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Revealing Electrical Certifications - What's Required

Revealing Electrical Certifications - What's Required


Revealing Electrical Certifications - What's Required

by Jason Kendall

Due to the exciting choices available, the electrical industry offers jobs that many people choose. Although often assigned to as 'Electro-Mechanical Engineering", we will simply refer to this as the Electrical Industry. In addition, we will stay with the UK market and especially items relating to the domestic and commercial sectors rather than global issues. By starting on the main subjects and checking the 'add-ons' later on we can review the centre of the electrical industry.

Essentially, we see two distinct forms of entry into the electrical market. To being with we have the older apprentice course and then secondly we have the option for those who wish to make a career change to join the industry. Throughout this document we will simply refer to two types of people the 'Junior' and the 'Mature' entrants.

People who do not want to pay any extra salaries, but want to enter the industry with the focus of being self employed are who we refer to as Mature Entrants. By contrast, Junior entrants would seek to work with an established electrical firm and build their skill-sets as they train. Often a young apprentice will be in their first job since leaving school, and will therefore have a host of ancillary skills to learn during their first few years as a working adult.

The different ways into electrical work have two distinct types of training: In essence, the Junior Entrants follow an NVQ syllabus, or SVQ syllabus in Scotland. Whilst the core syllabus is relatively similar to non-NVQ commercial training, there is a particular requirement to attain the actual NVQ qualifications as part of the overall training program. 'Junior Entrants' will have to be in an apprenticeship of some sort in order to achieve the testing and course work required.

Mature Entrants, with the possible aim of entering the market from a self-employed perspective, seem to focus on attaining the most commercially viable qualifications (without the need for the NVQ element.) Having said that, the mature student does aim to gain the necessary skills to do the job, whilst at the same time reducing their training costs at all times. This system does meet the purposes set out and therefore often provides a faster and more direct route into a trading position.

So we have two defined routes laid out - one being for general employment and the other centred on self-employment. With self-employment a person may be working on a part-time or full time basis -to that end we will assume they are working full time. Salary options are often affected both by the know- how and the knack for doing things as well as any perceived formal levels of understanding.

The basic salary for Junior Entrants tends to start around the 12-15k mark, but rises regularly to around 30k with the right level of experience. That said, due to the UK press telling people that electricians can get salaries in excess of 70k p.a., it is more difficult to gauge incomes for 'Mature Entrants'. Regardless of all that is the need to cover off additional costs such as tools, clothes and even a vehicle and all that goes along with that. In addition to this they will also have to allow for items such as accountancy and personal/professional insurance. Whilst there is lots of available work, a severe skills shortage means electricians are very much in demand. Working 7 days a week is totally achievable for most people if they want it. It should be noted that figures of 70-100k p.a. advertised are not necessarily easy to come by and would require some long working hours to obtain them.

In light of the above, it is often understood that there is wild variance between the working expectations of Junior and Mature Entrants. Most 'Junior Entrants' do not work at the weekends. To be fair, if the Mature electrician is focused on the domestic market then they often find themselves working out of hours, especially to support their clients when they get home. This alters quite a bit, with lots of self employed electricians gaining much of their income from small office work, which is predominantly Monday to Friday 9am-5pm.

A Junior Entrant that has chosen to adopt a career within the electrical trade is more than likely to gain follow up expertise within the particular field they fall into, often dictated by the main business activities of their employer. Then again, the mature entrant can even go outside of the electrical field to gas work or plumbing work for example. If they are working mostly in the domestic market, this makes it easier for them to take on larger jobs across a range of disciplines (without having to sub-contract.)

'Green Engineering' is another area to consider. This requires new skills and working knowledge and is one of the fastest growing areas today. Looking together to the UK and the EEC this activity could be of benefit to both Junior and Mature Entrants, providing new growth and opportunities to both disciplines.

About the Author:
Copyright Scott Edwards 2009. Pop to Click HERE or Electrical Training.

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