Between now and 2029, the need for electricians is expected to increase by 8%. Industry experts observe that unless the field attracts new talent, labor shortages will intensify. Who will light the way as baby boomers retire?
Solid Careers: College Not Necessary
That’s the messaging Luiza Mills, VP of human resources for Interstate Electrical Services in New England, believes the field needs to share widely to draw the next generation of electricians and other skilled tradespeople forward. Here’s the four point action strategy she shared with Construction Dive:
- Boosting awareness: The electrical trade offers a challenging, rewarding, debt-free career, particularly with higher education debt exceeding $1.5 billion in the US. Still, a “perception gap” needs to be overcome. While the trades have evolved and modernized, public perception of them has not. It’s up to all of us to spread the word in both professional and personal interactions that the trades are a smart and viable option.
- Working with schools: Focusing on community and youth outreach is key. We make visiting middle schools, high schools and vocational tech schools a top priority, working to expose young people to all facets of the modern electrical trade. We’ve found the students are fascinated with the various facets of the trade, spanning from a traditional electrician role, to 4D modeling, to advanced design software.
- Offering apprenticeships:Internship and co-op programs allow students to work on site to see how their interests line up with the industry today. Offering opportunities to work in every department, ranging from finance to software detailing gives interns and students a view into the broad range of positions available in the trades. Apprenticeships offer pay and benefits, along with school/tuition assistance and invaluable on-the-job training.
- Embracing diversity: While the electrical trade may have been traditionally overwhelmingly white and male, today we have a much more diverse workforce taking shape that increasingly includes women. An important development that is changing the playing field for electricians is the adoption of lean manufacturing methods and the increasing use of prefabrication.
Electrician’s License Bond?
Getting bonded is a prerequisite on the path to becoming a licensed, electrician in most areas of the country. An electrician’s license bond, sometimes referred to as an electrical contractor bond, is a type of surety bond—it serves as a guarantee to the public that responsibilities will be carried out in accordance with all applicable regulations. It’s easy, affordable and quick to obtain an electrician’s license bond from Colonial Surety Company, a leading, direct, national provider.
Interesting To Know
The median annual wage for electricians was $56,180 in May 2019. Business is brisk. Consider the demand for lighting, and lighting innovation work alone. The U.S. Department of Energy estimates each of the nation’s 128 million households has, on average, 40 lamp sockets—that’s more than 5 billion lamps in U.S. homes. Electrical Contractor Magazine has observed increased demand for service related to networked lighting, color tunable LED lighting, wireless controls and “germicidal light sources” such as UV-C. From sanitizing light, to electric cars, to harnessing solar energy and more, electricians are often at the forefront of important social innovation. For example, advances in lighting are anticipated to dramatically improve health and quality of life for the elderly in the years ahead.
Lighting the Way: IBond® Services
With a portfolio of over 4,000 license and permit bonds available instantly , Colonial Surety’s here to help construction contractors in every trade: electrical, HVAC, plumbing, gutters, driveways—and more. Whatever you are wiring, building, renovating or repairing, Colonial’s got the bond you need—and we make it easy and affordable to obtain. You can even do it right now, from your mobile. In just a few clicks you’ll:
- Get a quote online.
- Fill out your information.
- Enter your payment method.
- Print or e-file your bond, instantly, from anywhere.
Colonial Surety Company is built on reliability, affordability and dependability. Founded in 1930, we have proven long-term financial stability; we’re licensed in every single state in the U.S.; we are listed by the U.S. Treasury as an approved surety; and we’re rated “A” Excellent by A.M. Best.