Electrician Helper

Construction, Installation, Maintenance, and Repair

Quick Links
    Add a header to begin generating the table of contents
    Scroll to Top


    Required Education, Credentials, and Licenses

    • High school diploma or GED

    Preferred Education and Credentials

    • Driver’s license


    • Detail-oriented
    • Work area maintenance
    • Troubleshooting
    • Manual dexterity
    • Color vision
    • Physical abilities (flexibility, lift up to 50 pounds) 
    • Interpret electrical symbols and diagrams
    • Teamwork skills
    • Communication


    Electrician helpers assist master electricians by performing supportive tasks in the installation, maintenance, and repair of systems that use and transmit electricity, including indoor wiring and power and control systems that are part of HVAC/R operations.

    Electricians and electrician helpers work on specific parts of HVAC/R systems rather than installing, maintaining, and repairing them in their entirety. The role of specialized tradespeople is more common in union jobs than in non-union jobs. As property owners strive to increase energy efficiency and reduce their carbon footprint, electricians and electrician helpers need to be increasingly knowledgeable about the wiring materials and configurations used in electricity-based HVAC/R systems (e.g., heat pumps, heat recovery systems), building automation systems, and smart home devices.

    Electrician helpers generally work under the supervision of an experienced electrician and provide assistance by cleaning and preparing the workspace, tools, and electrical equipment needed for the job. Helpers’ responsibilities include measuring and cutting wires and examining wires for loose connections, so it is necessary to be detail-oriented. Knowledge of electrical symbols and being able to read diagrams is important, as helpers may assist in testing electrical systems, troubleshooting problems, and repairing or replacing components such as bulbs, fuses, switches, and sockets.

    Electrician helpers need the strength to move materials weighing up to 50 pounds, flexibility to work in cramped areas, and the ability to climb ladders and work at elevated heights. It is critical that electrician helpers have good color vision to easily differentiate wires, and they should possess excellent manual dexterity to safely work with their hands and use tools.

    Strong written and verbal communication skills are necessary to work as an electrician helper. Helpers need to document the materials and time that they use to complete tasks, and they must be able to follow instructions that they read in equipment manuals or are spoken by their supervisor. Since electrician helpers receive on-the-job training and work alongside skilled electricians, listening and teamwork skills are needed to build an effective work relationship.

    Electrician helpers are typically employed at worksites on a full-time basis, and they may often be on call for emergencies. Overtime shifts and work schedules can include evenings and weekends.

    Job Outlook

    According to the New York State Department of Labor, there are approximately 4,400 electrician helpers in New York State. They project this occupation to grow by 950 jobs between 2020 and 2030, and employment prospects are described as favorable.

    Entering the Field

    Workers typically need to have a high school diploma or GED to work as an electrician helper. It is not necessary to have prior experience in the field, and on-the-job training teaches electrician helpers the skills needed to perform the job within a few weeks. Helpers who decide to advance their careers by becoming a journey-level electrician may eventually choose to apply to an apprenticeship program, in which they receive classroom instruction and additional hands-on training. 

    Employers may require electrician helpers to have a driver’s license, so they can travel from one worksite to another. Helpers do not usually need other licenses or certifications, but workers who do choose to advance and become a journeyperson may eventually need to be licensed by local government authorities to work as a master tradesperson.

    Check local government requirements for more information regarding working in the electrical trades.


    In New York State, the median wage for electrician helpers is approximately $48,400. Entry-level workers earn about $36,900 and experienced workers earn about $54,600.

    Annual Wage (Q1 2023 dollars, rounded to 100s) – Statewide and by Labor Market Region

    New York State$36,900 $48,400 $54,600
    Capital Region$33,100 $38,300 $41,300
    Central New York$32,900 $39,000 $43,200
    Finger Lakes$32,000 $38,400 $42,300
    Hudson Valley$37,100 $46,400 $51,100
    Long Island$37,600 $45,700 $49,200
    Mohawk ValleyN/AN/AN/A
    New York City$41,400 $53,400 $59,200
    North CountryN/AN/AN/A
    Southern Tier$32,100 $37,300 $40,100
    Western New York$32,200 $38,600 $42,100

    Source: New York State Department of Labor, Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics Survey, SOC Code 47-3013 (Helpers-Electricians); N/A denotes wage data that is not available.


    Construction contractors are the main employer of electrician helpers, particularly those that focus on building equipment used in electrical and HVAC/R systems and whose work can include the wiring of HVAC/R systems to energy sources and automated building control systems. Government agencies also hire workers in this occupation.

    The few job openings for electrician helpers that were posted online across New York State in 2022 were advertised with the job titles electrician helper or electrical helper. Those job titles and keywords such as “electrical work,” “wiring,” “HVAC,” or “heating” can be used when searching job advertisements online to help identify opportunities in the HVAC/R field to work as an electrician helper.

    Note: construction jobs are often underrepresented in online job ads. Check with local construction businesses and local union or government websites for additional opportunities to gain employment as an electrician helper.

    Labor Unions

    The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers is affiliated with 16 local chapters whose union members work as electricians focused on electrical work inside buildings and telecommunications. Labor market regions throughout New York State have more than one active local chapter – almost all have apprenticeship programs to which electrician helpers who want to become a skilled tradesperson could apply. Visit union websites to see which unions are active in various parts of the state and to learn more about the training opportunities they offer. 

    Workers employed by New York State or local governments may also belong to unions. Check with local communities to see if there are public unions for electricians and electrician helpers.

    Capital Region

    Central New York

    Finger Lakes

    Hudson Valley

    Long Island

    Mohawk Valley

    New York City

    North Country

    Southern Tier

    Western New York

    Education and Training Programs

    Schools across New York offer certificates and/or associate degrees that prepare people to work with electrical systems, though being an electrician helper does not necessarily require formal education beyond a high school diploma or GED. In addition to the programs listed below, local colleges may offer training in the electrical trade through adult continuing education or career training departments. Check with schools directly or see which schools partner with ed2go, an online continuing education provider that includes courses for electrical technicians and residential electricians. Electrician helpers who want to advance their career in the HVAC/R field may want to enroll in training courses specific to emerging clean energy technologies, which are offered by manufacturers or distributors of those types of equipment, including heat pumps and automated controls.

    Educational InstitutionDepartmentCertificateAssociateBachelorMasterPhD
    Capital Region
    Hudson Valley Community CollegeApplied TechnologiesNoYesNoNoNo
    Central New York
    Onondaga Community CollegeSchool of Computing & Applied TechnologiesNoYesNoNoNo
    Mohawk Valley
    Mohawk Valley Community CollegeSchool of STEMNoYesNoNoNo
    New York City
    Apex Technical SchoolElectrical School ClassesYesNoNoNoNo
    Berk Trade and Business SchoolAcademics YesNoNoNoNo
    Lincoln Technical InstituteElectrical and Electronics TrainingYesNoNoNoNo
    North Country
    Champlain Valley Educational ServicesElectrical Design, Installation, & Alternative EnergyYesNoNoNoNo
    Clinton Community CollegeTechnology DepartmentYesYesNoNoNo
    SUNY at CantonCanino School of Engineering TechnologyYesNoNoNoNo
    Southern Tier
    SUNY at DelhiSchool of Applied Technologies and ArchitectureNoYesNoNoNo
    Western New York
    Erie Community CollegeBuilding Trades/Residential Light CommercialYesNoNoNoNo
    SUNY at AlfredElectrical, Machine Tool, and Welding TechnologyNoYesNoNoNo

    Related Jobs