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Working As an Electrical Specialist

  • Interacting With Computers
  • Getting Information
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards
  • $68,000

    Average Salary

What Does An Electrical Specialist Do

Electrical and electronics engineering technicians help engineers design and develop computers, communications equipment, medical monitoring devices, navigational equipment, and other electrical and electronic equipment. They often work in product evaluation and testing, using measuring and diagnostic devices to adjust, test, and repair equipment. They are also involved in the manufacture and deployment of equipment for automation.

Duties

Electrical engineering technicians typically do the following:

  • Put together electrical and electronic systems and prototypes
  • Build, calibrate, and repair electrical instruments or testing equipment
  • Visit construction sites to observe conditions affecting design
  • Identify solutions to technical design problems that arise during the construction of electrical systems
  • Inspect designs for quality control, report findings, and make recommendations
  • Draw diagrams and write specifications to clarify design details of experimental electronics units

Electrical engineering technicians install and maintain electrical control systems and equipment, and modify electrical prototypes, parts, and assemblies to correct problems. When testing systems, they set up test equipment and evaluate the performance of developmental parts, assemblies, or systems under simulated conditions. They then analyze test information to resolve design-related problems.

Electronics engineering technicians typically do the following:

  • Design basic circuitry and draft sketches to clarify details of design documentation, under engineers’ direction
  • Build prototypes from rough sketches or plans
  • Assemble, test, and maintain circuitry or electronic components according to engineering instructions, technical manuals, and knowledge of electronics
  • Adjust and replace defective circuitry and electronic components
  • Make parts, such as coils and terminal boards, by using bench lathes, drills, or other machine tools

Electronics engineering technicians identify and resolve equipment malfunctions and then work with manufacturers to get replacement parts. They also calibrate and perform preventative maintenance on equipment and systems.

These technicians often need to read blueprints, schematic drawings, and engineering instructions for assembling electronic units. They also write reports and record data on testing techniques, laboratory equipment, and specifications.

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How To Become An Electrical Specialist

Electrical and electronics engineering technicians typically need an associate’s degree.

Education

Programs for electrical and electronics engineering technicians usually lead to an associate’s degree in electrical or electronics engineering technology. Vocational–technical schools include postsecondary institutions that serve local students and emphasize training needed by local employers.

Community colleges offer programs similar to those in technical institutes but include more theory-based and liberal arts coursework. Some of these colleges allow students to concentrate in computer electronics, industrial electronics, or communications electronics.

Prospective electrical and electronics engineering technicians usually take courses in ANSI C, C++ programming, Java programming, physics, microprocessors, and circuitry. The Technology Accreditation Commission of ABET accredits programs that include at least college algebra, trigonometry, and basic science courses.

Important Qualities

Logical-thinking skills. Electrical and electronics engineering technicians must isolate and then identify problems for the engineering staff to work on. They need good reasoning skills to identify and fix problems. Technicians must also be able to follow a logical sequence or specific set of rules to carry out engineers’ designs, inspect designs for quality control, and put together prototypes.

Math skills. Electrical and electronics engineering technicians use math for analysis, design, and troubleshooting in their work.

Mechanical skills. Electronics engineering technicians in particular must be able to use hand tools and soldering irons on small circuitry and electronic parts to create detailed electronic components by hand.

Observational skills. Electrical engineering technicians sometimes visit construction sites to make sure that electrical engineers’ designs are being carried out correctly. They are responsible for evaluating projects onsite and reporting problems to engineers.

Problem-solving skills. Electrical and electronics engineering technicians create what engineers have designed and often test the designs to make sure that they work. Technicians help to resolve any problems that come up in carrying out the engineers’ designs.

Writing skills. These technicians must write reports about onsite construction, the results of testing, or problems they find when carrying out designs. Their writing must be clear and well organized so that the engineers they work with can understand the reports.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

The National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET) offers certification in electrical power testing. This certification would benefit those technicians working in the electric power generation, transmission, and distribution industry.

ETA International also offers certifications in several fields, including basic electronics, biomedical, and renewable energy.

The International Society of Automation offers certification as a Control Systems Technician. To gain such certification, technicians must demonstrate skills in pneumatic, mechanical, and electronic instrumentation. In addition, they must demonstrate an understanding of process control loops and process control systems.

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Electrical Specialist Career Paths

Average Length of Employment
Electrical Foreman 5.0 years
Top Careers Before Electrical Specialist
Electrician 19.2%
Technician 3.8%
Owner 3.3%
Specialist 3.3%
Supervisor 3.0%
Top Careers After Electrical Specialist
Electrician 13.5%
Technician 6.4%
Specialist 3.9%
Mechanic 3.9%
Owner 3.6%

Do you work as an Electrical Specialist?

