The Path To Becoming An Electrical Contractor

Eugene Vargas

If you like the idea of working with your hands instead of being stuck in an office cubicle, but you are concerned that a lot of practical work will not be stimulating enough for you, electrical contracting could be your perfect choice of career. While electricians fix electrical problems in homes and other properties, electrical contractors are essential to the actual construction process and will design and implement electrical systems for all kinds of new construction projects. Instead of experiencing the minor satisfaction of fixing a small wire problem, you can ensure that the electric system of a whole building is put in place safely and effectively.

But what are the steps to actually becoming an electrical contractor?

Education. If you want to propel your career as an electrical contractor, it is a good idea to study electrical engineering at university. In most of these degree courses, you will receive comprehensive training in the design and implementation of electrical systems, and this will give you a solid grounding that impresses prospective employers. An electrical engineering degree is, however, not essential. There are many electrical contractors who enter a contracting company after high school and work from the ground up via an internship scheme.

Experience. As with any job, and particularly jobs that are focused on practical tasks, experience is essential. If you have studied electrical engineering, it is likely that your degree had a great deal of practical focus, but you will still need to demonstrate that you can handle "real life" situations and that you can apply your electrical skills in a range of contexts. If you are just starting out and are lacking in real workplace experience, it is worth searching for apprenticeships and internships that will enable you to gain experience on the job while getting paid, with real prospects of full-time employment on the horizon.

License. Depending on the state in which you live and work, you may also require a special license to charge for electrical work. If you plan to work for an electrical contracting company, they should be able to make this application on your behalf, but if you will freelance as an electrical contractor, you will need to get in touch with the Electrical Licensing Board.

As your experience and confidence as an electrical contractor grows, you may even decide that you want to start your own electrical contracting company, employing aspiring electrical contractors just like yourself. 

For more information and advice, contact a company such as Amar Electrical.