Electrician Career

electrician-500Electricians are construction workers who specialize in building and repairing electrical systems for residential homes, commercial buildings, and other facilities. They are distinct from electrical engineers who design electrical systems. Electricians do more of the hands-on work.

Electricians always have a different work setting as they are hired to perform different jobs at different locations. It is great for someone who enjoys a change of setting.

Electricians often work outdoors and within houses or buildings to repair or install electrical systems and wiring. Most electricians work full-time for an electrical company and about 1 in 10 are self-employed. Depending on how busy the company is, electricians may sometimes work weekends and overtime. They may also respond to emergency calls on short notice.

Electrician Career Snapshot

Like all construction jobs, electricians must have physical stamina to perform straining tasks such as lifting heavy objects and climbing ladders. Common injuries include electric shock, falling, and burns.

Further details on a career as an electrician are listed below (statistics from the May 2015 Bureau of Labor Statistics and Onet Online):


is the average pay for electricians per year.


increase in employment between 2014 and 2024.


have a post-secondary certificate while 18% have a high school diploma.

Electrician Education

Electricians must acquire hands-on experience either through an apprenticeship or from a technical school. A typical apprenticeship goes for 4-5 years and a minimum of 2,000 hours of paid work experience as well as 144 hours of in-class education about codes and safety.

Electricians must acquire a license in most states.

Electrician Job Outlook

According to the Bureau of Labor statistics, electricians can expect a 14% growth in jobs between 2014 and 2024. With the advent of newer electrical technology such as solar panels and wind turbines, as well as an aging generation of electricians, job openings are expected to grow. In general, when construction is in high demand, so are electricians.

Electrician Salaries

The median annual income for an electrician in May 2015 according to the BLS.gov was $51,880. The lowest 10% of electricians earn $31,410 a year while the highest 10% earn $88,130 per year.

Electrician Job Duties

The basic duties of an electrician include replacing or repairing wires, fixtures, outlets, and panel, installing new wiring in houses and buildings and understanding electrical blueprints and diagrams. In addition, electricians will ensure that all wiring is constructed according to code and troubleshoot problems accurately.

Electricians must have a good and thorough knowledge of how electrical systems work and must constantly keep up with the changing codes and safety regulations.

Electrician Skills & Abilities

Electrician Skill Set:Required Abilities:Tools Used by Electricians:Typical Work Activities:
• Troubleshooting
• Repairing
• Active listening
• Critical thinking
• Judgment and decision making
• Problem sensitivity
• Deductive reasoning
• Inductive reasoning
• Near vision
• Cable reels
• Stripping tools
• Voltage detectors
• Crimping tool
• Cable/wire cutter
• Getting information
• Identifying objects and actions
• Decision making
• Problem solving

Related Careers

What Do Related Careers Pay?