Average Yearly Salary
$68,000
Show Salaries
$48,000
Min 10%
$68,000
Median 50%
$68,000
Median 50%
$68,000
Median 50%
$68,000
Median 50%
$68,000
Median 50%
$68,000
Median 50%
$68,000
Median 50%
$96,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
Occidental Petroleum
Highest Paying City
La Porte, TX
Highest Paying State
Texas
Avg Experience Level
3.9 years
How much does an Electrical Specialist make at top companies?
The national average salary for an Electrical Specialist in the United States is $68,667 per year or $33 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $48,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $97,000.

Real Electrical Specialist Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Electrical Specialist/Engineer Alstom Power Inc. Littleton, CO Feb 19, 2015 $135,239
Electrical Specialist/Engineer Alstom Power Inc. Littleton, CO Oct 01, 2014 $130,000 -
$140,000
Electrical Specialist/Engineer Alstom Power Inc. Denver, CO Jul 05, 2012 $130,000
DS Electrical Specialist Conocophillips Company Houston, TX Nov 12, 2012 $111,040 -
$190,080
Senior Electrical Specialist SBM Atlantia, Inc. Houston, TX Apr 11, 2011 $90,480 -
$130,000
Electrical Specialist Supervisor M.C. Dean, Inc. Bethesda, MD Jul 02, 2010 $80,224

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Top Skills for An Electrical Specialist

  1. Electrical Systems
  2. Safety Procedures
  3. Customer Service
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Participate in operating unit production teams and provide technical advice on complex matters in relation to the electrical systems and installations.
  • Mentored apprentice electricians; advised on proper safety procedures and methods for maximizing productivity, efficiency, and quality.
  • Completed all electrical work and assisted with customer service & sales of department merchandise.
  • Serviced and repaired backup generators to include electric motors.
  • Helped troubleshoot electrical, mechanical, and PLC problems.

Rank:

Average Salary:

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Top 10 Best States for Electrical Specialists

  1. Alabama
  2. New Mexico
  3. Texas
  4. Florida
  5. Maine
  6. Louisiana
  7. Oklahoma
  8. Tennessee
  9. Oregon
  10. Arizona
  • (213 jobs)
  • (107 jobs)
  • (1,105 jobs)
  • (863 jobs)
  • (51 jobs)
  • (165 jobs)
  • (123 jobs)
  • (296 jobs)
  • (198 jobs)
  • (275 jobs)

Electrical Specialist Demographics

Gender

Male

82.4%

Unknown

9.1%

Female

8.5%
Ethnicity

White

61.1%

Hispanic or Latino

17.2%

Black or African American

11.2%

Asian

6.8%

Unknown

3.7%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

50.0%

Chinese

8.3%

Turkish

8.3%

Persian

8.3%

Cantonese

8.3%

Dakota

8.3%

Polish

8.3%
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Electrical Specialist Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

11.3%

Spartanburg Technical College

8.5%

University of Houston

7.0%

Hudson Valley Community College

5.6%

Western Washington University

5.6%

Long Beach City College

4.2%

Lincoln Technical Institute

4.2%

Community College of the Air Force

4.2%

Wichita Technical Institute

4.2%

Aquinas College (Michigan)

4.2%

Kirkwood Community College

4.2%

Delgado Community College

4.2%

University of Texas at El Paso

4.2%

Minnesota State University - Mankato

4.2%

Lamar University

4.2%

Houston Community College

4.2%

Louisiana Tech University

4.2%

Genesee Community College

4.2%

Salt Lake Community College

4.2%

Central Washington University

2.8%
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Majors

Electrical Engineering

22.9%

Electrical Engineering Technology

18.0%

Business

16.1%

Electrical And Power Transmission Installers

5.9%

Industrial Technology

4.3%

Engineering

3.7%

Automotive Technology

3.4%

Computer Science

2.8%

General Studies

2.2%

Management

2.2%

Aviation

2.2%

Information Technology

2.2%

Electrical/Electronics Maintenance And Repair Technology

1.9%

Communication

1.9%

Criminal Justice

1.9%

Music

1.9%

Environmental Control Technologies/Technicians

1.9%

Heating And Air Conditioning

1.9%

Drafting And Design

1.5%

Electromechanical Instrumentation And Maintenance Technologies/Technicians

1.5%
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Degrees

Other

33.3%

Bachelors

27.2%

Associate

22.9%

Certificate

6.7%

Masters

6.1%

Diploma

2.3%

License

1.3%

Doctorate

0.2%
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What Is It Like To Work As An Electrical Specialist

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electrical control systems engineer

November 16, 2019 on Zippia

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Electrical Specialist.. Show More

What do you like the most about working as Electrical Specialist?

I would like to be specialist in specific industrial equipment .. Show More

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I will not be comfortable when I do not know about industrial equipment... Show More

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Updated May 19, 2020