6 Possible Misconceptions About the Electrical Industry
Dispelling Misconceptions About Entering the Electrical Industry
If you’re considering going into the electrical trade, you probably know that it requires industry-specific training. And since virtually everybody uses electricity, the public often forms misconceptions about what those in the electrical trade do every day. Find out what those common misconceptions are, and what’s covered when preparing to enter the electrical field of trade.
Misconception #1: Entering the electrical trade doesn’t require an education.
Many employers will not hire people without experience or industry specific training, and pursuing higher education in the electrical industry can greatly increase employers’ interest in hiring you. Pursuing your training from a school with a strong history in the following can increase your future success even further:
- Installation and safety
- Grounding and bonding
- Fuses and wiring
- Outlets and circuits
- Electrical loads
- Theory and application
- Wire tables
- Motors and controllers
Misconception #2: The electrical industry doesn’t offer room for career growth.
Because you don’t need a four-year degree to enter the industry, it’s assumed that there isn’t opportunity to grow in your electrical career. Contrary to popular belief, a person in the electrical field is not finished learning as soon as he or she begins working. Years of experience improve electrical knowledge, and individuals can pursue advanced electrical training.
Misconception #3: Electrical work is too dangerous.
While electrical work requires attention to detail and solid knowledge of how electricity works, it shouldn’t be dangerous for those with proper electrical industry training. Ensure your electrical training covers electrical safety, and check the accreditation of your school. While shocks, burns, cuts, and falls are possible, a reputable school will be accredited and recognized for its ability to graduate safety-minded electrical person in the electrical field who are trained on risk prevention.
Misconception #4: Electrical is a dying field.
Because the trade has been around for decades while new technologies have evolved, people often consider electrical an industry no longer at its peak – an industry for older workers who will soon retire. However, electricity remains a fundamental component of most technologies, even as we enter an age of green energy. Households and businesses are in need of a younger generation of people in the electrical field to serve their evolving electrical needs. The Bureau of Labor Statistics can give you a sense of the size of the electrical field.
Misconception #5: All people in the electrical field do the same thing.
Not all people in the electrical field are linemen. Those in indoor or building electricity often focus on one specialized area, which could be one of the following:
- Light industrial
- Voice-Data-Video wiring
If you’re not sure what type of electrical work you’re interested in – or even that you’ll want to specialize – it’s important that you pursue electrical industry training that covers all the focus areas. Get a firm foundation in all the basics so you can make an informed decision about the type of electrical job you want to pursue – whether it’s one with daily tasks focused on one type of electrical or one that allows you to explore several types of electrical work in a single week.
Misconception #6: Individuals in the electrical field will never have full-time jobs.
While many in the electrical field are paid hourly, the amount of hours they work usually equals a full-time job. Rising, electrical program graduates should have an advantage over non-grads in seeking an entry-level job in the field.
As you consider pursuing electrical training, remember to talk to schools about what their electrical graduates do in the real world and what job placement assistance they have available.