Career Profile: Network Cabling...

Career Profile: Network Cabling Specialist (French version available)

by Susan Huebert
Jobs People Do | JobsPeopleDo.com

Suppose that your Internet connection or your phone suddenly stopped working. If unplugging the connection and plugging it back in failed, you might need the services of a network cabling specialist. These tradespeople are an important part of keeping people informed and connected.  If you are detail-oriented and good with your hands, this career might be right for you.

Communications systems like the Internet and phones use cables and data networks to send messages from one place to another. Network cabling specialists install or repair these networks and keep them working properly. They might work in residential neighbourhoods, commercial businesses, and industrial buildings. These networks can include single lines, coaxial, and fibre optic cables for voice, video, and data transmission. People in this trade need to know the best type of cable to use in each situation.

Becoming a network cabling specialist normally involves completing a program that includes theoretical work, practical experience, and a trade certification exam. Normally, this process takes about two and a half years, and training is available through career colleges like Herzing. Courses in the program teach basic skills like how to test cable connections, but also how to comply with safety standards, how to prepare cost estimates, and other skills that people in this trade need. As in many fields, high school courses in mathematics and English are useful, as well as anything related to electronics.

Trade schools are good places to learn the skills necessary for becoming a network cabling specialist.  A typical program is twenty-four weeks long, including both practical experience and theoretical work. Other career colleges have similar programs that teach people what they need to know to work in this trade.

In some cases, on-the-job training and apprenticeships can be good ways of learning the trade. The first step is to find an employer who is willing to train an apprentice. Once the apprenticeship is registered, the employer can start the process of training. This option could be a good choice for many people, since they can start on a job right away and get the experience they need.

After completing the program, people in this trade can work with telecommunications or network installation companies, construction firms, data centres, and other companies that provide phone, Internet, or television services. Some of the work is indoors, but people in this trade might need to work outside to deal with underground cables and controls.

Being detail-oriented and careful is important for network cabling specialists. Patience is an important part of the work since it can take time to find a problem and to solve it. Becoming an expert in this trade could be a good choice for people with these qualities, and job opportunities are likely to be steady in the next few years.

Working as a network cabling specialist is not necessarily very physically difficult, but it can become harder as people age. Salaries in this trade generally begin at about $15 per hour, or about $39,000 per year and can rise to approximately $24 per hour or $55,000 per year. Jobs are likely to be more plentiful in cities than elsewhere, but almost every community has at least some need for people in this field.

Network cabling specialists do important work for keeping people connected and informed. If the job appeals to you, it could be a good choice.



Herzing College. “Network Cabling Specialist.” https://www.herzing.ca/programs/network-cabling-specialist#.

Network Telecom. “Network Cabling Specialist: How to Become One.” https://network-telecom.com/what-do-network-cabling-specialists-do-how-to-become-one/.

Payscale Canada. “Hourly Rate for Skill: Cabling.” https://www.payscale.com/research/CA/Skill=Cabling/Hourly_Rate.

Skilled Trades Ontario. “Network Cabling Specialist.” https://www.skilledtradesontario.ca/trade-information/network-cabling-specialist/.

Talent.ca. “Network Cabling Technician: Average Salary.” https://ca.talent.com/salary?job=cabling+technician.

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