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Career profile Electrical Drafter

Also known as CAD Operator (Computer Aided Design Operator), Design Drafter, Designer, Drafter, Electrical Designer, Electrical Drafter, Layout Designer, Line Staker, Mask Designer, Staking Engineer

Electrical Drafter

Also known as CAD Operator (Computer Aided Design Operator), Design Drafter, Designer

Interests Profile
  • Realistic
  • Conventional
  • Investigative
Pay Range
$37,020 - $101,130 (annual)
Required Skills
  • Speaking
  • Reading Comprehension
  • Active Listening
Knowledge Areas
  • Engineering and Technology
  • Design
  • Computers and Electronics
Core tasks
  • Use computer-aided drafting equipment or conventional drafting stations, technical handbooks, tables, calculators, or traditional drafting tools, such as boards, pencils, protractors, or T-squares.
  • Supervise or train other technologists, technicians, or drafters.
  • Prepare and interpret specifications, calculating weights, volumes, or stress factors.
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What does an Electrical Drafter do?

Electrical Drafters prepare wiring diagrams, circuit board assembly diagrams, and layout drawings used for the manufacture, installation, or repair of electrical equipment.

What kind of tasks does an Electrical Drafter perform regularly?

Electrical Drafters are often responsible for overseeing or executing some or all of the following tasks:

  • Draft working drawings, wiring diagrams, wiring connection specifications, or cross-sections of underground cables, as required for instructions to installation crew.
  • Assemble documentation packages and produce drawing sets to be checked by an engineer or an architect.
  • Consult with engineers to discuss or interpret design concepts, or determine requirements of detailed working drawings.
  • Review completed construction drawings and cost estimates for accuracy and conformity to standards and regulations.
  • Examine electronic schematics and supporting documents to develop, compute, and verify specifications for drafting data, such as configuration of parts, dimensions, or tolerances.
  • Confer with engineering staff and other personnel to resolve problems.
  • Draft detail and assembly drawings of design components, circuitry or printed circuit boards, using computer-assisted equipment or standard drafting techniques and devices.
  • Measure factors that affect installation and arrangement of equipment, such as distances to be spanned by wire and cable.
  • Locate files relating to specified design project in database library, load program into computer, and record completed job data.
  • Design electrical systems, such as lighting systems.
  • Draw master sketches to scale showing relation of proposed installations to existing facilities and exact specifications and dimensions.
  • Study work order requests to determine type of service, such as lighting or power, demanded by installation.
  • Explain drawings to production or construction teams and provide adjustments, as necessary.
  • Review work orders or procedural manuals and confer with vendors or design staff to resolve problems or modify design.
  • Reproduce working drawings on copy machines or trace drawings in ink.

The above responsibilities are specific to Electrical Drafters. More generally, Electrical Drafters are involved in several broader types of activities:

Getting Information
Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
Working with Computers
Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
Drafting, Laying Out, and Specifying Technical Devices, Parts, and Equipment
Providing documentation, detailed instructions, drawings, or specifications to tell others about how devices, parts, equipment, or structures are to be fabricated, constructed, assembled, modified, maintained, or used.
Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work
Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.

What is an Electrical Drafter salary?

The median salary for an Electrical Drafter is $62,100, and the average salary is $65,720. Both the median and average roughly describe the middle of the Electrical Drafter salary range, but the average is more easily affected by extremely high or low salaries.

Many Electrical Drafters earn significantly more or less than the average, due to several factors. About 10% of Electrical Drafters earn less than $37,020 per year, 25% earn less than $47,980, 75% earn less than $79,740, and 90% earn less than $101,130.

Between the years of 2020 and 2030, the number of Electrical Drafters is expected to change by 2.1%, and there should be roughly 2,300 open positions for Electrical Drafters every year.

Median annual salary
$62,100
Typical salary range
$37,020 - $101,130
Projected growth (2020 - 2030)
2.1%

What personality traits are common among Electrical Drafters?

Interests

Career interests describe a person's preferences for different types of working environments and activities. When a person's interest match the demands of an occupation, people are usually more engaged and satisfied in that role.

Compared to most occupations, those who work as an Electrical Drafter are usually higher in their Realistic, Conventional, and Investigative interests.

Electrical Drafters typically have strong Realistic interests. Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.

Also, Electrical Drafters typically have strong Conventional interests. Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.

Lastly, Electrical Drafters typically have moderate Investigative interests. Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.

Values

People differ in their values, or what is most important to them for building job satisfaction and fulfillment.

Compared to most people, those working as an Electrical Drafter tend to value Support, Achievement, and Working Conditions.

Most importantly, Electrical Drafters moderately value Support. Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees.

Second, Electrical Drafters moderately value Achievement. Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment.

Lastly, Electrical Drafters moderately value Working Conditions. Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions.

Psychological Demands

Each occupation brings its own set of psychological demands, which describe the characteristics necessary to perform the job well.

In order to perform their job successfully, people who work as Electrical Drafters must consistently demonstrate qualities such as attention to detail, dependability, and cooperation.

Below, you'll find a list of qualities typically required of Electrical Drafters, ranked by importance:

Attention to Detail
Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Dependability
Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Cooperation
Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
Initiative
Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
Persistence
Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.

What education and training do Electrical Drafters need?

Electrical Drafters often have training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.

Electrical Drafters usually need one or two years of training involving both on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with this occupation.

Educational degrees among Electrical Drafters

  • 1.5% did not complete high school or secondary school
  • 10.7% completed high school or secondary school
  • 23.6% completed some college coursework
  • 33.0% earned a Associate's degree
  • 24.1% earned a Bachelor's degree
  • 5.5% earned a Master's degree
  • 1.7% earned a doctorate or professional degree

Knowledge and expertise required by Electrical Drafters

Electrical Drafters may benefit from understanding of specialized subject areas, such as engineering and technology, design, or computers and electronics knowledge.

The list below shows several areas in which most Electrical Drafters might want to build proficiency, ranked by importance.

Engineering and Technology
Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
Design
Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
Computers and Electronics
Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
Mathematics
Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
Administrative
Knowledge of administrative and office procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and workplace terminology.

Important Abilities needed by Electrical Drafters

Electrical Drafters must develop a particular set of abilities to perform their job well. Abilities are individual capacities that influence a person's information processing, sensory perception, motor coordination, and physical strength or endurance. Individuals may naturally have certain abilities without explicit training, but most abilities can be sharpened somewhat through practice.

For example, Electrical Drafters need abilities such as oral comprehension, written comprehension, and oral expression in order to perform their job at a high level. The list below shows several important abilities for Electrical Drafters, ranked by their relative importance.

Oral Comprehension
The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
Written Comprehension
The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
Oral Expression
The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
Near Vision
The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
Written Expression
The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.

Critical Skills needed by Electrical Drafters

Skills are developed capacities that enable people to function effectively in real-world settings. Unlike abilities, skills are typically easier to build through practice and experience. Skills influence effectiveness in areas such as learning, working with others, design, troubleshooting, and more.

Electrical Drafters frequently use skills like speaking, reading comprehension, and active listening to perform their job effectively. The list below shows several critical skills for Electrical Drafters, ranked by their relative importance.

Speaking
Talking to others to convey information effectively.
Reading Comprehension
Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work-related documents.
Active Listening
Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
Critical Thinking
Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions, or approaches to problems.
Writing
Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

What is the source of this information?

The information provided on this page is adapted from data and descriptions published by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration under the CC BY 4.0 license. TraitLab has modified some information for ease of use and reading, and the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment, and Training Administration has not approved, endorsed, or tested these modifications.

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