Electricians design, assemble, install, test, commission, diagnose, maintain and repair electrical networks, systems, circuits, equipment, components, appliances and facilities for industrial, commercial and domestic purposes, and service and repair lifts, escalators and related equipment.
examining blueprints, wiring diagrams and specifications to determine sequences and methods of operation
measuring and laying out installation reference points
selecting, cutting and connecting wire and cable to terminals and connectors
using electrical and electronic test instruments to trace and diagnose faults
repairing and replacing faulty wiring and defective parts
positioning and installing electrical switchboards
connecting electrical systems to power supply
testing continuity of circuit
installing, testing and adjusting electric and mechanical parts of lifts
Vocational Education and Training (VET)
The NSC produces employment projections to show where likely future job opportunities may be. The latest data are for the five years from November 2021 to November 2026. Over this period, the number of workers:
- is expected to grow strongly
- is likely to reach 157,700 by 2026.
Source: National Skills Commission Employment Projections to 2026.
Notes: The number employed includes people who work in this occupation as their main job. People who work in more than one job are counted against the occupation they work the most hours in.
Employment projections figures are rounded to the nearest 100. Calculations based on these rounded figures may result in differences to the numbers that are displayed on this page. Employment projections data (including occupations) can be downloaded from the Employment Projections page.
Number of Workers
Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, ABS seasonally adjusted data to November 2021 and National Skills Commission Employment Projections to 2026.
Earnings and hours
Around 90% of people employed as Electricians work full-time hours, in all their jobs combined. This is 24 percentage points above the all jobs average (66%).
Full-time workers work an average of 45 hours per week in their main job. This is similar to the all jobs average (44 hours per week).
More than a third of workers regularly work overtime or extra hours (either paid or unpaid).
Median full-time earnings are $2,120 per week, this is much higher than the all jobs median ($1,593):
- 3 in 4 workers earn more than $1,650
- 1 in 4 earn more than $2,743
Median hourly earnings are $49, this is more than the all jobs median ($41 per hour).
Sources: Full-time share and full-time hours: ABS, 2016 Census, customised report. Compared to the all jobs average. Overtime hours: ABS, Characteristics of Employment, 2021. Full-time median earnings and median hourly earnings: ABS, Survey of Employee Earnings and Hours, May 2021. Compared to all jobs median.
Weekly Earnings (Before Tax)
|Earnings||Electricians||All Jobs Average|
Source: Based on ABS Survey of Employee Earnings and Hours, May 2021, Customised Report. Median weekly total cash earnings for full-time non-managerial employees paid at the adult rate. Earnings are before tax and include amounts salary sacrificed. Earnings can vary greatly depending on the skills and experience of the worker and the demands of the role. These figures should be used as a guide only, not to determine a wage rate.
Employment across Australia
Employment by State and Territory (% Share)
|State||Electricians||All Jobs Average|
Around 44% of Electricians live outside of capital cities, compared with the all jobs average of 38%.
Western Australia has a large share of employment relative to its population size.
Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian states, territories and regions, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age and gender
The median age of Electricians is 34 years. This is younger than the all jobs average of 40 years.
A large share of workers are aged 25 to 34 years.
Females make up 2% of the workforce. This is 46 percentage points below the all jobs average of 48%.
Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile and gender share compared to the all jobs average.
Age Profile (% Share)
|Age Bracket||Electricians||All Jobs Average|
|65 and Over||2.3||4.2|
Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Education, training and experience
A certificate III in electrotechnology (electrician or systems electrician) is usually needed to work as an Electrician. This course is often completed as part of an apprenticeship.
- My Skills to compare Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses, providers and student outcomes.
- AAPathways website to explore Electrotechnology VET training pathways.
Highest Level of Education (% Share)
|Type of Qualification||Electricians||All Jobs Average|
|Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate||0.4||10.1|
|Year 10 and below||2.4||12.5|
Source: ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Highest qualification completed by workers in this job (in any field of study). Qualifications needed by new workers might be different from the qualifications of workers already in the job.
Skills and Knowledge
Employers look for Electricians who have good people skills, are reliable and have a strong work ethic.
Skills can be improved through training or experience.
Figuring out why a machine or system went wrong and working out what to do about it.
Thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem.
Installing equipment, machines, wiring, or programs.
Fixing machines or systems.
50%Coordination with others
Being adaptable and coordinating work with other people.
Figuring out the best way to teach or learn something new.
Keeping track of how well work is progressing so you can make changes or improvements.
50%Quality control analysis
Doing tests and checking products, services, or processes to make sure they are working properly.
Maintaining equipment and deciding what maintenance will be needed in the future.
46%Judgment and decision making
Figuring out the pros and cons of different options and choosing the best one.
Being able to use what you have learnt to solve problems now and again in the future.
Using maths to solve problems.
Reading work related information.
45%Complex problem solving
Noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it.
Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
Talking to others.
Listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions.
Teaching people how to do something.
43%Operation and control
Controlling equipment or systems.
Deciding on the kind of tools and equipment needed to do a job.
These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.
78%Building and construction
Materials, and methods used to construct or repair houses, buildings, or other structures like highways and roads.
Machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.
Design techniques, tools, and principles used to make detailed technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
54%Customer and personal service
Understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.
The physical laws of matter, motion and energy, and how they interact through space and time.
49%Public safety and security
Use of equipment, rules and ideas to protect people, data, property, and institutions.
48%Administration and management
Business principles involved in strategic planning, leadership, and coordinating people and resources.
English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
43%Computers and electronics
Circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
Transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.
42%Education and training
Curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
41%Engineering and technology
Use engineering, science and technology to design and produce goods and services.
