Working as an Electrical Engineer in SA
There is a serious shortage of Engineers in South Africa currently. This is a great opportunity for anyone interested in this industry, as this means there are a lot of Electrical Engineering and other Engineering job opportunities. Job Mail makes the hunt for the right job easy as recruiters and employers alike advertise Electrical Engineering jobs and more on the website. Be sure to browse through the listed opportunities and apply by uploading your CV.
If you ever wondered “What is Electrical Engineering?”, then this blog is just for you. We will be taking a closer look to see what you need to be doing and what to expect.
What is Electrical Engineering?
Electrical Engineering is a term used to describe a professional who carries out the designing, development and testing of new electrical equipment. Those seeking to pursue careers in Engineering can expect their jobs to involve a lot of problem solving. Compared to other careers in Engineering, Electrical Engineering is one of the newer Engineering branches.
The answer to the question “What is Electrical Engineering?” is quite broad, but we’ll break it down for you. As a result of its relative ‘newness’, the role is much more tech oriented than most of the other Engineering branches available. As an Electrical Engineer you can expect to work on a wide variety of devices, components and systems.
If, however, you work with small electronics such as microchips or internal circuitry, then you would be regarded as an Electronic Engineer. Because of the nature of each of these fields, an Electronic Engineering salary differs from that of an Electrical Engineer.
As all careers in Engineering, being an Electrical Engineer is a very practical job. You, as an Electrical Engineer, are expected to design and develop real world solutions to problems. In addition to this, you may also be expected to conduct or write specifications to help develop electrical items. You will also have to devise methods to test performance quality, overall reliability and general durability.
Even though it may seem as if Engineering is a very narrow, specified field, this is far from reality. Careers in Electrical Engineering could include anything from Computer Engineering, signal processing, solid- state devices and mechatronics and robotics to integrated circuits, integrated nanotechnology and computer architecture and microprocessor design. Now that we have answered the question “What is Electrical Engineering?”, let us find out what the job description of an Electrical Engineer is.
Electrical Engineer Job Description
Careers in Engineering are quite interesting. With the majority of Electrical Engineering jobs you can expect to be working as part of a team which includes both technical and non-technical people. You will be working with people in marketing, sales, manufacturing, customer service and senior management. Each of these functions will have different expectations from you. It will be up to you to prioritise the expectations that are the most feasible, given the resources available to your team.
As an Electrical Engineer you can expect to have duties such as:
- Using computer design software tailor made for Engineering to create plans for projects and draw up circuit diagrams
- Carrying out relevant research to aid in creating solutions to business problems
- Testing, evaluating and modifying new electrical products
- Writing reports and documentation for the electrical components and devices you developed as an Engineer
- Analysing and interpreting large volumes of data
- Liaising with other members of your team
- Servicing and maintaining existing equipment
- Monitoring products in use in order to determine whether there is any scope for future design improvements
As an Electrical Engineer you can expect to spend a lot of time attending meetings with various members of your team. You will also need to coordinate with team members regarding tasks so that everyone has a clear understanding of what you are working on and what they need to do to make your job easier.
There is a reason why an Electrical Engineer salary is high. In order to succeed in this career you will have to have quite a few skills. Firstly, you will need to be good at both oral and written communication. In as much as careers in Engineering are technical careers, these are also careers where soft skills such as communication go a long way in ensuring that teams work well together and can function in a cohesive manner.
As an Engineer you will also need to be good at planning and have organisational skills. This means that you will need to be able to understand how to manage your time as effectively as possible. An hour of Engineering work is an hour of production that could cost a company a lot of money. You do not want to be wasting this time on issues that do not add value to your department’s bottom line. You will also need to be enthusiastic enough about Engineering to constantly seek to improve your skillset and knowledge. Most importantly, you need to be a problem solver capable of thinking of practical solutions to problems and having the ability to structure your reasoning in such a way that you can implement your solutions.
Education and registration
In order to get that high Electronic Engineering salary or Electrical Engineer salary you will need to put in the hours at school to get the required qualifications to be able to work as an Engineer.
One path you could pursue to get a job as an Electrical Engineer is by attaining a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering from a recognised academic institution. After completing your degree you will then have to acquire 3 years of working experience as a registered Candidate Engineer.
Work Environment and Salary
With Electrical Engineering jobs you can expect to work either in a production plant, a workshop, a corporate office, a laboratory or a factory site. You may find yourself working in any size company. If you are lucky enough you will find yourself working for a company with a great work culture. Whoever you work for, you can expect to travel quite a bit. If you manage to get Electrical Engineering jobs at large multinational organisations, your job may even involve travelling overseas on a somewhat regular basis.
As an Electrical Engineer it is also quite possible to work for yourself or as a consultant. However, to be safe, you should probably only think about pursuing this route after you have built up a name for yourself and have a strong professional reputation to attract regular customers.
Whichever path you choose in terms of where you work, you can expect to get paid a relatively good amount for your work. With an Electrical Engineer salary you can expect to earn anything from R33 000 to R56 000, depending on your level of experience, the company you work for and province you work in. An Electronic Engineering salary ranges from R28 000 to R48 000 depending on your level of seniority and other factors.
Waste no time and apply for Electrical Engineering jobs on Job Mail or other careers in Engineering. Upload your CV today to make yourself available for potential employers looking for Electrical Engineering candidates like you.