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Electrical Engineer

Electrical engineers specify, design, construct, analyze and test electrical and electronic components and systems, and are responsible for their safe operation.

  • Avg. Salary $104,815.00
  • Avg. Wage $51.07
  • Minimum Education 4 years post-secondary
  • Outlook avg
  • Employed 4,300
  • In Demand Lower
Also Known As

Communications Engineer, Control Systems Engineer, Digital Systems Engineer, Electronics Engineer, Instrumentation Engineer, Professional Engineer, Engineer

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

53%
53%
Average Wage
Starting
Overall
Top
  • Certification Provincially Regulated
  • Strength Required Lift up to 10 kg
NOC & Interest Codes
The Electrical Engineer is part of the following larger National Occupational Classification (NOC).
Electrical and Electronics Engineers
NOC code: 2133
INNOVATIVE

Interest in synthesizing information to develop maintenance and operating standards and to investigate failures

OBJECTIVE

Interest in precision working to design electrical and electronic circuits, components, systems and equipment

DIRECTIVE

Interest in supervising technicians, technologists, programmers, analysts and other engineers; and in overseeing the installation, modification, testing and operation of systems and equipment

Reading Interest Codes
A Quick Guide

The interest code helps you figure out if you’d like to work in a particular occupation. 
It’s based on the Canadian Work Preference Inventory (CWPI), which measures 5 occupational interests: Directive, Innovative, Methodical, Objective and Social.

Each set of 3 interest codes is listed in order of importance.

A code in capital letters means it’s a strong fit for the occupation.

A code in all lowercase letters means the fit is weaker.

Learn More

Duties
Updated Dec 19, 2016

Electrical engineers work with systems that generate, transmit, distribute, store, control or use electromagnetic energy or electrically coded information. They may be involved in the development, manufacture or application of a wide variety of electrical and electronic devices, circuits, systems, products and equipment. They must apply and comply with known standards and may be involved in the development of standards.

Electrical engineers may specialize in:

  • biomedical engineering (for more information, see the Biomedical Engineer occupational profile)
  • communications engineering (for example, the compression, transmission, routing and reception of multimedia or digital data information on the internet or mobile phones)
  • computer engineering (for more information, see the Computer Engineer and Software Engineer occupational profiles)
  • control systems engineering (for example, the control of chemical processes such as those in petroleum extraction, refining and delivery)
  • digital systems engineering (for example, the development of hardware systems for communications, process control, computers and signal processors)
  • electronic materials and nanotechnology (for example, the integration of semiconductor devices and nanoscale sensors)
  • electronics engineering (for example, design of integrated circuits for electronic equipment used in communication or automotive systems)
  • electromagnetics and photonics (for example, radio frequency antennae and laser applications)
  • power systems engineering (the generation, transmission and distribution of electrical energy).

In each of these fields, electrical engineers may further specialize in one or more of the following:

  • maintaining and trouble shooting existing systems
  • conducting research
  • specifying, designing, implementing and testing products and systems
  • designing and simulating electronic product prototypes (models)
  • designing manufacturing processes
  • developing test and quality control procedures to ensure that products meet quality specifications and safety standards.

In addition to their technical responsibilities, electrical engineers often are required to:

  • study design proposals, write reports and make recommendations regarding the specification, design, development, manufacture, testing or application of products and systems.
  • prepare contract documents such as drawings and specifications for project construction.
  • supervise and co-ordinate the work of others.

They must constantly update their knowledge and skills to keep up with advances in technology.

Working Conditions
Updated Dec 19, 2016

Electrical engineers generally work in an office environment but also may travel to operating, construction or infrastructure sites or manufacturing facilities. They may work long hours and experience a great deal of pressure to meet deadlines and design standards. In rare circumstances, electrical engineers may be exposed to chemical gasses or work in severe climate conditions.

  • Strength Required Lift up to 10 kg
Skills & Abilities
Updated Dec 19, 2016

Electrical engineers need the following characteristics:

  • natural curiosity and good observation skills
  • analytical and problem solving skills
  • a strong aptitude for mathematics and science
  • the ability to pay close attention to details
  • persistence
  • good organization and time management skills
  • excellent oral and written communication skills
  • the ability to work effectively in teams of people from varied backgrounds.

Electrical engineers should be committed to staying up to date with technological innovations.

They should enjoy being innovative, doing work that requires precision, working independently and making decisions.

Educational Requirements
Updated Dec 19, 2016

The minimum education requirement for electrical engineers is a four year bachelor's degree in electrical engineering.


Required Education

The following schools offer programs and courses that meet this occupation’s educational requirements. Other eligible programs and courses may be available.


Related Education

The following schools offer programs or courses that are related to this occupation but are not required to enter the field.

Grande Prairie Regional College

Grant MacEwan University

Mount Royal University

For a broad list of programs and courses that may be related to this occupation try searching using keywords.

Certification Requirements
Updated Dec 19, 2016

Engineer

Professional Engineers design, construct, evaluate, advise, monitor and report on the performance of materials, equipment, systems, works, processes and structures.

