Advancing Career as a Journeyman Electrician in Alberta - Electrician Talk - Professional Electrical Contractors Forum
CLICK HERE AND JOIN OUR COMMUNITY TODAY, IT'S FREE!
Go Back   Electrician Talk - Professional Electrical Contractors Forum > Electrical Trade Topics > Canadian Electrical Forum


Like Tree3Likes
  • 1 Post By 99cents
  • 1 Post By FTC
  • 1 Post By MDave
Reply
Thread Tools Display Modes
Unread 01-12-2020, 04:04 PM   #1
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Alberta Canada
Posts: 19
Rewards Points: 14
Default Advancing Career as a Journeyman Electrician in Alberta

Been getting sick of the cycle of rushing to get work done then being laid off and looking for a job. Any perspective on the following courses/careers or on courses/careers not listed is greatly appreciated.

SAIT courses- Masters (pull permits), PLCs (maintenance), Design, Fire Systems, AutoCAD (project manager/estimator), Estimating, Solar PV (a difference compared to current electrical program?), Electrical engineering technologist

ACSA courses - COR or SECOR Certified

ECAA courses - PEC (don't like the points needed to stay certified)

SCC courses - Electrical Group A (safety codes officer)

Other course ideas - A Fibre Optic course, class 1 driving license, home inspector course

Career options - start a business, start a new apprenticeship (Instrumentation, HVAC, lineman), project manager, estimator, home inspector, crane technician


Sent from my LG-H831 using Tapatalk
alex.ard is offline   Reply With Quote
Join Contractor Talk

Join the #1 Electrician Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

ElectricianTalk.com - Are you a Professional Electrical Contractor? If so we invite you to join our community and see what it has to offer. Our site is specifically designed for you and it's the leading place for electricians to meet online. No homeowners asking DIY questions. Just fellow tradesmen who enjoy talking about their business, their trade, and anything else that comes up. No matter what your specialty is you'll find that ElectricianTalk.com is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally free!

Join ElectricianTalk.com - Click Here JOIN FOR FREE


Warning: The topics covered on this site include activities in which there exists the potential for serious injury or death. ElectricianTalk.com DOES NOT guarantee the accuracy or completeness of any information contained on this site. Always use proper safety precaution and reference reliable outside sources before attempting any construction or remodeling task!

Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Unread 01-13-2020, 11:05 AM   #2
Senior Member
 
FishinElectrcian's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2019
Location: West Coast Canada
Posts: 265
Rewards Points: 96
Default

Hey I hear it's friggin cold out there and the work is scarce... good luck buddy, I hate that cycle too..

FWIW I haven't been there for 15 yrs ish... I still have some friends out there, one guy got into project management and he's doing alright except that in the current work environment they are overworking him and not giving him any extra pay/salary.

Solar/PV.. No sense paying for training if you get a job with a company you will learn it there, it's not too hard, if you are trying to start a company and break in good luck. Do you like working on icy roofs? Large companies have excellent purchasing power and can get material for half the price... same issue with explosion proof..

I bid against a few companies on some small jobs, if you need $20000 in material for an ex proof job and say 10000 labour.. MegaCorp electric moves a million in parts every year and gets a 30-50 percent discount on parts, they will beat you out every time.

I think the days of PLC's are over, I set myself up on PLC / instrumentation and they started outsourcing a lot of work for the programming overseas or to kids who didn't want to get dirty that are happy with $20/hr. It never hurts to have it for maintenance and stuff like that. Most PLC's and instrumentation is out of town on different rigs and oil plants. I realized after my training that I had set myself up to work in a gas plant in some bunghole town as a maintenance electrician.

I enjoyed the courses through the ECAA and union Hall but I it don't think they ever helped me get a job.

The Masters course is excellent, both for information, the ability to work for yourself and the prestige.. If you have 20 electricians apply for a job and there's a few Masters to choose from it definitely separates you from the herd. I'm proud to say I'm one of the last of the (Dave) "Mansfield Masters". I think I got it around 2003 right before he retired from SAIT.

Look for a niche or maintenance job, U of C has full time electrical staff so does the Stampede. Stampede is 254 and you need a traveller call in the spring from 424 to get there, I think U of C is a direct hire but covered by teacher union(?). There's also electricians hired by the school board, a buddy of mine might still be working there if he's still around.. Good luck man, it's tough scraping out there when it gets lean.

