Thinking of learning an in-demand, well-paid trade? Becoming an electrician can be an ideal choice for you. If you always excelled in Math and Physics but didn’t have the will or the means to get an academic degree, it’s no reason to get upset. Whether working individually or for a firm, top electricians can earn up to $75.000, and the employment of electricians is projected to grow faster than most other professions.
However, even top experts sometimes cannot find good jobs, and the problem might be that their resumes are not up to par. If you need to get more interviews, find professional writers on a resume writing service and see how your enhanced resume increases your chances of getting hired. For even better results, order a cover letter as well! Need more tips on how to become a sought-after electrician and never be out of work? Read on to find them out.
1. Learn About the Trade
Unless you have professional electricians among your relatives or friends, learning as much as possible is the essential first step. Before committing yourself to years of hard work, you should ensure this career is what you want. First and foremost, search the internet for general information on what electricians do on a daily basis, what the basic requirements to entering this career field are, etc. If necessary, make inquiries in social media groups and on forums such as Quora and Reddit.
2. Research the Job Market
Once you have a clear idea of what your future career as an electrician might look like, you can proceed with researching the job market in your state. This activity will give you an understanding of crucial things such as the offer and demand ratio, the average salary, and the like. At this point, you can also begin with gathering general data like statistical figures to see the bigger picture and then move on to the job boards to read actual job ads. When doing the latter, remember to pay attention to the salary offered and the demands of the employers.
3. Get Professional Education
Although one doesn’t need an academic degree to become an electrician, professional training is still a must in this sphere. Luckily, though, you can get it much faster and cheaper than a Bachelor’s degree at Harvard. To pursue a career in electrical construction and maintenance, an associate degree or diploma is quite enough. To acquire these, you’ll only need to study for 1-2 years at a trade (vocational) or technical school. Some schools even offer professional programs for electricians that last less than a year.
4. Complete an Apprenticeship
Whether you get professional training at school or not, completing an apprenticeship is often mandatory. Prospective apprentices can apply for a program with a minimum of a high school diploma or CED; however, having field-related work experience and education is always an advantage. As a rule, apprenticeships take four to five years to complete. During this time, aspiring electricians get real-world, hands-on experience under the supervision of journeyman electricians and earn salaries that are typically around half of what their supervisors make.
5. Acquire a License
On completing your vocational training and apprenticeship program, you are ready to sit a state electrician exam and acquire a license. These exams are mandatory in most states and test a candidate’s knowledge of such areas as electrical theory, load calculations, etc. As the specific requirements differ from state to state, learning about them is vital. In the US, you can find all the information about licensing exams for electricians on the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) website.
6. Craft a Winning Resume
If you have already made valuable connections during your time at school and as an apprentice, lucky for you. However, every professional needs a decent resume to get hired, and it’s better to start thinking about it early on. If putting together a good resume seems intimidating, you can always find a career advice expert or use online career resources like resume writing services or resume builders. Whatever you opt for, bear in mind that a bot-beating resume capable of making it past the applicant tracking system (ATS and ATS bots) and engaging the hiring manager is an essential tool in your job search process.
7. Hone Your Soft Skills
While you might think that technical (hard) skills are the only thing necessary for an electrician, having a set of soft skills is no less vital for your career growth. Why? Well, just imagine a professional, knowledgeable electrician who is uncivil, unfriendly, and unwilling to answer your questions! Today, when competition is fierce, every worker should possess soft skills in order to maintain a good reputation and stimulate word-of-mouth promotion. The basic set includes the following:
- Communication skills
- Critical thinking
- Work ethic
Additionally, remember to pay attention to your self-presentation. A neat, smiling electrician eager to solve every problem always beats a gloomy and frustrated one (provided they are equally good at their trade, of course).
8. Learn to Promote Yourself
In the modern world, having a solid personal brand can work miracles. Well-known experts who know how to promote themselves earn more, have better clients, and are never out of work. Do you want to be one of them? Invest in your career by promoting yourself and your services on social media. Having a seemingly non-glamorous profession shouldn’t stop you: professionals of every trade can build a solid social media presence these days. For an electrician, YouTube can be a perfect choice as there are thousands of users on this platform looking for simple tips on fixing minor issues with their wiring and equipment.
To sum things up, this is what you need to do to become a pro electrician and get well-paid jobs:
- Learn about the trade and research the job market;
- Get professional training and complete an apprenticeship;
- Pass an exam and acquire a license;
- Hone your hard and soft skills and learn to promote your services.
It looks like a lot to do – but with due diligence and determination, you will surely make it. Good luck!