 weeks of technical training each year. High school students can earn credits toward apprenticeship training and a high school diploma at the same time through the Registered Apprenticeship Program (RAP).

Applicants who have related training or work experience may be eligible for credit or certification.

Technical training is arranged by Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training and is currently offered at Red Deer College and by distance delivery.

For more information, visit the Technical Training Centre on the Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training website.

Related Education

The following schools offer programs or courses that are related to this occupation but are not required to enter the field.

Apprenticeship Trades

Red Deer College

For a broad list of programs and courses that may be related to this occupation try searching using keywords.

Certification Requirements
Updated Dec 15, 2016


Locksmiths install, adjust and repair locks, make keys and change lock combinations on residential, automotive, commercial and institutional locksets and door hardware. They also may install and maintain more sophisticated security systems. For more information, see the Trades and Occupations section of Alberta's Tradesecrets website.


Under Alberta's Security Services and Investigators Act and Security Services and Investigators (Ministerial) Regulation, you must be licensed by Alberta Justice and Solicitor General to possess locksmith tools or be paid to work on locking devices or master key systems, maintain key code records, or cut, make or sell keys or other lock-operating devices for which duplication is restricted. Under the Apprenticeship and Industry Training Act and Locksmith Trade Regulation, locksmith apprentices must be registered with Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training to learn the trade.

What You Need

Applicants for a locksmith licence must have a trade certificate or approved equivalent. The term of apprenticeship for apprentice locksmiths in Alberta is four years (four 12 month periods) that include a minimum of 1,560 hours of on-the-job training and eight weeks of technical training in each year. Apprentices must find suitable employers who are willing to hire and train apprentices, and successfully complete technical training examinations.

Working in Alberta

Locksmiths trained in other provinces and territories can work in Alberta if they are licensed and hold a certificate recognized by the Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training Board or have the skills and knowledge expected of a journeyperson certified in Alberta. For more information, see the Recognized Trade Certificates page of the Tradesecrets website.

Contact Details

Security Programs
Alberta Justice and Solicitor General
Edmonton, Alberta  
Toll-free within Alberta: 1-877-462-0791

Apprenticeship and Industry Training Client Service Offices
Tradesecrets website: (click on "Contact Us")

Employment & Advancement
Updated Dec 15, 2016

Locksmiths are employed by locksmithing companies, related security firms and institutions.

Experienced locksmiths can advance to supervisory positions or set up their own businesses. Most locksmiths consider this a life-long occupation. Alberta certified journeyperson locksmiths who have the supervisory or management skills required by industry may apply for an Achievement in Business Competencies Blue Seal by contacting Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training.

Locksmiths are part of the larger 2011 National Occupational Classification 7384: Other trades and related occupations. In Alberta, 79% of people employed in this classification work in the following industries:

The employment outlook in this occupation will be influenced by a wide variety of factors including:

  • trends and events affecting overall employment (especially in the industries listed above)
  • location in Alberta
  • employment turnover (work opportunities generated by people leaving existing positions)
  • occupational growth (work opportunities resulting from the creation of new positions that never existed before)
  • size of the occupation.

Over 1,200 Albertans are employed in the Other trades and related occupations occupational group. This group is not expected to grow from 2016 to 2020.

Employment turnover is expected to increase as members of the baby boom generation retire over the next few years.

Increasing public awareness of theft is creating a need for more security measures so demand for locksmiths is expected to remain fairly stable.

Wage & Salary
Updated Dec 15, 2016

Journeyperson wage rates vary but generally range from $25 to $40 an hour plus benefits (2016 estimates). Apprentice locksmiths earn 60% of the journeyperson wage rate in their place of employment in the first year, 70% in the second, 80% in the third.

Other trades and related occupations, n.e.c.

Survey Methodology

Survey Analysis

Overall Wage Details
Average Wage
Average Salary
Hours Per Week

Hourly Wage
For full-time and part-time employees
  • Low
  • High
  • Average
  • Median
Wages* Low (5th percentile) High (95th percentile) Average Median
Starting $16.00 $43.14 $22.66 $18.45
Overall $21.00 $43.14 $29.26 $28.43
Top $25.00 $50.00 $34.70 $34.00

Swipe left and right to view all data. Scroll left and right to view all data.

* All wage estimates are hourly except where otherwise indicated. Wages and salaries do not include overtime hours, tips, benefits, profit shares, bonuses (unrelated to production) and other forms of compensation.

A: High Reliability
Data Reliability Code Definition

High Reliability, represents a CV of less than or equal to 6.00% and 30 survey observations and/or represents 50% or more of all estimated employment for the occupation.

Industry Information
Public Administration
Retail Trade

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years


Recruiting Employers that Experienced Hiring Difficulties


Employers with Unfilled Vacancies of over 4 Months


Vacancy Rate

Related Post-Secondary Field of Study
  • Trades, Industrial and Related Training
Other Sources of Information
Updated Dec 15, 2016

Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training website:

Alberta Justice and Solicitor General website:

BuildForce Canada website:

Professional Locksmiths Association of Alberta website:

Get information and referrals about career, education, and employment options from Alberta Supports.

Updated Mar 31, 2015. The information contained in this profile is current as of the dates shown. Salary, employment outlook, and educational program information may change without notice. It is advised that you confirm this information before making any career decisions.

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