How to Become an Electrician


An electrician creates, maintains, and fixes electric installations. Sites that electricians may work at include private houses, commercial buildings, construction sites, and on the streets. Electricians must assess plans of existing or prospective sites and come up with electric solutions.

An electrician could be involved in the entire process of setting up and looking after electric installations. There are several different types of electricians. Generally, a candidate who is training to become an electrician will niche into one of these types as they progress through the career. 

The types of electrician include: 

  • An installation electrician creates power systems, lights, and security installations in buildings.
  • A maintenance electrician also works in buildings and checks that pre-installed systems are still functioning efficiently.
  • An electrotechnical panel builder makes and installs control panels for heating, alarms, and other systems that operate within buildings.
  • A machine repair and rewind electrician fixes and maintains electrical motors and transformers. 
  • A highway systems electrician implements and maintains lighting and systems on the streets.

The main duties of an electrician will depend on their niche. However, their jobs will generally entail assessing the issue at hand, working with blueprints, and coming up with a relevant solution. They may also be required to give a quote for the expense of the work. Depending on the job, they may be needed for one session, or it could be a project that takes months to resolve.

There are several routes to become an electrician. Taking a post-secondary college course is a popular route, as this will not only teach all of the necessary vital skills but will give the candidate a relevant electrician qualification. 

Another way is by doing an electrician apprenticeship. The candidate will learn all of the essential skills on the job by becoming an electrician through this route, and they will generally be paid a small amount at the same time. They will then be expected to work for the training company for a set amount of time.

If the candidate has relevant experience and can demonstrate their skills, they may be able to apply for electrician roles independently, without having a qualification or apprenticeship evidence. Furthermore, many professionals in this career opt to become self-employed. There is also scope for career progression; electricians could become a design engineer, a site manager, or a consultant. 

Electricians should be excellent at problem-solving, have practical skills, and exhibit keen attention to detail. They will often need to work as part of a team but should also be able to make independent decisions.

Candidates thinking about becoming an electrician should know that the working hours can be long and irregular, with some work at unsocial hours. Electricians will also need to be prepared to work outside in all weather if the particular job requires it.

What degree is most commonly held by an Electrician?

  • Diploma of Maintenance
  • Bachelors of Electrical
  • Certificate III in Industrial Electronics
  • Diploma of Electrotechnology Systems
  • Certificate of Advanced Welding and Electrical Servicing

Career Transportability across Countries

Transportability: Medium
  As being an electrician is a highly-skilled job, professionals in this field may find opportunities to work abroad. They may find work on permanent or temporary projects. Candidates applying for overseas jobs should have a few years' work experience and be adaptable

What is the Salary of an Electrician?

Experience Average salary | year
Electrician 1-3 yrs $41,000 £33,500 $40,000
Electrician 3-5 yrs $50,781 £35,000 $47,118
Electrician 5-10 yrs $58,098 £42,000 $56,980

What skills are needed to become an Electrician?

  • Construction
  • Electrical Wiring
  • Electricians
  • Inspection
  • Commissioning
  • Electricity
  • Customer Service
  • Preventive Maintenance
  • Microsoft Office
  • Engineering
  • Project Planning
  • Management
  • Electrical Safety
  • Wiring
  • Project Management
  • Maintenance & Repair
  • Leadership
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Troubleshooting
  • Electrical Troubleshooting
  • Microsoft Excel
  • Power Distribution
  • Maintenance
  • Contract Management
  • Construction Management

Electrician Courses

Due to the broad amount of technical knowledge needed to become an electrician, it is recommended to take some relevant courses to increase the field experience. For example, learning about energy systems or green electrics can really help a candidate expand their knowledge.

  • Electrical Engineering: Sensing, Powering and Controlling

    Get a taste of an electrical engineering degree Build your confidence in communicating ideas and using technical vocabulary

  • New Energy Technologies: Energy Transition and Sustainable Development

    Explore the development of new energy technologies and discover key energy challenges with this online course

  • Energy Systems Integration: An Introduction

    Discover innovative sustainable energy systems solutions and explore an integrated perspective on the energy market

  • Technology Metals for a Green Future

    Learn how critical raw materials are found and used and explore their role in contributing to a more sustainable future

  • The Science of Nuclear Energy

    Discover the science behind nuclear energy and its role in energy provision in the past present and future

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