GTA’s Skilled Worker Shortage
If you’re looking into becoming an electrician, you’ve chosen a very good career.Whether you choose to be an industrial or commercial electrician, this type of work will place you among the best-paid skilled workers in Canada. With demand expected to grow in the following years, this makes it a very profitable industry.Even better, you don’t need an expensive degree to start working—and earning money—while you train as an apprentice.So what skills do you need to be an electrician? What electrician qualifications are employers looking for?Here are the most important ones you need to have.
Technical skills refer to skills specific to the role. These are skills that are necessary for you to function effectively as an electrician and can be acquired through education, employment, or training.
1. Problem Solving and Mathematical Skills
Electricians spend a good amount of time measuring and calculating, so they need to have strong problem-solving and mathematical skills. This is important because incorrect calculations can lead to accidents, reduced efficiency, or expensive repairs.
However, aspiring electricians don’t need to worry about complicated math problems, as electricians use basic math, algebra, and trigonometry when computing room dimensions, wiring, electrical loads, and conversions. Still, knowing advanced math wouldn’t hurt, as it can make understanding the concepts much easier.
2. Knowledge of Basic Electrical Theory
You can’t be an electrician without knowledge of basic electrical theory. Understanding the basic physics behind electricity, Ohm’s Law, currents, electrical resistance, Faraday’s Law, and circuitry is necessary for identifying and solving minor electrical problems.
3. Blueprint Reading
Electricians must be able to read blueprints and electrical plans so they can locate outlets, circuits, and panelboards.
Being able to read blueprints will save time (and walls!) when doing renovations, repairs, or installations. Knowing where the wires are located will also save the electrician from accidentally breaking into a live wire and getting injured.
It is also helpful when planning where to install certain appliances or fixtures, so as to reduce electrical interference and/or to prevent overloading the electrical system.
Of course, being able to trace wires manually is equally important. But knowing how to read blueprints can save the client a lot of money—and for the electrician, their time and potentially, their life.
4. Knowledge of Safety Measures
Safety training is important to prevent accidents and damage. Having knowledge of basic safety procedures like those listed in the Canadian Electrical Code will help electricians make necessary preparations, isolate hazards, secure their workspace, and prevent errors. Following safety measures also helps improve the finished work and protect the client from electrocution, fire, and property damage.
5. Practical Experienceelectricians
Having adequate hands-on experience is crucial to an electrician. Practical experience exposes aspiring electricians to actual problems and provides real-world training on proper handling of tools, installation, maintenance, and repairs.
Handling electricity can be very dangerous without proper training. Having enough practice will help improve dexterity, confidence, and quality of work while inspiring creativity.
Soft skills are extra skills that may or may not be required from you as an electrician, but will nonetheless improve your employability and success. Clients appreciate well-rounded electricians—that’s why electricians with the following soft skills are the most sought-after.
6. Good Communication Skills
Whether electricians work alone or as team members, they need to be able to communicate effectively with other people.
Having good communication skills will help electricians properly relay information and understand instructions so they can provide excellent service and work efficiently with others.
7. Time Management Skills
Every client wants to know how long a project will last—and they want to be able to rely on electricians to meet these deadlines, which is why it is important that they have good time management skills.
This will allow them to correctly calculate their labour fees, as well as accurately create and follow a schedule based on their capacity and the client’s needs.
Resourceful electricians can find the best solutions with their tools and budget without compromising quality and safety. This is especially important during emergencies and when permanent solutions are not available right away. Resourcefulness can go a long way—and can even save a life!
Get a Head Start at Skilled Trades College of Canada
Although some companies will hire aspiring electricians without any experience, having the right knowledge and training can put you on top of the applicant pile. It will also result in better pay and allow you to work on your own projects to accumulate clients over time. Skilled Trades College of Canada is an industry-recognized training centre that offers an Electrician Pre-Apprenticeship Program designed to equip students with essential electrician skills paired with ample hands-on training—so they are job-ready upon graduating.Call us now or send us a message to learn more!