What does a Network Cabling Specialist Do?

Network Cabling Specialists (631A) install, test, label and document a variety of communications infrastructures including fibre optic, coaxial and other types of cable systems as well as network hardware to support data, voice and video applications.  

Job Related Skills, Values and Interests

  • reading and interpreting job reference material, diagrams, plans, manuals and technical specifications and developing a thorough knowledge of various equipment and systems as well as industry standards
  • performing site inspections; selecting and verifying cable pathways and spaces, taking measurements, laying out and routing pathways; as well as performing trade calculations for the electrical or optical characteristics of telecommunications
  • using proper work apparel and personal protective safety equipment
  • identifying and selecting hand tools, power tools and appropriate testing equipment
  • installing pulling medium in cable pathways, as well as cable supports; selecting fibre-optic cable for type, size, length, fire and performance rating; troubleshooting cable systems
  • installing fire-stop systems; internetworking hardware and components; dressing and labeling cables; terminating and splicing, cross-connecting and patching cables 
  • communicating (verbally or in writing) and interacting effectively with co-workers, supervisors and customers

Additional information on training standards for this particular trades in the Service sector may be found on the Ontario College of Trades (OCOT) website at: http://www.collegeoftrades.ca/wp-content/uploads/631A-Network-Cabling-Specialist-Training-Standard-OCT-2014_Final-VER-10.pdf

What Preparation and Training Do You Need?

To become a Network Cabling Specialist you must complete Grade 12 with your secondary school diploma, with senior credits in mathematics, communications and sciences and preferably with some drafting or electrical courses, before entry into an apprenticeship of 4000 hours of on-the-job training. Network cabling specialists usually require completion of community college or other courses in electrical and electronics programs as well as on the job training component. This is the minimum to be apprenticed in this trade under the (OCTAA) Ontario College of Trades Apprenticeship Act (2009). Please note that minimum entry requirements to this and other trades are currently under review by the Ontario College of Trades.

What’s Your Future as a Network Cabling Specialist?

  • Network Cabling Specialists usually work full-time, sometimes indoors but often outside within the information and communications technology industry, or the smaller companies that do contract work for them
  • Workers in this area will be required to keep pace with new equipment, new work specifications and faster and ever-changing technology
  • Once qualified, you may progress to supervisory or management positions

Network Cabling Specialists work for the following:

  • Construction firms
  • Telecommunications Carriers
  • Electric Power Utilities
  • Radio and TV/Cable Communications companies
  • Wholesale Trade
  • Electrical and Electronic Products

Wage Rate

  • apprentices start at a wage rate less than that of a journeyperson
  • this rate increases gradually as you gain competency and skill
  • Fully qualified Network Cabling Specialists can earn anywhere from $14.00 per hour to $25.00 per hour often with benefits and opportunities for overtime


Ask Yourself: Is working as a Network Cabling Specialist for You?

Are you able to climb poles or ladders, and sometimes work outdoors?

Yes      No

Are you interested in and willing to constantly learn about new technology?

Yes      No

Do you enjoy performing tasks safely in a logical, timely sequence?

Yes      No

Do you like working with a variety of hand tools?

Yes      No

Would you enjoy solving problems, visually checking things, testing them and diagnosing why something may not be working correctly?

Yes      No

Can you get the job done to tight deadlines with little supervision?

Yes      No

Do you enjoy performing a job where satisfying the customer is essential?

Yes      No

If you answered Yes to most of these questions, Network Cabling Specialist could be for you!

You may want to explore other jobs that require similar interests and skills such as:

  • Electrician, communications equipment
  • Telecommunications Installer & Repairer
  • Industrial Electrician
  • Electronics Assembler
  • Electronic Equipment Service Technician
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering Technician


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