CAREER GUIDE FOR ELECTRICAL POWER-LINE INSTALLER & REPAIRER

SOC Code: 49-9051

Pay Band(s): 3 and 4 (Salary Structure)

Standard Occupational Description: Install or repair cables or wires used in electrical power or distribution systems. May erect poles and light or heavy duty transmission towers.

Electrical Power-Line Installer & Repairer positions in the Commonwealth are assigned to the following Roles in the Building Trades Career Group:

Trades Technician III

Trades Technician IV

While Electrical Power-Line Installer & Repairers within the Commonwealth are all located within the Building Trades Career Group, individuals may want to pursue other opportunities within the Commonwealth depending upon individual training, education, knowledge, skills, abilities, and interests.   

Other Career Group(s) that may be of interest are:

Electronics

Equipment Service and Repair

Engineering Technology

SKILLS, KNOWLEDGE, ABILITIES AND TASKS

(Technical and Functional Expertise)

Skills
Note: The technical and functional skills listed below are based on general occupational qualifications for Electrical Power-Line Installer & Repairers commonly recognized by most employers.  Typically, you will not be required to have all of the skills listed to be a successful performer.  Recruitment and selection standards for an individual state job must be based on the specific knowledge, skills, and abilities for that job as indicated in the job announcement and job description in the Employee Work Profile.

  1. Installing equipment, machines, wiring, or programs to meet specifications.
  2. Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.
  3. Performing routine maintenance on equipment and determining when and what kind of maintenance is needed.
  4. Repairing machines or systems using the needed tools.
  5. Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
  6. Determining the kind of tools and equipment needed to do a job.
  7. Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  8. Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  9. Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
  10. Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.

Knowledge
Note: The technical and functional knowledge statements listed below are based on general occupational qualifications for Electrical Power-Line Installer & Repairers commonly recognized by most employers.  Typically, you will not be required to have all of the knowledge listed to be a successful performer.  Recruitment and selection standards for an individual state job must be based on the specific knowledge, skills, and abilities for that job as indicated in the job announcement and job description in the Employee Work Profile.

The Knowledge of:

  1. Machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
  2. Materials, methods, and the tools involved in the construction or repair of houses, buildings, or other structures such as highways and roads.
  3. Principles and methods for moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road, including the relative costs and benefits.
  4. Relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.

Abilities
Note: The technical and functional abilities listed below are based on general occupational qualifications for Electrical Power-Line Installer & Repairers commonly recognized by most employers.  Typically, you will not be required to have all of the abilities listed to be a successful performer.  Recruitment and selection standards for an individual state job must be based on the specific knowledge, skills, and abilities for that job as indicated in the job announcement and job description in the Employee Work Profile.

The Ability to:

  1. Quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
  2. Coordinate two or more limbs (for example, two arms, two legs, or one leg and one arm) while sitting, standing, or lying down. It does not involve performing the activities while the whole body is in motion.
  3. Arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
  4. Imagine how something will look after it is moved around or when its parts are moved or rearranged.
  5. Make precisely coordinated movements of the fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble very small objects.
  6. Keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.
  7. Bend, stretch, twist, or reach with your body, arms, and/or legs.
  8. Tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  9. Quickly and accurately compare similarities and differences among sets of letters, numbers, objects, pictures, or patterns. The things to be compared may be presented at the same time or one after the other. This ability also includes comparing a presented object with a remembered object.
  10. See details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).

Tasks
Note:  The following is a list of sample tasks typically performed by Electrical Power-Line Installer & Repairers.  Employees in this occupation will not necessarily perform all of the tasks listed. 

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  1. Adhere to safety practices and procedures, such as checking equipment regularly and erecting barriers around work areas.
  2. Attach crossarms, insulators, and auxiliary equipment to poles prior to installing them.
  3. Clean, tin, and splice corresponding conductors by twisting ends together or by joining ends with metal clamps and soldering connections.
  4. Climb poles or use truck-mounted buckets to access equipment.
  5. Cut and peel lead sheathing and insulation from defective or newly installed cables and conduits prior to splicing.
  6. Identify defective sectionalizing devices, circuit breakers, fuses, voltage regulators, transformers, switches, relays, or wiring, using wiring diagrams and electrical-testing instruments.
  7. Inspect and test power lines and auxiliary equipment to locate and identify problems, using reading and testing instruments.
  8. Install, maintain, and repair electrical distribution and transmission systems, including conduits, cables, wires, and related equipment such as transformers, circuit breakers, and switches.
  9. Lay underground cable directly in trenches, or string it through conduit running through the trenches.
  10. Open switches or attach grounding devices in order to remove electrical hazards from disturbed or fallen lines or to facilitate repairs.

INTERESTED?

Like people, occupations have traits or characteristics.  These characteristics give important clues about the nature of the work and work environment, and give you an opportunity to match your own personal interests to a specific occupation.  When you choose a job in an occupation that matches your own interests you have taken an important step in planning a successful and rewarding career.

The occupation of Electrical Power-Line Installer & Repairer has Realistic characteristics as described below:

Realistic — 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.

LICENSURE, REGISTRATION, OR CERTIFICATION REQUIREMENTS

Generally this is not required for Electrical Power-Line Installer & Repairer positions in state government.

EDUCATIONAL, TRAINING, AND LEARNING OPPORTUNITIES 

The Department of Labor provides the following information:

Line installers, or line erectors, install new lines by constructing utility poles, towers, and underground trenches to carry the wires and cables.

