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Electrician Interview Questions: Your Ultimate List to Hire Better

August 26, 2022 6 min. read
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Asking the right electrician interview questions is key to finding a new electrician who has the right skills, experience, and attitude to make a positive impact on your team.

It’s also the best way of expanding your team with qualified contractors, growing your electrical business, and taking on more work

General interview questions for electricians

Start your interview with these general questions to get a feel for the electrical candidate, their experience, and what skills they’ll bring to your team.

  • Why are you interested in the position?
  • Why did you choose to become an electrician?
  • What are your biggest strengths and weaknesses?
  • Do you have any additional certifications or licenses?
  • What is the most important skill an electrician should have?
  • What kind of electrical jobs do you work on in your current position?
  • What’s the biggest electrical challenge you encountered in your last role?
  • What types of electrical systems have you worked with in the past?
  • Where do you see yourself in five years?
  • Why should we hire you?

Technical questions for electricians

Test your electrical applicant’s skills and knowledge with these technical interview questions for electricians:

  • What is the difference between a breaker and a fuse?
  • How would you go about troubleshooting an existing electrical system?
  • What types of wiring might be used for a residential electrical job?
  • What are the most common defects of PLC?
  • What are the differences between wiring a high-voltage and low-voltage system?
  • Tell me about the most complicated electrical problem you have faced and how you solved it.
  • Have you used electrical contractor software in the past?
  • What tools, equipment, or machines do you use on the job site?
  • What do you know about the National Electrical Code?
  • Tell me about any energy-efficient upgrades you’ve recommended for a customer.

Behavioral interview questions for electricians

Behavioral or scenario-based questions can give you a better insight into how your candidate will respond in certain situations. Here are some scenario-based interview questions you should ask:

  • What would you do if you noticed another electrician doing something unsafe on the job?
  • How do you deal with an unhappy customer?
  • How do you stay safe on dangerous job sites?
  • Explain how you would handle the following emergency service call. (Then describe a service call you’ve answered in the past, and allow the candidate to respond.)
  • How do you make sure all electrical systems and equipment are working properly?
  • What do you do if you have incomplete instructions on the job?
  • Have you ever made a mistake on the job? How did you handle the situation?
  • How would you handle a customer who disagrees with the best way to fix an electrical issue?
  • How do you go about identifying the cause of an electrical problem?
  • Tell me about a time when you went above and beyond for a customer.

Role-specific questions for electricians

Depending on what type of electrician you’re hiring, you’ll want to ask the right role-related interview questions to cover specific skill sets and experience levels.

Electrical apprenticeship interview questions

Offering an electrician apprenticeship is a great way to attract aspiring electricians to your small business. Here are some questions to ask when interviewing an electrician apprentice:

  • Why do you want to become an electrician?
  • Have you ever worked in the electrical industry before?
  • Tell me about a time you had to overcome a challenge in your last position.
  • What is your three-year plan?
  • Have you received any electrical training yet? If so, tell me about it.
  • What would you consider to be the most important safety precaution for an electrician?
  • Do you prefer to work alone or in a team?
  • What types of electrical problems have you worked on in the past?

Master electrician interview questions

Master electricians can bring a ton of knowledge and experience to your team. If you’re hiring a licensed master electrician to join your electrical business, here are some questions you should ask:

  • How long have you been a licensed electrician for? Tell me about your experience.
  • When did you get your Master electrician license?
  • How do you approach an electrical apprentice if you notice they’re making frequent mistakes?
  • How do you stay up to date on the latest trends and changes in the electrical industry?
  • How do you troubleshoot a blackout?
  • How do you apply the National Electrical Code on the job?
  • How do you prevent electrical accidents at work?
  • What do you do if there’s a discrepancy between the electrical plans and the layout of a building?

Underground electrician interview questions

If you’re hiring an underground electrician to work on telecommunication systems and mines, consider asking the following questions:

  • Tell me about a time where you had to open switches or attach grounding devices to remove electrical hazards from fallen lines or to facilitate repairs.
  • What would your first 30, 60, and 90 days on the job look like as an electrician underground?
  • How would you identify a defective circuit breaker, fuse, voltage regulator, or transformer using wiring diagrams and electrical testing devices?
  • What training or experience makes you qualified for this underground electrician job?
  • How do you inspect and test power lines to locate and identify problems?
  • What methods have you found most effective to install or repair conduits, cables, wires, and related equipment like transformers, circuit breakers, or switches?

Industrial electrician interview questions

Industrial electricians are responsible for installing, repairing, and maintaining electrical systems within an industrial setting. To find a qualified industrial electrician, ask these questions:

  • What experience do you have as an industrial electrician?
  • What are the most common electrical systems you’ve worked on as an industrial electrician?
  • Describe a time when you had to troubleshoot an issue with a large piece of equipment.
  • What safety precautions do you take when working on a job site?
  • Describe your process for inspecting and testing electrical systems before and after an installation.
  • How do you stay organized when working on several wiring projects and installations at once?
  • How do you avoid accidents during electrical installations?
  • Tell me about how you use diagrams or schematics to solve a complicated problem.

Electrical engineer interview questions

A good electrical engineer will have an impressive working knowledge of electrical systems. If you’re hiring an electrical engineer for your company, ask these questions:

  • Why did you choose to pursue a career in electrical engineering?
  • What hard or soft skills make you a good electrical engineer?
  • Describe a challenge you’ve faced as an electrical engineer and how you overcame it.
  • How do you prioritize tasks when working on more than one project?
  • What do you know about IEC Codes?
  • What’s the difference between an alternator and a generator?
  • What do the different electrical wiring colors mean?

READ MORE: Hiring your first employee: when and how to do it successfully

Compensation and next-steps questions 

End your interview with questions about their salary expectations and potential start dates. Here are a few questions you can ask:

  • What are your salary expectations for this role?
  • Can you provide a list of references?
  • When would you be available to start?
  • Do you have a valid driver’s license?
  • Do you have any questions for me?

Pro Tip: Have your electrician salary range in mind before you start the interview process so you’re able to address any wage-related questions your candidates may have.

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Creating electrician job descriptions and interviewing candidates to grow your team of electricians isn’t easy—but scheduling work and managing your team can be.

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