Electricians fit, service and fix electrical equipment, circuits, machinery and wiring.Job Category:
What you will do:
You’ll work in range of areas, from bringing power to people’s homes to big engineering projects. You may also work with renewable technology, like wind turbines, ‘smart’ heating systems and solar power.
Your work will depend on the type of electrician you are:
- installation electrician – installing power systems, lighting, fire protection, security and data-network systems in all types of buildings
- maintenance electrician – checking systems to make sure they’re working efficiently and safely
- electrotechnical panel builder – making and installing control panels to operate the electrical systems inside buildings
- machine repair and rewind electrician – fixing and maintaining electrical motors and transformers
- highway systems electrician – installing and maintaining street lighting and traffic management systems
You may also supervise other people in a team (leadership skills)
- the ability to use, repair and maintain machines and tools
- knowledge of building and construction
- maths knowledge for understanding technical plans
- to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device
As well as:
- problem-solving skills
- the ability to use your initiative (ambition/drive)
- the ability to work well with your hands and use equipment safely
- customer service skills for working with colleagues and clients
- to be thorough, organised and pay attention to detail
To become an Electrician, specific subjects are not mandatory, but having a strong educational foundation in relevant subjects can be helpful. Additionally, pursuing vocational training or apprenticeships is a common pathway to becoming a qualified electrician. Here are some considerations:
- Mathematics (Maths): Basic math skills are crucial for electrical calculations and measurements.
- English: Good communication skills, including reading and writing, are important for understanding electrical plans, documenting work, and communicating with clients or team members.
- Science: While not mandatory, having a basic understanding of science, particularly physics, can be helpful in understanding electrical principles and concepts.
- Design and Technology (D&T): If your school offers D&T courses, they can provide practical skills and insights into electrical systems and technology.
- ICT (Information and Communication Technology): Proficiency in using computers and digital tools can be beneficial for modern electrical work, including reading schematics and using computer-aided design (CAD) software.
Requirements will vary from country to country. In the UK, however, you’ll need a level 3 electrical or electro-technical qualification. You’ll need to complete this qualification while you’re working in a related job.
A common way to get into this job is through an apprenticeship. An apprenticeship will give you a level 3 qualification.
Taking a level 1 or level 2 qualification in electrical installation may help you to find an apprenticeship or get a trainee position.
Working Hours and Environment:
You’ll usually work 30 to 40 hours, Monday to Friday. You may work shifts or be on call.
You may have to travel between jobs and work away from home.
You may have to work around other trades. You may have to work in all weathers, in cramped spaces or at height.
Career Path & Progression:
With experience, you could move into design engineering, site or project management, consultancy work or training.
You could also set up your own business.