Legislation

Under Alberta's Engineering and Geoscience Professions Act, you must be a registered member of the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Alberta (APEGA) to practice as a professional engineer. You do not have to be registered if you work under the direct supervision of a professional engineer and do not call yourself a professional engineer or use the word engineer in your job title.

What You Need

Registration as a Professional Engineer requires: (1) a 4-year bachelor's degree in a recognized engineering program and at least 4 years of acceptable work experience under the supervision of a Professional Engineer, or an equivalent combination of education and experience, (2) a minimum of 3 acceptable references and (3) successful completion of an approved examination in law, ethics and professionalism. A new Provisional Member category has been introduced. For official, detailed information about registration requirements, visit APEGA's website or contact APEGA.

Working in Alberta

Engineers who are registered and in good standing with a regulatory organization elsewhere in Canada may be eligible for registration in Alberta if registered engineers in the 2 jurisdictions have similar responsibilities and competencies. For more information, see What if I am already certified in another province or territory? and the Alberta regulatory authority (below).

To find more information on the certification process for internationally educated engineers, see Professional Engineer Licensing Process on AlbertaCanada.com.

Contact Details

Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Alberta
1500 Scotia One, 10060 Jasper Avenue
Edmonton, Alberta
Canada T5J 4A2
Phone number: 780-426-3990
Toll-free phone number (within North America): 1-800-661-7020
Fax: 780-426-1877
Email: email@apega.ca
Website: www.apega.ca

Employment & Advancement
Updated Dec 19, 2016

Average occupational growth is expected in Alberta for 2016 to 2020. Job openings are a result of employment turnover and newly created positions.

Electrical engineers may be employed by:

  • consulting firms
  • electrical utilities
  • construction companies
  • governments
  • manufacturers of electrical equipment
  • resource extraction and processing companies
  • transportation companies
  • communication companies (including telecommunication companies)
  • health authorities
  • universities and other research institutions.

Many engineers spend their entire careers in technical jobs. Some engineers become managers, administrators or sales representatives(for more information, see the Technical Sales Representative occupational profile).

Electrical engineers are part of the larger 2011 National Occupational Classification 2133: Electrical and electronics engineers. In Alberta, 78% of people employed in this classification in the following industries:

The employment outlook in this occupation will be influenced by a wide variety of factors including:

  • trends and events affecting overall employment (especially in the industries listed above)
  • location in Alberta
  • employment turnover (work opportunities generated by people leaving existing positions)
  • occupational growth (work opportunities resulting from the creation of new positions that never existed before)
  • size of the occupation.

Over 6,700 Albertans are employed in the Electrical and electronic engineers occupational group. This group is expected to have an average annual growth of 1.7% from 2016 to 2020. As a result, 114 new positions are forecast to be created each year, in addition to job openings created by employment turnover. Note: As electrical engineers form only a part of this larger occupational group, only some of these newly created positions will be for electrical engineers.

Employment turnover is expected to increase as members of the baby boom generation retire over the next few years.

Wage & Salary
Updated Dec 19, 2016

Electrical and electronics engineers
NOC code: 2133

Survey Methodology

Survey Analysis

Overall Wage Details
Average Wage
Average Salary
Hours Per Week

Hourly Wage
For full-time and part-time employees
  • Low
  • High
  • Average
  • Median
Starting
Overall
Top
Wages* Low (5th percentile) High (95th percentile) Average Median
Starting $20.00 $61.54 $34.95 $34.53
Overall $35.26 $77.12 $51.07 $50.10
Top $43.99 $94.95 $75.27 $72.12

Swipe left and right to view all data. Scroll left and right to view all data.

* All wage estimates are hourly except where otherwise indicated. Wages and salaries do not include overtime hours, tips, benefits, profit shares, bonuses (unrelated to production) and other forms of compensation.

B: Good Reliability
Data Reliability Code Definition

Good Reliability, represents a CV of between 6.01% and 15.00% and/or fewer than 30 survey observations and/or if survey observations represent less than 50% of all estimated employment for the occupation.


Industry Information
Oil & Gas Extraction
Public Administration
ALBERTA, ALL INDUSTRIES
Construction
Professional, Scientific & Technical Services
Manufacturing

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

53%
53%

Recruiting Employers that Experienced Hiring Difficulties

32%
32%

Employers with Unfilled Vacancies of over 4 Months

3%
3%

2015 Vacancy Rate

N/A
Related High School Subjects
  • English Language Arts
  • Mathematics
  • Science
    • Chemistry
    • Physics
  • Media, Design and Communication Arts
    • Design Studies
  • Natural Resources
    • Environmental Stewardship
  • Trades, Manufacturing and Transportation
    • Electro-Technologies
Related Post-Secondary Field of Study
  • Engineering, Architecture and Related Studies
Other Sources of Information
Updated Dec 19, 2016

Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Alberta (APEGA) website: www.apega.ca

For more information on career planning, education and jobs, visit the Alberta Learning Information Service (ALIS) website, call the Alberta Career Information Hotline toll-free at 1-800-661-3753 or 780-422-4266 in Edmonton, or visit an Alberta Works Centre near you.

Updated Mar 20, 2014. The information contained in this profile is current as of the dates shown. Salary, employment outlook and educational program information may change without notice. It is advised that you confirm this information before making any career decisions.

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