Construction Electricians

(NOC 7241)

in All Trades and Transportation

Construction electricians install, repair, and maintain electrical systems that are designed to provide heat, light, power, control, signals, or fire alarms for all types of buildings, structures, and premises. Construction electricians may specialize in construction, maintenance, or other types of electrical work, or in specific types of installations like residential, commercial, or institutional. Construction electricians may work for electrical contractors and maintenance departments of buildings and other institutions, or they may be self-employed. Apprentices are included in this group.

Job Outlook

average

Read more

  • Estimate Strong growth employment change, 2021-2023
  • Estimate 565 openings due to growth and retirements, 2021-2023
  • Estimate High rate of unemployment in 2022

Compared to: All Trades and Transportation

  • Estimate 4040 employment change, 2021-2023
  • Estimate 8425 openings due to growth and retirements, 2021-2023
  • Estimate rate of unemployment not available for these occupation.

Outlook for construction electricians: average, mostly balanced conditions in the labour market

Size of the occupation in Nova Scotia: large, with job openings occurring regularly

Demand: expected to rise between 2021 and 2023 due to increased activity in the construction sector, with the growth in new home construction and the start of several large hospital projects

Job openings: increase expected in the coming years due to both employment growth and retirements. Jobs may be either permanent or temporary positions as both are common.

Work hours: full-time hours, normally

Self-employment: a portion of the workforce is self-employed, which may appeal to some people’s interests/motivations.

Strong growth in the construction industry, especially in the Halifax region, has resulted in high demand for many skilled trades. Demand is highest for full-trained journeymen. Fewer opportunities are available for apprentices or those with less experience.

Hourly Pay

$18.00

Minimum

$26.00

Median

$37.00

Maximum

Annual Pay

$10,355

Minimum

$43,569

Median

$84,770

Maximum

Compared to: All Trades and Transportation

Hourly Pay

$15.00

Minimum

$24.00

Median

$37.00

Maximum

Annual Pay

$7,580

Minimum

$37,269

Median

$79,787

Maximum

About the job

Nature of work

Construction electricians install, repair, and maintain electrical systems that are designed to provide heat, light, power, control, signals, or fire alarms for all types of buildings, structures, and premises.

Construction electricians may specialize in construction, maintenance, or other types of electrical work, or in specific types of installations like residential, commercial, or institutional.

Construction electricians may work for electrical contractors and maintenance departments of buildings and other institutions, or they may be self-employed. Apprentices are included in this group.

Job duties

Construction Electricians:

  • Read and interpret drawings, circuit diagrams and electrical code specifications to verify wiring layouts for new or existing installations
  • Pull wire through conduits and through holes in walls and floors
  • Install brackets and hangers to support electrical equipment
  • Cut, thread, bend, assemble, and install conduits and other types of electrical conductor enclosures and fittings
  • Position, maintain, and install distribution and control equipment like switches, relays, circuit breaker panels, and fuse enclosures
  • Splice, join and connect wire to form circuits
  • Test circuits to ensure compatibility and safety of system
  • Install, replace, maintain, and repair electrical systems and related electrical equipment
  • Troubleshoot and isolate faults in electrical and electronic systems and remove and replace faulty components
  • Install data cabling
  • Install and maintain fibre optic systems
  • Install, replace, maintain, and repair renewable power sources like wind, solar, and related equipment
  • Conduct preventive maintenance programs and keep maintenance records

Sample job titles

  • apprentice electrician
  • building construction electrician
  • construction and maintenance electrician
  • construction electrician
  • electrical wiring installer - construction
  • electrician
  • residential construction wirer

Skills

  • physical strength and stamina
  • problem solving skills
  • an aptitude for math
  • mechanical ability
  • the ability to distinguish colours to work with colour-coded wiring
  • the ability to plan and organize
  • the ability to do precision work
  • the ability to work in high places
  • the ability to follow instructions
  • the ability to work with tools
  • the ability to get along well with co-workers
  • the ability to interact with other trades, engineers, and inspectors
  • the ability to coach and mentor
  • communication skills including reading skills
  • digital and computer skills for dealing with changing technologies, job performance, learning, and updating skills
  • for those installing or maintaining equipment in homes or businesses, the ability to keep a neat appearance and deal with customers

Job requirements

  • High school or equivalent
  • Training through a 7,200-hour apprenticeship program with four apprenticeship levels: to become an apprentice you first need to have a job - enter an apprenticeship agreement either directly through an employer or after graduating from a college-level pre-apprenticeship program; learn on the job, mentored by a certified journeyperson who signs off on skills in a logbook.
  • Trade Qualifier option, 10,800 hours and other criteria
  • Certification for construction electricians is compulsory in Nova Scotia
  • Write and score a minimum of 70% on the Red Seal exam for construction electricians
  • Red Seal Endorsement (RSE) allows for interprovincial mobility.

