What Jobs Does an Electrical Course Lead to?
Electricians are the most common career path following an electrical course, which includes working with circuit boards, wiring and electronics. Tasks may include designing, installing, maintaining, repairing, and testing electrical wiring and circuits in homes, businesses or industrial settings. There is a significant selection of jobs open to people who have completed an electrical course. Some may work in residential properties–either on newly built homes or repairing and maintaining existing wiring–while other opportunities include work in industrial environments such as robotics and electrical appliances.
Other electrical careers are involved in electrical engineering, which involves work on more complex and larger-scale tasks like security systems, video cabling, Internet access, communications systems and commercial systems where cabling is a feature. In contrast, some electrical engineers work on huge projects which include power lines and other external electrical work. This work can be hazardous – a high degree of skill is needed. Electrical work is available in a number of different industries, including aerospace, marine, construction, oil and gas, materials and metals, telecommunications, rail and utilities.
Career Outcomes for Electrical Courses:
- Electrical Fitter
- Specialised Electrician
- Electrical Mechanic
- Broadcasting Professional Engineer
- Antenna Engineer
- Chief Engineer – Electrical Power
- Digital Circuits Engineer
What’s the Industry Like for Electricians?
In Australia, the average electrician salary is around $69,000 per year, whereas electrical engineers can take home almost $76,000 a year, however this can require more training. Future growth in the sector over the next five years is predicted to be moderate to high, with unemployment being quite low in the electrician industry. This type of work is available in most parts of Australia and most vacancies are full-time. The industry is very male dominated – around 94% of electrical engineers are male. Most electrical engineers are graduates, although electrician apprenticeships are a popular career path that can lead to a promising start for entry-level positions.
What do Electrical Courses Involve?
There are a number of different routes into electrical engineering, depending on the branch that you wish to work in and the level of competence required. A recognised entry-level qualification is the Certificate II in Electrotechnology. This TAFE electrical course provides a basic introduction and overview of topics such as health & safety in the workplace, carrying out routine activities in an energy sector environment (including planning, completion and testing) and identifying the right components, accessories and materials to get a job completely correctly. Other Certificates in Electrical work can involve an apprenticeship, where you can take part in hands-on work while also completing your studies at a TAFE institute or other education provider.
There’s also the option of studying entirely online, where you can combine it with work, additional study or other commitments. A Certificate II in Electrotechnology can lead onto a higher Certificate III course or an apprenticeship. The benefit of completing the Certificate II in Electrotechnology first means that you’re more prepared for an apprenticeship and can fast-track your capabilities
A Certificate III in Electrotechnology gives learners the skills and experience they need to obtain their electrician’s license, as set out by the Electrical Regulatory Authorities Council (ERAC). Electrical courses generally cover installation, repair, maintenance, testing, fault finding and set-up for domestic and commercial premises.
How to Become an Electrician – What Skills and Personal Qualities are Required?
To become an electrician, you can complete Certificates II and III in Electrotechnology and take part in an apprenticeship while doing so. If you wish to specialise, you may need to undertake further courses to be suitably qualified. Some learners study full-time, then go on to an apprenticeship; others get an apprenticeship and learn on the job. If you’re thinking of pursuing a graduate career in electronics, you will need to complete a relevant University degree, such as a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering or a Bachelor of Electronics, however these aren’t really needed to start a career as an electrician.
To work in electronics, either as an electrician or an electrical engineer, you need to be:
- Logical and level-headed
- Assess potential dangers or risks
- Have good eye sight
- Patient and pay attention to detail
- Work well with others
As many electricians are self-employed or run their own business, they also need to be very organised and have a fair degree of administrative ability. A good knowledge of maths is also important.
What Activities do Electricians Do on a Day-to-Day Basis?
The exact nature of the jobs an electrician will do varies depending on where and when they’re working, but a large part of their day will be spent diagnosing faults, repairing them and then testing the circuit for integrity. Electricians can maintain and repair electrical equipment, remove electrical hazards, install or replace electrical systems or work from electrical blueprints. The job may include emergency work to make dangerous appliances or circuitry safe, as well as routine testing to minimise the risk of unexpected failure at a later date.
If an electrician specialises in repairing and replacing electrical factory machines, they’ll spend time repairing, testing and installing equipment on several different sites. Often known as motor winding electricians, this job can involve a considerable amount of travel between jobs.
Some electricians may work in a communications environment, in which case they may be tasked with installing electrical or communication cables, as well as repairing or maintaining telecommunications equipment, security cameras, medical equipment and similar pieces of machinery. As well as civilian electrician jobs; there’s also military electricians who undertake similar tasks, but on military vehicles, communications or similar.
Electricians may well wear a uniform to work and can work either as part of a company or be self-employed. The skills and knowledge which an electrician has can also be augmented by additional, location or sector specific knowledge, enabling electricians to specialise in niche work as well as more general tasks.
Think you’re a good fit for the job? Browse electrical courses from quality providers across the country and get started in your career today!