Electrical drafters support engineers in the design and conceptualisation of electrical equipment. They draft, with the support of specialised software, the specifications of a varied number of electrical systems such as voltage transformers, power plants, or energy supply in buildings.
Duties of an Electrical Drafter may include:
- Create detailed technical drawings and schematics for electrical systems and components using computer-aided design (CAD) software
- Collaborate with engineers, designers, and project managers to develop electrical system plans and specifications
- Review and analyze engineering drawings, specifications, and other documentation to ensure that designs meet standards and regulations
- Modify and revise designs based on feedback from engineers and other team members
- Test and troubleshoot electrical systems and components to identify and correct issues
- Document and maintain project drawings, records, and specifications
- Stay up-to-date with new technology, equipment, and techniques in the electrical drafting field
The following job titles also refer to electrical drafter:
electrical systems draughter
draughter of electrical systems
electrical equipment engineering draughter
electrical design draughter
electrical drafting consultant
electrical design drafter
electrical equipment design drafter
electrical drafting adviser
draughter in electrical systems
electrical drafting expert
electrical equipment design draughter
electrical engineering drafter
electrical drafting specialist
Electrical drafters work in a variety of settings, including engineering and design firms, construction companies, and manufacturing facilities. They spend much of their time sitting at a computer workstation, but may also need to travel to job sites to gather information or work on location. The work can be demanding, and may require long hours or tight deadlines, particularly during the construction phase of a project.
Most electrical drafting positions require at least an associate’s degree or vocational training in drafting or a related field. Employers may also require certification in computer-aided design (CAD) software or specific electrical drafting tools.
Entry-level positions may be available for candidates with a high school diploma or equivalent, but additional training or education is typically required for career advancement. Apprenticeships, internships, and on-the-job training programs may also be available to help aspiring electrical drafters gain experience and develop their skills.
ISCO skill level
ISCO skill level is defined as a function of the complexity and range of tasks and duties to be performed in an occupation. It is measured on a scale from 1 to 4, with 1 the lowest level and 4 the highest, by considering:
- the nature of the work performed in an occupation in relation to the characteristic tasks and duties
- the level of formal education required for competent performance of the tasks and duties involved and
- the amount of informal on-the-job training and/or previous experience in a related occupation required for competent performance of these tasks and duties.
Electrical drafter is a Skill level 3 occupation.
Electrical drafter career path
These occupations, although different, require a lot of knowledge and skills similar to electrical drafter.
Long term prospects
These occupations require some skills and knowledge of electrical drafter. They also require other skills and knowledge, but at a higher ISCO skill level, meaning these occupations are accessible from a position of electrical drafter with a significant experience and/or extensive training.
Essential knowledge and skills
This knowledge should be acquired through learning to fulfill the role of electrical drafter.
- Electricity principles: Electricity is created when electric current flows along a conductor. It entails the movement of free electrons between atoms. The more free electrons are present in a material, the better this material conducts. The three main parameters of electricity are the voltage, current (ampère), and resistance (ohm).
- Electrical equipment regulations: The national and international regulations with regards to the use and manufacture of electrical equipment on the workfloor. These regulations provide rules and guidelines on topics such as general risk management, electrical equipment manufacture, electrical equipment testing, electrical equipment installation, warning labels, and certificates.
- Design drawings: Understand design drawings detailing the design of products, tools, and engineering systems.
- Electrical engineering: Understand electrical engineering, a field of engineering that deals with the study and application of electricity, electronics, and electromagnetism.
- Mathematics: Mathematics is the study of topics such as quantity, structure, space, and change. It involves the identification of patterns and formulating new conjectures based on them. Mathematicians strive to prove the truth or falsity of these conjectures. There are many fields of mathematics, some of which are widely used for practical applications.
- Technical drawings: Drawing software and the various symbols, perspectives, units of measurement, notation systems, visual styles and page layouts used in technical drawings.
- CAD software: The computer-aided design (CAD) software for creating, modifying, analysing or optimising a design.
- Manual draughting techniques: Techniques used for creating detailed drawings of designs by using specialised pencils, rulers, templates and scales.
- Electricity: Understand the principles of electricity and electrical power circuits, as well as the associated risks.
- Electrical equipment components: The essential components of a certain electrical product, such as electrical wires, circuit breakers, and switches.
- Electrical wiring diagrams: The visual schematic representation of an electrical circuit, its components, and the connections between these components.
Essential skills and competences
These skills are necessary for the role of electrical drafter.
