a dark blue TraitLab logo
Sign up

Have an account? Sign in

Career profile Electrician

Also known as Chief Electrician; Control Electrician; Electrician; Industrial Electrician; Inside Wireman; Journeyman Electrician; Journeyman Wireman; Maintenance Electrician; Mechanical Trades Specialist, Electrician; Qualified Craft Worker, Electrician (QCW, Electrician)

Electrician

Also known as Chief Electrician; Control Electrician; Electrician; Industrial Electrician; Inside Wireman; Journeyman Electrician; Journeyman Wireman; Maintenance Electrician; Mechanical Trades Specialist, Electrician; Qualified Craft Worker, Electrician (QCW

Interests Profile
  • Realistic
  • Investigative
  • Conventional
Pay Range
$33,810 - $98,720 (annual)
Required Skills
  • Troubleshooting
  • Repairing
  • Active Listening
Knowledge Areas
  • Building and Construction
  • Mechanical
  • Mathematics
Core tasks
  • Plan layout and installation of electrical wiring, equipment, or fixtures, based on job specifications and local codes.
  • Connect wires to circuit breakers, transformers, or other components.
  • Test electrical systems or continuity of circuits in electrical wiring, equipment, or fixtures, using testing devices, such as ohmmeters, voltmeters, or oscilloscopes, to ensure compatibility and safety of system.
Is Electrician the right career path for you?

Would Electrician be a good fit for you?

Explore how your personality fits with Electrician and hundreds of other career paths.

Create your free account

What does an Electrician do?

Electricians install, maintain, and repair electrical wiring, equipment, and fixtures.

In addition, Electricians

  • ensure that work is in accordance with relevant codes,
  • may install or service street lights, intercom systems, or electrical control systems.

What kind of tasks does an Electrician perform regularly?

Electricians are often responsible for overseeing or executing some or all of the following tasks:

  • Plan layout and installation of electrical wiring, equipment, or fixtures, based on job specifications and local codes.
  • Connect wires to circuit breakers, transformers, or other components.
  • Test electrical systems or continuity of circuits in electrical wiring, equipment, or fixtures, using testing devices, such as ohmmeters, voltmeters, or oscilloscopes, to ensure compatibility and safety of system.
  • Inspect electrical systems, equipment, or components to identify hazards, defects, or the need for adjustment or repair, and to ensure compliance with codes.
  • Use a variety of tools or equipment, such as power construction equipment, measuring devices, power tools, and testing equipment, such as oscilloscopes, ammeters, or test lamps.
  • Prepare sketches or follow blueprints to determine the location of wiring or equipment and to ensure conformance to building and safety codes.
  • Diagnose malfunctioning systems, apparatus, or components, using test equipment and hand tools to locate the cause of a breakdown and correct the problem.
  • Work from ladders, scaffolds, or roofs to install, maintain, or repair electrical wiring, equipment, or fixtures.
  • Place conduit, pipes, or tubing, inside designated partitions, walls, or other concealed areas, and pull insulated wires or cables through the conduit to complete circuits between boxes.
  • Advise management on whether continued operation of equipment could be hazardous.
  • Maintain current electrician's license or identification card to meet governmental regulations.
  • Direct or train workers to install, maintain, or repair electrical wiring, equipment, or fixtures.
  • Repair or replace wiring, equipment, or fixtures, using hand tools or power tools.
  • Install ground leads and connect power cables to equipment, such as motors.
  • Assemble, install, test, or maintain electrical or electronic wiring, equipment, appliances, apparatus, or fixtures, using hand tools or power tools.
  • Perform business management duties, such as maintaining records or files, preparing reports, or ordering supplies or equipment.
  • Fasten small metal or plastic boxes to walls to house electrical switches or outlets.
  • Construct or fabricate parts, using hand tools, according to specifications.
  • Perform physically demanding tasks, such as digging trenches to lay conduit or moving or lifting heavy objects.

The above responsibilities are specific to Electricians. More generally, Electricians are involved in several broader types of activities:

Getting Information
Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events
Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
Making Decisions and Solving Problems
Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Materials
Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
Handling and Moving Objects
Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.

What is an Electrician salary?

