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Electrical engineer

Alternative titles for this job include

Electrical engineers design, build and maintain electrical systems, machinery and equipment.

Average salary (a year)

£20,000 Starter

to

£60,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

35 to 40 a week

You could work

evenings occasionally

How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become an electrical engineer

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • working towards this role
  • applying directly

University

You can do a degree in electrical or electronic engineering. You may also be able to get into this career with a degree in:

  • electromechanical engineering
  • building services engineering
  • applied physics
  • aeronautical engineering
  • mechatronics

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree

More Information

College

You could do a Level 4 and 5 Higher National Diploma in Electrical and Electronic Engineering at college before looking for work.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 1 or 2 A levels, a level 3 diploma or relevant experience for a level 4 or level 5 course

More Information

Apprenticeship

Apprenticeships relevant to this role include:

  • Electrical or electronic technical support engineer degree apprenticeship
  • Electro-mechanical engineer higher apprenticeship

These apprenticeships typically take between 4 and 6 years to complete.

You could start on an engineering technician apprenticeship and work your way up to qualified engineer.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship

More Information

Work

You could start as an electrical engineering technician and do training on the job to qualify as an engineer.

Direct Application

You can apply for jobs if you've got qualifications and several years' experience in a related area of engineering, for example electronics.

More Information

Further information

You can find more details about careers and training from Electrical Careers and The Institution of Engineering and Technology.

What it takes

Find out what skills you’ll use in this role.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • knowledge of engineering science and technology
  • maths knowledge
  • knowledge of computer operating systems, hardware and software
  • design skills and knowledge
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • analytical thinking skills
  • persistence and determination
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages confidently

Restrictions and Requirements

You'll need to:

  • take a colour vision test

What you’ll do

Discover the day to day tasks you’ll do in this role.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

Your day-to-day tasks will depend on the industry you're in. You could:

  • carry out feasibility studies for new technical developments
  • draw up project plans and circuit diagrams using computer-assisted engineering and design software
  • estimate costs and project timings
  • coordinate the work of technicians and craftspeople
  • test installations and systems, and analyse test data
  • make sure projects meet safety regulations
  • oversee inspection and maintenance programmes
  • attend meetings, write reports and give presentations

Working environment

You could work in a factory, at a power station, in a workshop, at a research facility or in an office.

Your working environment may be at height.

Career path and progression

Look at progression in this role and similar opportunities.

Career path and progression

You could work in different industries, from power and renewable energy to transport, construction and manufacturing.

You can improve your career prospects with incorporated or chartered engineer status. Chartered status can help you move into electrical design and project management roles, specialise in a particular field, or work as an engineering consultant. The Engineering Council have further details on how to become a chartered engineer.

You could also teach in a further education college.

Find out more about teaching in further education from Teach in further education.

Current opportunities

Find apprenticeships, courses and jobs available near you.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

Engineering Technician - Mechatronics Apprentice

  • Wage: £174.00 - £328.40 Weekly
  • Location: Telford

Courses In England

Engineering (Electrical and Electronic Engineering) - BEng (Hons) (part-time)

  • Provider: BLACKPOOL AND THE FYLDE COLLEGE
  • Start date: 13 September 2022
  • Location: Blackpool

HND ELECTRICAL & ELECTRONIC ENGINEERING (TOP UP)

  • Provider: TEC PARTNERSHIP
  • Start date: 05 September 2022
  • Location: Grimsby

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