- Design electrical systems: Draft sketches and design electrical systems, products, and components using Computer Aided Design (CAD) software and equipment. Draw panel arrangement layouts, electrical schematics, electrical wiring diagrams, and other assembly details.
- Process customer requests based on the REACh regulation 1907 2006: Reply to private consumer requests according to REACh Regulation 1907/2006 whereby chemical Substances of Very High Concern (SVHC) should be minimal. Advise customers on how to proceed and protect themselves if the presence of SVHC is higher than expected.
- Customise drafts: Edit drawings, schematic diagrams, and drafts according to specifications.
- Use technical drawing software: Create technical designs and technical drawings using specialised software.
- Create technical plans: Create detailed technical plans of machinery, equipment, tools and other products.
- Use CAD software: Use computer-aided design (CAD) systems to assist in the creation, modification, analysis, or optimisation of a design.
- Design prototypes: Design prototypes of products or components of products by applying design and engineering principles.
- Draw blueprints: Draw layout specifications for machinery, equipment and building structures. Specify which materials should be used and the size of the components. Show different angles and views of the product.
- Abide by regulations on banned materials: Comply with regulations banning heavy metals in solder, flame retardants in plastics, and phthalate plasticisers in plastics and wiring harness insulations, under EU RoHS/WEEE Directives and China RoHS legislation.
- Liaise with engineers: Collaborate with engineers to ensure common understanding and discuss product design, development and improvement.
- Ensure material compliance: Ensure that the materials provided by suppliers comply with the specified requirements.
- Model electrical system: Model and simulate an electrical system, product, or component so that an assessment can be made of the viability of the product and so the physical parameters can be examined before the actual building of the product.
- Interpret electrical diagrams: Read and comprehend blueprints and electrical diagrams; understand technical instructions and engineering manuals for assembling electrical equipment; understand electricity theory and electronic components.
Optional knowledge and skills
This knowledge is sometimes, but not always, required for the role of electrical drafter. However, mastering this knowledge allows you to have more opportunities for career development.
- Engineering principles: The engineering elements like functionality, replicability, and costs in relation to the design and how they are applied in the completion of engineering projects.
- Electromechanics: The engineering processes that combine electrical and mechanical engineering in the application of electromechanics in devices that need electricity to create mechanical movement or devices that create electricity by mechanical movement.
- Manufacturing processes: The steps required through which a material is transformed into a product, its development and full-scale manufacturing.
- CAE software: The software to perform computer-aided engineering (CAE) analysis tasks such as Finite Element Analysis and Computational Fluid Dynamics.
Optional skills and competences
These skills and competences are sometimes, but not always, required for the role of electrical drafter. However, mastering these skills and competences allows you to have more opportunities for career development.
- Provide technical documentation: Prepare documentation for existing and upcoming products or services, describing their functionality and composition in such a way that it is understandable for a wide audience without technical background and compliant with defined requirements and standards. Keep documentation up to date.
- Communicate with customers: Respond to and communicate with customers in the most efficient and appropriate manner to enable them to access the desired products or services, or any other help they may require.
- Use manual draughting techniques: Use non-computerised draughting techniques to make detailed drawings of designs by hand with specialised tools such as pencils, rulers and templates.
- Create a product’s virtual model: Create a mathematical or three-dimensional computer graphic model of the product by using a CAE system or a calculator.
- Plan manufacturing processes: Determine and schedule production and assembly steps. Plan manpower and equipment needs taking ergonomic considerations into account.
- Draft bill of materials: Set up a list of materials, components, and assemblies as well as the quantities needed to manufacture a certain product.
- Review drafts: Proofread and give feedback to technical drawings or drafts.
- Apply technical communication skills: Explain technical details to non-technical customers, stakeholders, or any other interested parties in a clear and concise manner.
- Design electromechanical systems: Draft sketches and design electromechanical systems, products, and components using Computer Aided Design (CAD) software and equipment.
- Keep records of work progress: Maintain records of the progress of the work including time, defects, malfunctions, etc.
- Develop assembly instructions: Develop a code of letters and numbers to label diagrams for assembly instructions.
- Train employees: Lead and guide employees through a process in which they are taught the necessary skills for the perspective job. Organise activities aimed at introducing the work and systems or improving the performance of individuals and groups in organisational settings.
- Prepare assembly drawings: Create the drawings that identify the different components and materials, and that provide instructions as to how they should be assembled.
ISCO group and title
3118 – Draughtspersons
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- Featured image: By Trajkoski Goce – Own work, Public Domain