Being an electrician involves spending days working with your hands, travelling and problem-solving. If you’ve been thinking of a trade to go into, you might have considered ‘why become an electrician?’
Being an electrician is a good career because it offers great wages and the work is in very high demand. The constant advancements in technology and the prominence of electricity means that it is easy to keep a job. You will have a lot of career options in this trade and can easily work for yourself.
We’re going to take you through some ins and outs of being an electrician to help you decide if this is the profession for you!
Why an electrician is a good career choice
Becoming an electrician is a good career choice because there is set to be an explosion of jobs in the field in the future. According to the Australian government’s job outlook site, the growth estimations for this field are strong. We live in a world that thrives on electrical use and technology is only continuing to advance. It’s no surprise that electricians will be in high demand as our electrical fields grow. Plus, over 90% of those trained as electricians work full-time.
There are just under 170,000 electricians who do this role as their main job across Australia. As with all trade jobs, electricians are highly trained experts in their field. So, job security for electricians is much higher than in other employment areas.
There is also a range of roles to choose from. Residential electricians work in people’s homes and domestic blocks installing new wiring, repairing power lines, and more. Construction electricians work on building sites and may be hired by schools, hospitals, or businesses. In contrast, emergency electricians are on call 24 hours a day to help their clients. The variety of position options contributes to the number of jobs available. There is so much to learn as an electrician, and you will not be concerned that you will be out of a job anytime soon.
The bonus is that you do a lot of on-the-job training which is very stimulating. There are plenty of opportunities that you can find through labour recruitment agency work and training. These companies are able to pair you up with employers looking for labour workers, where you can build up your experience.
Is becoming an electrician worth it?
Becoming an electrician is definitely ‘worth it’. This work is both challenging and fascinating. It is very varied. From examining blueprints to re-wiring a home, to electronics testing, no two days will ever be the same.
Not everyone is interested in working behind a desk. So, being an electrician means you aren’t tied to the same four walls every day which can make your job very stimulating. Even if you work for somebody else, your ‘office’ is your van which can take you from place to place and allow you the alone time you desire. And, no matter who you work for, electricians are more likely to have a stable career.
Another appeal that makes being an electrician ‘worth it’ is the fact that many electricians can work for themselves. This way they can work and own a business. Although this can be tough at first, many electricians love the fact that they can choose their own hours and be their own boss.
Whether you’re thinking of becoming an electrician or just looking at which career paths are in demand right now, being an electrician is a really great occupational route to choose.
Though it requires a lengthy training process, the end results are worth your while considering the high wages and variety of roles available.
Is it hard to become an electrician?
Becoming a qualified electrician, like most jobs, is not easy and it is hard to be sure of how long it takes to get good at your job. Becoming a really good electrician takes years of studying as an apprentice, by attending university, or learning in a vocational school. You also need to have a lot of work experience under your belt in order to succeed and know what you’re doing. But you can’t expect to excel in any job without putting in this effort.
Apprentices usually work full-time hours as well as having classroom training for at least a couple of hours a week. The average apprenticeship takes around 4 years to complete. So, whatever pathway you choose, becoming an electrician takes hard work and dedication.
You also need to consider the bodily aspect. If you are not prepared or able to do physically demanding work, then being an electrician may be unsuitable for you. The training and work will involve a lot of standing, lifting, and bending. But the exercise can be a major positive, keeping you up and about and improving your health.
Is being an electrician hard on your body?
Being an electrician can put a strain on your body. This sadly discourages many people from choosing the job. You do have to be mentally and physically resilient. Often working outside, many sparkies labour in all weathers on renovation projects. This means they can be exposed to hot and cold weather, sometimes rain. They don’t have the indoor luxury of choosing a temperature, but it means they are very tough and resilient workers.
Depending on your role, you may also be on call at irregular hours such as during the night to deal with power cuts. This can interrupt your off time, but it is accounted for and you will be given time to recover as needed. But you need to be aware of the responsibilities before choosing this career path.
There is also an increased risk of injury when working as an electrician compared to a typical office job. But any trades work comes with this risk increase. This is why you need to be constantly aware of your working environment and of potential hazards.
But, in order to protect you and your body, safety is a huge priority and there are many rules to follow. You should always take the correct PPE precautions and have the right amount of training behind you before working properly. Safework Australia has developed guides and informative videos that help understand the safety precautions for an electrician.
Whilst electrical work requires some fitness, the tax on your body is not great enough to be a reason you shouldn’t become an electrician. The reward of this work is worth it.
Does an electrician do a lot of maths?
While most electrical jobs involve simple math sums like additions and multiplications, sparkies are still required to have an in-depth knowledge of maths. But don’t let this scare you away. Electricians should be confident in using maths to inform their work. This allows them to meet and follow industry standards. But not every electrician starts off with this knowledge!
Decimals, fractions, percentages, and conversions are just a few of the maths skills electricians need. These all have many purposes including helping to figure out the size of a room or correct wire lengths.
Usually, electricians need to have a high school qualification in maths at a grade C or above to begin their training. But apprenticeships and on-the-job tuition give beginners all they need to succeed in the role, even if maths isn’t their strong suit. So, as we said, don’t let being ‘bad’ at math put you off being an electrician as a career option. You will be taught everything that you need to know to succeed and get the job done.
Even after gaining the right knowledge, is your first job hardest to get? Thinking of different trades that you could pursue as a career? Find out why you should become a carpenter! There are many more useful work and career tips in our articles, so be sure to check them out!