Hard to Fill Jobs Series – Blog 1

The unemployment rate has dropped since 2008, but there is no doubt that there are lots of people without jobs and are looking hard to find one. Despite the current unemployment rate, many good jobs go unfilled. The main reason seems to be greater number of jobs in certain fields and not enough talent to fill those positions.

Each year, human resources consulting group named ManpowerGroup releases its Talent Shortage Survey, geared towards determining which professions are struggling the most to find the skilled professionals they need to carry out their business functions. 45% of employers surveyed this year reported that talent shortages resulted in a reduced ability to serve clients, while 37% reported reduced competition and productivity. Topping the list for the fifth year in a row is skilled trade workers, a group of professions that have been on the list every year since 2008, and topped it every year since 2010. Rounding out the top three are restaurant and hotel staff and sales representatives as economic recovery continues and spending on restaurant meals and vacations grows.

The areas that are facing the shortages the most are:

Skilled trade- Skilled Trades occupations are jobs that are prevalent in manufacturing and construction. Skilled trades can provide a promising career path. Electricians, are by far the largest of all the skilled trades with more than 600,000 jobs in the U.S. Also included under skilled trade are a host of production occupations such as welders and industrial machinery mechanics. Nearly 60 percent of all skilled-trade workers are employed in manufacturing, and another 17 percent work in construction.

We at America’s Job Exchange are starting a new series where we will focus on one hard to fill job each week and show you what skills it entails and other details like salary and projected growth outlook.

This week we will take a look at the job of an electrician.

Title: Electrician

Summary

  • Install, maintain, and repair electrical wiring, equipment, and fixtures. Ensure that work is in accordance with relevant codes. May install or service street lights, intercom systems, or electrical control systems.

Primary responsibilities

  • Plan layout and installation of electrical wiring, equipment, or fixtures, based on job specifications and local codes.
  • Connect wires to circuit breakers, transformers, or other components.
  • Test electrical systems or continuity of circuits in electrical wiring, equipment, or fixtures, using testing devices, such as ohmmeters, voltmeters, or oscilloscopes, to ensure compatibility and safety of system.
  • Use a variety of tools or equipment, such as power construction equipment, measuring devices, power tools, and testing equipment, such as oscilloscopes, ammeters, or test lamps.
  • Inspect electrical systems, equipment, or components to identify hazards, defects, or the need for adjustment or repair, and to ensure compliance with codes.
  • Prepare sketches or follow blueprints to determine the location of wiring or equipment and to ensure conformance to building and safety codes.
  • Diagnose malfunctioning systems, apparatus, or components, using test equipment and hand tools to locate the cause of a breakdown and correct the problem.
  • Work from ladders, scaffolds, or roofs to install, maintain, or repair electrical wiring, equipment, or fixtures.
  • Advise management on whether continued operation of equipment could be hazardous.
  • Maintain current electrician’s license or identification card to meet governmental regulations.

Skills Needed:

  • Troubleshooting — Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.
  • Repairing — Repairing machines or systems using the needed tools.
  • Active Listening — Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Judgment and Decision Making — Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • Installation — Installing equipment, machines, wiring, or programs to meet specifications.
  • Active Learning — Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
  • Complex Problem Solving — Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
  • Equipment Maintenance — Performing routine maintenance on equipment and determining when and what kind of maintenance is needed.
  • Instructing — Teaching others how to do something

 

Education

  • Post-secondary certificate

Salary

  • Median wages (2013) $24.28 hourly, $50,510 annual

Job Outlook

  • Projected growth (2012-2022): faster than average (15% to 21%).

 

 

 

 

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