A person who works as an electrician performs repairs and installs electrical wiring and systems. They may work at homes, businesses, factories or construction sites. They need to be knowledgeable of all aspects of electrical engineering and be able to read blueprints and plans. They also need to understand how different components of an electrical system interact with each other, such as voltage and current requirements.
Most electricians receive their training on-the-job through an apprenticeship program lasting four to five years. During this time, they usually attend trade school on a block release schedule one or two days per month. Many states require apprentices to register as an electrical trainee and must earn a certain number of documented work experience hours in order to be eligible to become licensed journeymen.
Aspiring electricians can choose between union and non-union apprenticeship programs. Those who opt for a union apprenticeship must join the local chapter of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers and pay dues. However, this can open up opportunities for employment with higher wages than those paid by non-union employers.
An electrician must be proficient in mathematics, computer go here skills and reading and writing. They must also have good mechanical aptitude, and be able to follow written instructions and diagrams. In addition, they must be able to recognize hazardous situations and comply with all safety protocols. The duties of an electrician vary by specialty and industry, but all jobs involve some combination of troubleshooting, testing, installation, repair and maintenance.
A career as an electrician can be lucrative, especially if it is performed in areas where the demand for services is high. In the United States, there are currently 80,000 openings for electricians each year on average, but this does not account for new jobs created by replacements of those retiring or who have moved into other fields. Some states expect to see a shortage of electricians as the nation shifts away from fossil fuels and toward electricity for vehicles and homes.
Electricians are typically employed by contracting firms, while some are self-employed or work for utilities or power generation companies. As the demand for electric power increases, it will be necessary to replace older equipment and upgrade outdated infrastructure. In addition, as the world transitions to alternative energy sources, there will be a need for electricians who specialize in renewable and green technology.
An electrician can improve their job prospects by maintaining a clean record and attending continuing education classes. They can also network with others in the field and look for opportunities to learn new skills through internships. As with any trade, it is important for aspiring electricians to create a strong resume and cover letter that highlight their training and any other relevant qualifications. They can also hire skilled labor staffing agencies to help them find the right positions. As an added benefit, some electrical workers can work remotely. This is a benefit for those with families or other commitments that prevent them from being able to travel extensively for their jobs.