Word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office work.
34%Production and processing
Raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and ways of making and distributing goods.
Human behaviour; differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; research methods; assessing and treating disorders.
25%Law and government
How our laws and courts work. Government rules and regulations, and the political system.
Moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road.
25%Personnel and human resources
Recruiting and training people, managing pay and other entitlements (like sick leave), and negotiating pay and conditions.
20%Communications and media
Media production, communication, and dissemination. Includes written, spoken, and visual media.
Workers use these physical and mental abilities..
See details that are up-close (within a few feet).
Notice differences between colours, including shades of colour and brightness.
Listen to and understand what people say.
Communicate by speaking.
Imagine how something will look after it is moved around or changed.
Use general rules to find answers or solve problems logically.
55%Sorting or ordering
Order or arrange things in a pattern or sequence (e.g., numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
Notice when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong, even if you can't solve the problem.
Use lots of detailed information to come up with answers or make general rules.
Bend, stretch, twist, or reach with your body, arms, and/or legs.
See details that are far away.
Put together small parts with your fingers.
46%Flexibility of closure
See a pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) hidden in other distracting material.
Use your abdominal and lower back muscles a number of times without 'giving out' or fatiguing.
Come up with different ways of grouping things.
Use your eyes to quickly compare groups of letters, numbers, pictures, or other things.
Quickly move your hand to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
Use your arms and/or legs at the same time while sitting, standing, or lying down.
Keep your hand or arm steady.
Speak clearly so others can understand you.
These are kinds of activities workers regularly do in this job.
73%Handling and moving objects
Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, moving and manipulating objects.
69%Doing physically active work
Use your arms, legs and whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling objects.
66%Monitoring people, processes and things
Checking objects, actions, or events, and keeping an eye out for problems.
65%Keeping your knowledge up-to-date
Keeping up-to-date with technology and new ideas.
62%Planning and prioritising work
Deciding on goals and putting together a detailed plan to get the work done.
60%Looking for changes over time
Comparing objects, actions, or events. Looking for differences between them or changes over time.
59%Coordinating the work of a team
Getting members of a group to work together to finish a task.
58%Checking for errors or defects
Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials for errors, problems or defects.
57%Working with electronic equipment
Servicing, repairing, calibrating, regulating, fine-tuning, or testing electronic devices and equipment.
56%Assessing and evaluating things
Working out the value, importance, or quality of things, services or people.
56%Making decisions and solving problems
Using information to work out the best solution and solve problems.
55%Training and teaching others
Understanding the needs of others, developing training programs, and teaching or instructing.
53%Collecting and organising information
Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or checking information or data.
Using your own ideas for developing, designing, or creating something new.
51%Communicating within a team
Giving information to co-workers by telephone, in writing, or in person.
51%Scheduling work and activities
Working out the timing of events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others.
49%Driving vehicles or equipment
Running, manoeuvring, navigating, or driving things like forklifts, vehicles, aircraft, or water craft.
49%Checking compliance with standards
Deciding whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
45%Researching and investigating
Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.
40%Estimating amounts, costs and resources
Working out sizes, distances, amounts, time, costs, resources, or materials needed for a task.
Interests and demands
Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.
Interests are the style or type of work we prefer to do. All interest areas are shown below.
Practical, hands-on work. Often with plants and animals, or materials like wood, tools, and machinery.
Following set procedures and routines. Working with numbers and details more than with ideas, usually following rules.
Ideas and thinking. Searching for facts and figuring out problems in your head.
Starting up and carrying out projects. Leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes require risk taking and often deal with business.
Working with forms, designs and patterns. Often need self-expression and can be done without following rules.
Working with people. Helping or providing service to others.
Work alone and make decisions. Workers are able to try out their own ideas, make decisions on their own, and work with little or no supervision.
Supportive management that stands behind employees. Workers are treated fairly by their company, they are supported by management, and have supervisors who train them well.
Results oriented. Workers are able to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment.
Job security and good working conditions. There is usually a steady flow of interesting work, and the pay and conditions are generally good.
Serve and work with others. Workers usually get along well with each other, do things to help other people, and are rarely pressured to do things that go against their sense of right and wrong.
Advancement and the potential to lead. Workers are recognised for the work that they do, they may give directions and instructions to others, and they are looked up to in their company and their community.
96%Wear common protective or safety equipment
Wear equipment like safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hard hats or life jackets.
94%Spend time standing
Spend time standing at work.
Talk with people face-to-face.
92%Contact with people
Have contact with people by telephone, face-to-face, or any other way.
91%Loud or uncomfortable sounds
Be exposed to noises and sounds that are distracting or uncomfortable.
90%Using your hands to handle, control, or feel
Spend time using your hands to handle, control, or feel objects, tools or controls.
87%Health and safety of others
Take responsibility for the health and safety of others.
86%Being exact or accurate
Be very exact or highly accurate.
86%Freedom to make decisions
Have freedom to make decision on your own.
Talk on the telephone.
Work near dangers like high voltage electricity, flammable material, explosives or chemicals.
Work to strict deadlines.
83%Indoors, not heat controlled
Work indoors without heating or cooling (e.g., warehouse without heat).
Work near dangerous equipment like saws, machinery with open moving parts, or moving traffic.
Work with people in a group or team.
Have freedom to decide on tasks, priorities, and goals.
80%Physically close to people
Work physically close to other people.
80%Frequent decision making
Frequently make decisions that impact other people.
79%Impact of decisions
Make decisions that have a large impact on other people.
78%Responsible for outcomes
Take responsibility for the results of other people's work.
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The skills and importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 47-2111.00 - Electricians.