Other considerations

  • Setting: both indoors or outdoors, at heights, in confined spaces, and in hazardous settings
  • Risks: shocks, industrial diseases, arc flashes, falls, and injury from repetitive motion, lifting, and kneeling
  • Works with other trades, engineers, inspectors
  • Apprentices usually earn a percentage of the journeyperson (fully qualified) rate. This percentage increases as each level of the apprenticeship program is completed.
  • Jobs in the construction industry are affected by seasonal changes and economic conditions. Work may be on a project basis. Workers should be prepared for periods of unemployment.
  • New technologies: solar power systems, wind power systems, tidal power systems, smart buildings, smart grids, electric vehicle charging stations
  • Electricians may advance to positions like foremen, instructors, project managers, superintendents, estimators, technicians, system designers, and electrical inspectors, or may start their own contracting business.
  • Everyone has fair access to participate and succeed in the apprenticeship system. Everyone who develops the necessary skills and abilities should be able to succeed in the trades and trade qualification system. Work environments in the province support women and equity-seeking communities.

By the numbers

Quick look

2,750

employed in 2016

90.7%

employed full-time

16.0%

self employed

2.0%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
98%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
43.4

median age

Compared to: All Trades and Transportation

57,925

employed in 2016

85.9%

employed full-time

11.8%

self employed

5.3%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
94.7%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
46.8

median age

Where will I likely work?

42.2%

Halifax

$49,110 median annual income
16.4%

North Shore

$42,513 median annual income
16.2%

Annapolis Valley

$39,472 median annual income
15.0%

Cape Breton

$38,433 median annual income
10.2%

Southern

$41,772 median annual income

Compared to: All NS Occupations

47.0%

Halifax

15.6%

North Shore

12.9%

Annapolis Valley

12.7%

Cape Breton

11.8%

Southern

Top Industries of Employment

82.8%

Construction

6.3%

Public administration

3.0%

Educational services

1.9%

Health care and social assistance

1.2%

Manufacturing

What is the age of Employment?

24.0%

25-34

21.0%

45-54

17.0%

35-44

16.0%

55-64

13.0%

15-24

9.0%

65+

Compared to: All Trades and Transportation

24.4%

45-54

22.1%

55-64

17.7%

35-44

17.7%

25-34

10.9%

15-24

Top levels of education

54.0%

Trade Certification

$49,878 median annual income
34.7%

College Diploma

$40,967 median annual income
5.5%

High school

$33,948 median annual income
3.3%

Bachelor

$34,509 median annual income
1.3%

Less than high school

N/A

Compared to: All Trades and Transportation

29.2%

Trade Certification

$46,494 median annual income
25.5%

High school

$31,260 median annual income
22.3%

College Diploma

$42,050 median annual income
18.7%

Less than high school

$28,319 median annual income
2.8%

Bachelor

$30,527 median annual income

Education & training

Apprenticeship - Construction Electrician

Apprenticeship Program

Apprenticeship is a structured training program leading to certification in the skilled trades. An apprenticeship combines supervised on-the-job training and experience with theoretical technical training. You find a job in your trade first and then enter into an apprenticeship agreement. You work 7,200 hours mentored by a certified journeyperson and gain the required skills and knowledge. You also take some technical courses. The Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency administers the trades training and certification system. A construction electrician apprenticeship prepares apprentices to install, operate, maintain, and repair electric equipment and systems like residential, commercial, and institutional electrical systems.

Institutions providing this program

Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency

Halifax, NS

Electrician - Pre-apprenticeship College Program

College or Trades Program

These programs preapre students to apply technical knowledge and skills to install, operate, maintain, and repair electric apparatus and systems such as residential, commercial, and industrial electric-power wiring; and DC and AC motors, controls, and electrical distribution panels. They include courses in the principles of electronics and electrical systems, wiring, power transmission, safety, industrial and household appliances, job estimation, electrical testing and inspection, and applicable codes and standards.

Institutions providing this program

Nova Scotia Community College

Various, NS

Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency

Halifax, NS

Building Trades Advancement College of Nova Scotia

Lakeside, NS

High School Diploma or Equivalent

High School Program

Adults without a high school diploma can contact the Nova Scotia School for Adult Learning (NSSAL) for tuition-free programming across the province. NSSAL oversees adult education programs in Nova Scotia. NSSAL partners with the Nova Scotia Community College, Adult High Schools, Université Sainte-Anne, and community-based learning organizations to deliver programs. NSSAL offers clear, accessible pathways from adult basic education to a high school credential or GED.

Institutions providing this program

Universite Sainte-Anne

Pointe-de-l'Église, NS

Nova Scotia Community College

Various, NS

Adult High Schools

Various, NS

Community Learning Organizations

Various, NS

Trade Qualifier

Trades Program

The Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency also offers a path to trades certification outside of a formal apprenticeship agreement with a qualified journeyperson. This option includes a set amount of required hours of related experience in the trade, passing a certification exam, and other criteria. Contact the Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency for more details.

Institutions providing this program

Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency

Halifax, NS

Employment requirements & contacts

Regulations

Construction Electrician

Compulsory Certification (Mandatory): This is a regulated designated trade in Nova Scotia. Individuals must hold a Certification of Qualification, be a registered apprentice, or hold a temporary work permit to legally work in this trade.

Regulating body:
Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency
Halifax, NS

Contacts

International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Canada
Various, NS
Construction Association of Nova Scotia
Dartmouth, NS
BuildForce Canada
Ottawa, ON
Nova Scotia Construction Sector Council
Halifax, NS
Atlantic Home Building and Renovation Sector Council
Halifax, NS
Mainland Nova Scotia Building Trades
Lakeside, NS
Merit Nova Scotia
Halifax, NS
Cape Breton Island Building and Construction Trade Council
Sydney, NS