Last edited by FishinElectrcian; 01-13-2020 at 11:09 AM.
FishinElectrcian is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to FishinElectrcian For This Useful Post:
alex.ard (01-13-2020)
Unread 01-13-2020, 12:59 PM   #3
Petulant Amateur
 
99cents's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Perky Nipples, Canada
Posts: 21,588
Rewards Points: 13,545
Default

Don’t start a business. The past five years have been tough. I am surviving because I am small with low overhead. I have a buddy with ten employees who is surviving because everything is bought and paid for.

Expand your search. Technical sales is an option but you will have to start entry level. I don’t know your personal situation but some people return to school full time during a slow economy.
FishinElectrcian likes this.
99cents is online now   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to 99cents For This Useful Post:
alex.ard (01-13-2020)
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Unread 01-14-2020, 09:02 AM   #4
FTC
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: Canada
Posts: 26
Rewards Points: 32
Default

What type of work do you enjoy and have the most experience in? A class 1 will give you work options, but it's completely different from electrical work. A trucking company won't care if you're an electrician.
glen1971 likes this.
FTC is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to FTC For This Useful Post:
alex.ard (01-15-2020)
Unread 01-14-2020, 01:29 PM   #5
Member
 
908Eng's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
Location: Alberta
Posts: 61
Rewards Points: 122
Default

A shameless plug for Electrical Engineering. U of A and U of C have excellent programs. 4 year bachelors degree and then 4 years working under the supervision of a P.Eng. Wages after graduation are still pretty good even as an EIT. Finding that first job is a little tricky but with your electrician experience you should have no difficulty. The actual university work and learning involved is straightforward but the quantity of work is staggering. With a moderate amount of intelligence and a lot of endurance, you should do fine.

Electrical engineering technologist (EET) through NAIT, SAIT, RDC, etc. is a reasonable option but there are limits. The education is a lot more practical, the timelines are shorter, and overall tuition is a lot lower. Career options are usually heavily focused on design rather than supervision / management. Wages, in general, can be lower than EE but this is not always the case. The path toward a formal designation or stamp is a lot more convoluted and difficult than a standard EE program through a university. Unfortunately EET formal designations / stamps are not widely understood or recognized depending on selected field. I've known a few people that finished EET, worked for a while, and returned to university for EE. It is important that any readers here recognize that I am not criticizing the EET designation. I am only highlighting some of the major differences between EET and EE.

Any questions, drop me a line. I'd be happy to chat any time.
__________________
CAVEAT: Information presented in this post does not constitute professional engineering advice.
908Eng is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to 908Eng For This Useful Post:
alex.ard (01-15-2020)
Unread 01-15-2020, 08:38 AM   #6
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Alberta Canada
Posts: 19
Rewards Points: 14
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by FTC View Post
What type of work do you enjoy and have the most experience in? A class 1 will give you work options, but it's completely different from electrical work. A trucking company won't care if you're an electrician.
I was thinking it could be useful for transitioning to being a lineman or a fireman

Sent from my LG-H831 using Tapatalk
alex.ard is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 01-15-2020, 08:51 AM   #7
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Alberta Canada
Posts: 19
Rewards Points: 14
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by 908Eng View Post
A shameless plug for Electrical Engineering. U of A and U of C have excellent programs. 4 year bachelors degree and then 4 years working under the supervision of a P.Eng. Wages after graduation are still pretty good even as an EIT. Finding that first job is a little tricky but with your electrician experience you should have no difficulty. The actual university work and learning involved is straightforward but the quantity of work is staggering. With a moderate amount of intelligence and a lot of endurance, you should do fine.



Electrical engineering technologist (EET) through NAIT, SAIT, RDC, etc. is a reasonable option but there are limits. The education is a lot more practical, the timelines are shorter, and overall tuition is a lot lower. Career options are usually heavily focused on design rather than supervision / management. Wages, in general, can be lower than EE but this is not always the case. The path toward a formal designation or stamp is a lot more convoluted and difficult than a standard EE program through a university. Unfortunately EET formal designations / stamps are not widely understood or recognized depending on selected field. I've known a few people that finished EET, worked for a while, and returned to university for EE. It is important that any readers here recognize that I am not criticizing the EET designation. I am only highlighting some of the major differences between EET and EE.



