Technical Education Post

News and Information for Technical Educators

IDEAL Industries Invests in Skill And Labor Shortage of Electricians

America will face a shortage of electricians in the near future, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA).  7,000 electricians join the field each year, but 10,000 retire. The BLS reports that employment of electricians is projected to grow 10% from 2018 to 2028 — faster than the average for all occupations. According to PayScale, the average annual salary for electricians is $55,477. Per the BLS, the highest 10% of electricians earn more than $90,420. electricians owning a business have the potential to earn a six-figure salary — $150,000 to $200,000.

Founded in 1916, IDEAL is a global manufacturer of professional quality tools and supplies for electricians and professionals in construction, maintenance, datacom and OEM. In 2016, IDEAL created the IDEAL NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP; To combat the electrician shortage, raise awareness about such impressive salaries, and convince parents that their children could make a good living in the field.
This year, 58,223 professional electricians and students/apprentices, as well as 23 professional and 102 student teams, competed in 1,591 qualifying round events across 50 states and Canada from April to October to determine who would compete in the weekend event at Coronado Springs Resort in Orlando, Fla.
THE EVENT WILL BE TELEVISED on ESPN2 on December 15 at 8pm EST
Competitors in every event had to use NEC standards and know manufacturer specifications. They were also judged on safety and workmanship, among other technical requirements. They could only rely on their own experience.

In the apprentice/student individual competition, competitors worked for 45 minutes on walls similar to those in the professional category with similar work to perform. With Ideal tools and PVC in hand, the students showed off their knowledge. Jordan Finfrock of Flatwoods, Ky., ultimately took home $30,000 for individual first place prize. Benjamin Budd, Potsdam, N.Y. and Marty Evans, Cannon Falls, Minn., won $20,000 and $10,000 in second and third place respectively.

Smart technology is one force fueling the demand for electricians. But it’s also requiring a new breed of electrician — one trained in increasingly complex, integrated systems.

Smart home devices include everything from keyless door locks opened with fingerprint scanners to internet-connected light bulbs that turn on and off by voice command — all controlled remotely by smartphone or computer. Home builders are increasingly incorporating smart features into homes, and as the technology becomes more affordable, consumer demand is expected to increase. Forward-thinking electricians are in a prime position to introduce the idea of smart home technology to their customers.

Get ready… the 2019 IDEAL National Championship airs on ESPN 2 on Sunday, December 15th at 8PM Eastern

They are the men and women who keep the lights on and the world humming. From high in the sky to deep underground, and everywhere in-between, their electrical work is the backbone of some of the country’s most incredible projects. Who are they? What gives them their spark? Find out in Wire to Wire, presented by IDEAL Electrical.

Watch more Wire to Wire episodes on

Is your team up for the challenge? Join forces with a teammate from your company or school to compete in the relay-style challenge. You could win money for your team and IDEALcash for your organization, and scholarships for your school.

IDEAL Electrical brings you products that make your job easier; products that you can rely on, with warranties you can trust; products that are available whenever and wherever you need them. Every IDEAL Electrical product comes with the promise made by our founder more than 90 years ago.

The wide variety of products offered by IDEAL Electrical reaches the professionals of many markets. From the electrical contractor and datacomm technician to the production engineer and plant manager, the job is easier when IDEAL Electrical lends a helping hand. Our divisions are dedicated to the professionals we serve: Electrical, DataComm, Wire Processing and OEM Connection Systems.

IDEAL Electrical serves the needs of electrical and datacomm professionals. A division of IDEAL INDUSTRIES, INC. which also serves the high power interconnect market needs through Anderson Power Products, the environmental monitoring and measurement market through Casella Measurement, and the telecommunication industry through Trend Communications. Please visit their respective websites for more information.





ESPN2 on December 15 at 8pm EST


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