Is Becoming an Electrician a Good Career Choice?

electrician job skills

Electricians are needed everywhere, and the job outlook for them are expected to better than average in the coming years, but that’s not the only reason becoming an electrician could be a good career choice.

What Electricians Do

Could you imagine living in the dark and not being able to have any modern conveniences our appliances supply for us? People’s lives and jobs are made easier and more comfortable thanks to electric appliances, lights, and other equipment. That’s why electricians are needed on construction sites to install electrical wiring in new homes and businesses. Electricians also maintain and repair electrical systems in older structures.

Electrician Duties:

  • Interpreting blueprints of electrical systems to determine the location of outlets, circuits, and other equipment.
  • Visiting construction sites to install control, wiring, and lighting systems on new buildings.
  • Making service calls to inspect circuit breakers, transformers, and electrical components.
  • Using testing devices to troubleshoot problems in electrical equipment.
  • Working with power and hand tools to replace or repair faulty electrical wiring or parts.
  • Adhering to the National Electrical Code and local and state building rules.
  • Training and managing the work of other employees. 1

Electrician Education

Like many of the skilled trades, an individual does not have to attend a 4-year college or university to become an electrician. However, there are certain requirements to enter the industry which may require some training at a trade school.

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Electrician Qualifications:

  • High School Diploma: A GED is also acceptable.
  • Electrician Training: Often offered at trade schools.
  • Electrician Skills: These include technical, soft, and on-the-job skills.
  • Licenses and Certifications: Requirements vary by state.

Benefits of Being an Electrician

There a several reasons becoming an electrician could be a good career choice.

  • Job Growth: The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 14 percent job growth for electricians through 2024. This is twice the national average of 7 percent. 2
  • Career Advancement: As an electrician gains more experience and training, he or she can advance from the position of Journeyman to Master. Master electricians typically have can perform higher level tasks which can translate into higher rates of pay. For example, they can order permits while Journeymen cannot. 3
  • Self-Employment: Working for oneself is an option as an electrician. One in 10 electricians were self-employed in 2014. These professionals can often set their own schedules.
  • Union Membership: Many electricians are members of a union. 4 Union members often have access to more benefits than their nonunion counterparts such as healthcare. They may also enjoy greater job security. 5
  • Variety: Unlike office workers who typically sit at the same desk everyday, electricians have active jobs that send them to different work sites to take on new projects rather than a routine environment. 6

Wiring the World

Electricians enjoy excellent job prospects. There are also many advantages to this career. In addition to these benefits, electricians can take satisfaction in playing an important role in their communities. Without their wiring work, the world might not be as comfortable of a place.

Sources:

1 – https://www.bls.gov/ooh/construction-and-extraction/electricians.htm#tab-2
2 – https://www.bls.gov/ooh/construction-and-extraction/electricians.htm#tab-1
3 – http://work.chron.com/differences-between-journeyman-master-electrician-2158.html
4 – https://www.bls.gov/ooh/construction-and-extraction/electricians.htm#tab-5
5 – http://www.bankrate.com/finance/personal-finance/pros-cons-union-jobs-1.aspx
6 – http://money.usnews.com/careers/best-jobs/electrician/reviews