Do today’s electricians have the training to handle your facilities’ high-tech systems?

by Brianna Crandall — January 5, 2018 — Klein Tools, a family-owned and operated designer, developer and manufacturer of professional-grade hand tools for over 160 years, recently announced results from its annual “State of the Industry” survey, with input from more than 600 union and non-union electricians. Survey results suggest that electricians are working more than ever and are not widely concerned about new technology impacting their job security.

Klein Tools electricians infographic

Klein Tools’ State of the Industry survey results suggest that electricians are working more than ever and are not widely concerned about new technology impacting their job security. Click on image to enlarge.

Electricians remain in high demand

Results showed that more than two-fifths of electricians, 42%, are working more often compared to a year ago, which is a significant increase from previous years — 23% in 2015 and 32% in 2016. In 2017, electricians saw increases in the amount of work in a variety of industries including new home construction, office buildings, commercial properties other than office buildings, and retrofitting in homes. The most noticeable change continues to be the widespread increase in high-tech installations:

  • 56% of electricians saw an increase in the amount of work in high-tech installations. More than half, 55%, are seeing more smart or connected homes in the residential area — up from 48% in 2016.
  • Among electricians who see smart/connected homes as a residential trend, 30% of their new home construction work is on smart/connected homes.
  • Three in five electricians carried out more high-tech installations in commercial buildings versus homes, and seven in ten electricians saw more smart offices in commercial buildings than five years ago.

Mark Klein, co-president of Klein Tools, remarked:

It is no surprise that there is a high demand for skilled electricians in the residential and commercial space. Given the growing shortage of skilled trade professionals, we expect that demand to continue to rise. High-tech installations in the housing and commercial construction will only continue to increase, and if we cannot fill these positions with skilled workers, businesses and homeowners will see more delayed projects and higher home prices.

Electricians not concerned about job security

As high-tech installations continue to grow in popularity, this year’s survey found that electricians are not widely concerned about technology impacting their job security.

  • Less than one-fifth of electricians are very concerned about technology impacting their job security.
  • Seven in ten electricians experiencing the smart/connected home trend believe they have the necessary tools to install electrical equipment in smart/connected homes most or all of the time.

Klein continued:

As technology continues to evolve in new construction homes and office buildings, electricians are dealing with higher demands, more complex systems, and advanced high-tech installations. Even on the most complex and challenging job sites, electricians are still going to be needed to get the job done. Many young electricians entering the industry enjoy the challenges and tech-dependency of smart homes and want to experience working on the newest technology.

Klein Tools knows how important ongoing training programs are to staying up-to-date on cutting-edge technologies, and partners with various organizations to provide internships and apprentice programs to those entering the industry to keep up with the demand of complex installations. As electricians continue to adapt to a more high-tech industry, it is important that we continue to give them the training and tools needed to manage the most difficult tasks.

More than 600 union (40%) and non-union (60%) electricians were surveyed online for the Klein Tools State of the Industry survey by Russell Research, an independent survey research firm.

For more information, visit the Klein Tools Web site.