The median salary for an Electrician is $56,900, and the average salary is $61,550. Both the median and average roughly describe the middle of the Electrician salary range, but the average is more easily affected by extremely high or low salaries.

Many Electricians earn significantly more or less than the average, due to several factors. About 10% of Electricians earn less than $33,810 per year, 25% earn less than $42,790, 75% earn less than $75,380, and 90% earn less than $98,720.

Between the years of 2020 and 2030, the number of Electricians is expected to change by 9.1%, and there should be roughly 84,700 open positions for Electricians every year.

Median annual salary
$56,900
Typical salary range
$33,810 - $98,720
Projected growth (2020 - 2030)
9.1%

What personality traits are common among Electricians?

Interests

Career interests describe a person's preferences for different types of working environments and activities. When a person's interest match the demands of an occupation, people are usually more engaged and satisfied in that role.

Compared to most occupations, those who work as an Electrician are usually higher in their Realistic interests.

Electricians typically have very strong Realistic interests. Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.

Values

People differ in their values, or what is most important to them for building job satisfaction and fulfillment.

Compared to most people, those working as an Electrician tend to value Independence, Support, and Achievement.

Most importantly, Electricians strongly value Independence. Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions.

Second, Electricians strongly value Support. Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees.

Lastly, Electricians moderately value Achievement. Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment.

Psychological Demands

Each occupation brings its own set of psychological demands, which describe the characteristics necessary to perform the job well.

In order to perform their job successfully, people who work as Electricians must consistently demonstrate qualities such as dependability, attention to detail, and integrity.

Below, you'll find a list of qualities typically required of Electricians, ranked by importance:

Dependability
Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Attention to Detail
Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Integrity
Job requires being honest and ethical.
Analytical Thinking
Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
Initiative
Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.

What education and training do Electricians need?

Electricians often have training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.

Electricians usually need one or two years of training involving both on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with this occupation.

Educational degrees among Electricians

  • 7.7% did not complete high school or secondary school
  • 37.3% completed high school or secondary school
  • 31.6% completed some college coursework
  • 15.5% earned a Associate's degree
  • 6.7% earned a Bachelor's degree
  • 1.0% earned a Master's degree
  • 0.2% earned a doctorate or professional degree

Knowledge and expertise required by Electricians

Electricians may benefit from understanding of specialized subject areas, such as building and construction, mechanical, or mathematics knowledge.

The list below shows several areas in which most Electricians might want to build proficiency, ranked by importance.

Building and Construction
Knowledge of materials, methods, and the tools involved in the construction or repair of houses, buildings, or other structures such as highways and roads.
Mechanical
Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
Mathematics
Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
Design
Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
Public Safety and Security
Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.

Important Abilities needed by Electricians

Electricians must develop a particular set of abilities to perform their job well. Abilities are individual capacities that influence a person's information processing, sensory perception, motor coordination, and physical strength or endurance. Individuals may naturally have certain abilities without explicit training, but most abilities can be sharpened somewhat through practice.

For example, Electricians need abilities such as problem sensitivity, deductive reasoning, and inductive reasoning in order to perform their job at a high level. The list below shows several important abilities for Electricians, ranked by their relative importance.

Problem Sensitivity
The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing that there is a problem.
Deductive Reasoning
The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
Inductive Reasoning
The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
Near Vision
The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
Oral Comprehension
The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.

Critical Skills needed by Electricians

Skills are developed capacities that enable people to function effectively in real-world settings. Unlike abilities, skills are typically easier to build through practice and experience. Skills influence effectiveness in areas such as learning, working with others, design, troubleshooting, and more.

Electricians frequently use skills like troubleshooting, repairing, and active listening to perform their job effectively. The list below shows several critical skills for Electricians, ranked by their relative importance.

Troubleshooting
Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.
Repairing
Repairing machines or systems using the needed tools.
Active Listening
Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
Critical Thinking
Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions, or approaches to problems.
Judgment and Decision Making
Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

What is the source of this information?

The information provided on this page is adapted from data and descriptions published by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration under the CC BY 4.0 license. TraitLab has modified some information for ease of use and reading, and the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment, and Training Administration has not approved, endorsed, or tested these modifications.

If you have any questions or suggestions about this information, please send a message.