Any questions, drop me a line. I'd be happy to chat any time.
I've looked at it a few times and the few issues I have with it are that the cost is around $12000, SAIT advertises the median wage after graduating at $55000/year. I believe it takes 2 years of being a technician in training till one can be an CET, I've been watching indeed for a while and there don't appear to be many job postings for electrical engineering technologists, and there are even fewer postings for electrical engineering technologists in training or entry level positions. I am working mostly from memory here so you'll have to forgive me if I'm a bit off. How much credit does electrical engineering technologist give one towards being an electrician? And why not become an electrical engineer instead? If I could find online schooling to become an electrical engineer then I would jump on that in a second, but not having major income for 4 years is quite a commitment. Any thoughts are greatly appreciated

Sent from my LG-H831 using Tapatalk
alex.ard is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 01-15-2020, 08:58 AM   #8
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Alberta Rockies
Posts: 2,789
Rewards Points: 3,932
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by alex.ard View Post
I was thinking it could be useful for transitioning to being a lineman or a fireman

Sent from my LG-H831 using Tapatalk
I'm confused. The title is "Advancing Career as a Journeyman Electrician in Alberta", what does being a fireman have to do with it? A Lineman is different trade.

I worked construction for years and never had much time between jobs with the same company. Get to know the superintendents, foreman, etc. and keep in touch with them. As a job draws closer to an end, get in touch with the HR at your company and let them know that this one is coming to an end, and you're wondering if they have something up next. If not, get a hold of the foremen or supervisors you've worked with and let them know. So long as your name is good, you shouldn't have a problem.
To me, it sounds and looks like you are trying to distance yourself from being an electrician. In the current economy in Alberta, starting up a new company would be very risky, unless you have a known customer base, and even then... I was talking to a guy once about getting a second ticket, and he told me "You can have as many tickets as you want. You will only be good at the one you do daily. You can't keep up on changing codes, standards and technology between most of them." I'd rather be good at one, than half assed at 3..
glen1971 is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 01-15-2020, 02:45 PM   #9
Member
 
908Eng's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
Location: Alberta
Posts: 61
Rewards Points: 122
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by alex.ard View Post
I've looked at it a few times and the few issues I have with it are that the cost is around $12000, SAIT advertises the median wage after graduating at $55000/year. I believe it takes 2 years of being a technician in training till one can be an CET, I've been watching indeed for a while and there don't appear to be many job postings for electrical engineering technologists, and there are even fewer postings for electrical engineering technologists in training or entry level positions. I am working mostly from memory here so you'll have to forgive me if I'm a bit off. How much credit does electrical engineering technologist give one towards being an electrician? And why not become an electrical engineer instead?
Just because there are no positions posted, it doesn't mean that there aren't jobs available. Many firms would gladly hire a former electrician even if there are no formal posted positions, ours included. You just need to search harder to find a place to work.

Here is the APEGA salary survey which shows average salaries for engineers across the province based on their responsibilities / experience: https://www.apega.ca/docs/default-so...ber-report.pdf

Credit for previous courses between journeyman, EET and EE change all the time. I don't know if your previous experience will offer any credit toward a new degree / diploma.

Keep in mind that a CET designation is a long way from P.Eng designation. The two are definitely not the same in terms what what your are allowed to stamp. There is a P.Tech. / P.L.(eng) designation available after years of experience and even then it is somewhat limited.

Quote:
Originally Posted by alex.ard View Post
If I could find online schooling to become an electrical engineer then I would jump on that in a second, but not having major income for 4 years is quite a commitment.
That's what public transit, multiple roommates, ramen, and crippling student debt are for!
__________________
CAVEAT: Information presented in this post does not constitute professional engineering advice.
908Eng is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 01-20-2020, 08:32 PM   #10
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Alberta Canada
Posts: 19
Rewards Points: 14
Default

Ok, so what do electrical engineers actually make per year out of school? What does it usually average at? And what would you say was the cost of the schooling, not including interest? I think I would have to upgrade because my english from high school was just above 60 and my math was mid 80s without 31 because I didn't ever think I'd need it. Think it would be worth it?
alex.ard is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 01-20-2020, 08:50 PM   #11
Member
 
908Eng's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
Location: Alberta
Posts: 61
Rewards Points: 122
Default

Starting wages for an EIT (Engineer in Training) is usually $70-80K. Check the salary survey link above for more details. P-Eng is $100K and up. I think schooling may be around $10K per year (8 months) not including living expenses or textbooks. Yes, math 31 would be required. Not sure about the english.
__________________
CAVEAT: Information presented in this post does not constitute professional engineering advice.
908Eng is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 01-20-2020, 09:24 PM   #12
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Alberta Canada
Posts: 19
Rewards Points: 14
Default