Line installers and repairers must climb and maintain their balance while working on poles and towers. They lift equipment and work in a variety of positions, such as stooping or kneeling. Their work often requires that they drive utility vehicles, travel long distances, and work outdoors under a variety of weather conditions.

Line installers and repairers encounter serious hazards on their jobs and must follow safety procedures to minimize potential danger.

Line installers and repairers are trained on the job, and employers require at least a high school diploma. Employers also prefer a technical knowledge of electricity, electronics, and experience obtained through vocational/technical programs, community colleges, or the Armed Forces.

Electrical line installers and repairers typically complete formal apprenticeships or employer training programs. These are sometimes administered jointly by the employer and the union representing the workers.

The six recognized apprenticeable specialties associated with this occupation are:
Cable Installer-Repairer; Cable Splicer; Line Erector; Line Maintainer; Line Repairer; Trouble Shooter II.

In Virginia, the Apprenticeship Division of the Virginia Department of Labor and Industry (DOLI) administers apprenticeship programs.   More information on these programs is available on DOLI's web site: http://www.dli.state.va.us/

Entry-level line installers may be hired as ground workers, helpers, or tree trimmers, who clear branches from telephone and power lines. These workers may advance to positions stringing cable and performing service installations. With experience, they may advance to more sophisticated maintenance and repair positions responsible for increasingly larger portions of the network. Promotion to supervisory or training positions also is possible, but more advanced supervisory positions often require a college diploma.

Listings of Virginia institutions offering these educational programs in electrical, electronic and communication technology for technicians may be found on the State Council of Higher Education's web site: http://research.schev.edu/degreeinventory/

COMMONWEALTH COMPETENCIES

Competencies are a set of identified behaviors, knowledge, skills, and abilities that directly and positively impact the success of employees and the organization. Competencies can be observed and measured.  When consistently demonstrated, competencies make employees particularly effective in their work.  Competencies help lay out a road map to career success.  You can use the Commonwealth Competencies to help improve your individual performance by adopting behaviors that make high performing employees successful in their jobs. In this way, you can use the Commonwealth Competencies for your further professional development.

The Commonwealth Competencies are:

  1. Technical and Functional Expertise
  2. Understanding the Business     
  3. Achieving Results
  4. Serving the Customer
  5. Teamwork
  6. Interpersonal and Communication Skills
  7. Leadership and Personal Effectiveness

The above competencies may be applied to employees throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia.  They can be rank-ordered by agencies and hiring managers to represent the needs of a specific job.  The rank ordering will change depending upon the occupation, an organization's priorities, the actual job requirements, and the supervisor's preferences. 

Career success is both about what you do (applying your technical knowledge, skills, and ability) and how you do it (the consistent behaviors you demonstrate and choose to use) while interacting and communicating with others.  Hopefully, by studying the Commonwealth competencies, identifying your developmental opportunities, and working to refine your own competence, you can take charge of your career!

For additional information about the Commonwealth Competencies go to: http://jobs.state.va.us/cc_planningctr.htm.  For the competencies, we first list the competencies and then define each.  Finally, we list competency indicators; to describe what successful performance looks like. 

COMMONWEALTH CAREER PATH

Career opportunities in the Commonwealth are not limited to moving “up” to the next highest role and pay band, changing positions, or to becoming a supervisor.  That's because most roles describe a broad group of occupationally related positions that perform a range of work that requires increased knowledge and skills.  For that reason, Commonwealth roles describe the career paths within the same or higher-level role for the same or different Career Group.  The broad salary range and the Commonwealth's pay practices provide flexibility in recognizing career development and advancement. (Salary Structure

For example: Electrical Power-Line Installer & Repairer

PAY BAND

PRACTITIONER ROLES

 

PAY BAND

MANAGER ROLES

3

Trades Technician III

 

5

Trades Manager I

4

Trades Technician IV

 

6

Trades Manager II

         

Sample Career Path

Trades Technician III

The Trades Technician III role provides career tracks for Electrical Power-Line Installer & Repairer performing a skilled trade in a specialty area whose work ranges from journey level technician to lead. Some employees may supervise a small crew/staff.

Trades Technician IV

The Trades Technician IV role provides career tracks for the Electrical Power-Line Installer & Repairer whose responsibilities range from the expert technicians to first line supervisors of trades technicians in one or more specialty areas. The expert trades technician provides guidance to other technicians or works on a "multi-trade" team requiring specialized skills and knowledge in several trades areas.

Trades Manager I

The Trades Manager I role provides career tracks for managers who responsibilities range from assisting in the planning and direction of a buildings and grounds program to managing a comprehensive building and grounds program for facilities such as a training center, rehabilitation center, or hospital. Areas managed may include a power plant, buildings and mechanical maintenance, ground maintenance, housekeeping and related services.

Trades Manager II

The Trades Manager II role provides career tracks for managers who plan and direct a buildings and grounds program at a state agency or institution having multiple facilities characterized by a large total resident and staff population engaged in highly diversified and decentralized activities.

ADDITIONAL OCCUPATIONAL INFORMATION CAN BE FOUND AT: 

O*NET (Occupational Information Network) 

http://online.onetcenter.org/gen_search_page

Virginia Employment Commission 

http://www.alex.vec.state.va.us/

Career One Stop

  http://www.careeronestop.org/

Virginia Career Resource Network

 http://www.vacrn.net/

Communications Workers of America

http://www.cwa-union.org/

International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers

http://www.ibew.org/

Utility Workers Union of America

http://www.uwua.org/

Society of Cable Telecommunications Engineers

 http://www.scte.org