Employers place a strong emphasis on essential skills in the workplace. Essential skills are used in nearly every occupation, and are seen as ¿building blocks¿ because people build on them to learn all other skills.
Each profile contains a list of example tasks that illustrate how each of the 9 essential skill is generally performed by the majority of workers in an occupation. The estimated complexity levels for each task, between 1 (basic) and 5 (advanced), may vary based on the requirements of the workplace.
Industrial electricians install, maintain, test, troubleshoot and repair industrial electrical equipment and associated electrical and electronic controls.
Working with Others
Industrial electricians work as part of a team that includes other tradespeople and professionals to install, repair and maintain industrial electrical systems and equipment. They usually work independently, co-ordinating their work with others. For large jobs, they work with a partner or crew.
Industrial electricians often receive in-house safety training to update their certifications, such as Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS), Transportation of Dangerous Goods (TDG), first aid and cardio-pulmonary resuscitation (CPR). They also receive training to safely operate equipment, such as forklifts. They learn about new equipment on-the-job by reading manuals and through hands-on experience. They obtain computer training by taking courses off-site.
All essential skills are affected by the introduction of technology in the workplace. Industrial electricians' ability to adapt to new technologies is strongly related to their skill levels across the essential skills, including reading, writing, thinking and communication skills. Technologies are transforming the ways in which workers obtain, process and communicate information, and the types of skills needed to perform in their jobs. Industrial electricians will increasingly rely on computer skills to install, troubleshoot and repair complex electrical installations. For example, industrial electricians minimize the costs for complex equipment installations by using project management software to precisely plan installation activities. Industrial electricians who are self-employed will also increasingly rely on billing and accounting software to track revenues and expenses.
Technology in the workplace further affects the complexity of tasks related to the essential skills required for this occupation. For example, the sophisticated electronic circuitry of stationary equipment has increased the complexity of wiring schematics and other diagrams. In contrast, electronic databases and keyword search functions make it easier to find information, such as specifications. Not only can workers complete documents (e.g. work orders) with speed and accuracy using specialized software applications that input data automatically, but they can also calculate costs, material requirements, conversions, electrical resistance, volumes, rates and offsets using Web-based applications and hand-held devices, such as personal digital assistants (PDAs).