I should have typed "How to advance ones career when one is a Journeyman Electrician in Alberta". I enjoy building things and being an electrician. I do not enjoy looking for work, being in charge of many others, and fine tuning my skills rather than learning new things. I feel like I have a far better understanding of electrical theory and code than those around me and I wont really move up much more than them in pay. Different careers offer a release from some of my issues. You will only be great at what you do daily but even electricians have their areas. Unless you are an inspector then you really only need to know the part of the code that's applicable to you or how to find the codes that are applicable to you. With triangles indicating all new rules, is it really that hard to read every three years and stay on top of? I mean, once one gets their masters they have to pay someone to read those triangles, so maybe for the average person it is. A dual ticket might not be as fast with the code book but there is a reason why a bunch of them make a couple more bucks an hour.

Quote:
Originally Posted by glen1971 View Post
I'm confused. The title is "Advancing Career as a Journeyman Electrician in Alberta", what does being a fireman have to do with it? A Lineman is different trade.

I worked construction for years and never had much time between jobs with the same company. Get to know the superintendents, foreman, etc. and keep in touch with them. As a job draws closer to an end, get in touch with the HR at your company and let them know that this one is coming to an end, and you're wondering if they have something up next. If not, get a hold of the foremen or supervisors you've worked with and let them know. So long as your name is good, you shouldn't have a problem.
To me, it sounds and looks like you are trying to distance yourself from being an electrician. In the current economy in Alberta, starting up a new company would be very risky, unless you have a known customer base, and even then... I was talking to a guy once about getting a second ticket, and he told me "You can have as many tickets as you want. You will only be good at the one you do daily. You can't keep up on changing codes, standards and technology between most of them." I'd rather be good at one, than half assed at 3..
alex.ard is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 01-21-2020, 12:15 AM   #13
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Alberta Rockies
Posts: 2,789
Rewards Points: 3,932
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by alex.ard View Post
I should have typed "How to advance ones career when one is a Journeyman Electrician in Alberta". I enjoy building things and being an electrician. I do not enjoy looking for work, being in charge of many others, and fine tuning my skills rather than learning new things. I feel like I have a far better understanding of electrical theory and code than those around me and I wont really move up much more than them in pay. Different careers offer a release from some of my issues. You will only be great at what you do daily but even electricians have their areas. Unless you are an inspector then you really only need to know the part of the code that's applicable to you or how to find the codes that are applicable to you. With triangles indicating all new rules, is it really that hard to read every three years and stay on top of? I mean, once one gets their masters they have to pay someone to read those triangles, so maybe for the average person it is. A dual ticket might not be as fast with the code book but there is a reason why a bunch of them make a couple more bucks an hour.
And there's lots that have a dual ticket that couldn't do the hands on part a first year apprentice could in that second trade.
glen1971 is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 01-22-2020, 09:26 PM   #14
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2018
Location: Whitecourt Alberta
Posts: 21
Rewards Points: 2
Default

Might be tough out there have you applied much for full time positions. Saw mills are a great start to learning plc and programming and they are steady work.
Instrument / electrical make your resume look good but have to find the right place for it. I
alex.ard likes this.
MDave is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to MDave For This Useful Post:
alex.ard (Yesterday)
Unread Yesterday, 11:23 PM   #15
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Alberta Canada
Posts: 19
Rewards Points: 14
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by MDave View Post
Might be tough out there have you applied much for full time positions. Saw mills are a great start to learning plc and programming and they are steady work.
Instrument / electrical make your resume look good but have to find the right place for it. I
Thank you, something I've never considered. Would they hire a jman with no mill experience? Have you any perspective on working in one? Thanks for the idea. I would like to try to better your existence in some way so, each person has two hemispheres and I would argue that each hemisphere is a different person since the corpus collosum just relays information. Tests on people with corpus collosum damage is pretty cool.

Sent from my LG-H831 using Tapatalk
alex.ard is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT -4. The time now is 08:59 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.1
vBulletin Security provided by vBSecurity v2.2.2 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2020 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2020 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
Our Pro Sites Network
ContractorTalk.com | DrywallTalk.com | HVACSite.com | PaintTalk.com | PlumbingZone.com | RoofingTalk.com