The Difference Between an Electrician Vs. Professional Data Cable Installer

The Difference Between an Electrician Vs. Professional Data Cable Installer

There seem to be some common misconceptions that electricians and data cable installers are the same in recent years. However, if we dive deeper into this subject matter, we realize that both have two different job descriptions.

People seem to share the belief that electricians can perform the tasks of data cable installers. However, professionals from these fields perform different tasks and have different specializations.

This article will explain the primary differences between these two fields. Hopefully, this will clear any or all doubts that exist.

The Difference between Job Descriptions

The first thing is to understand where the differences lie. We need to look at the job description of both an electrician and a data cable installer.

So, what does a network cable technician do? Let’s find out.

  • Most data cabling professionals either install, remove, or even repair data cables or network cables. They work in accordance with specific national as well as international rules and standards of operation.
  • Network cabling technicians deal with digital, not electrical infrastructure or amenities. They primarily work with data or network cables to help build a digital ecosystem in your home, building, or workspace.
  • They help you connect one device to another, or even more like printers, television, desktop, laptop, etc. In some instances, they also help connect cables from one building or location to another.
  • Data cabling installers work with copper low voltage cables. These cables are responsible for carrying data and voice.

Now that we know the job description of a network cabling technician, let’s take a look at the job description of an electrician.

The tasks that an electrician performs can be put under the following points.

  • They work in the electricity sector with other engineers.
  • They primarily provide solutions to electrical problems for residential or commercial/industry levels.
  • An electrician’s sole job is to repair, fix, and even manage electrical networks and issues.
  • In most cases, electricians or electrical engineers also install electric cables, which are high voltage cables. These high voltage cables supply electricity.

What are the main differences?

Since we now have an overview of the job descriptions of both electricians and data cable installers, we can locate the significant differences between these two professions.

Both electricians and data cable technicians primarily deal with cabling services. The former deals with electrical cables, while the latter provides cabling services related to data and networks.

Firstly, we must understand that electricians work with electrical cables, networks, and infrastructure. They deal with issues like the voltage, electrical transmission, wiring or even rewiring of circuits, testing electrical systems, or even installing safety and precautionary components in your electrical networks.

This means that electricians do not deal with data or technology-related issues, concepts, or infrastructure. On the other hand, network cable technicians deal with low voltage cables that transmit both voice and data. They don’t deal with the electrical aspect. Rather, they are specialized in installing data cables that help connect different devices.

Even the process of installing data and electrical cables has different protocols and standards.

Secondly, we also need to understand that electricians do not specialize in the field of data transmission. For instance, if your home or building has a firewall that prevents proper data transmission, electricians cannot help you. You need to call professional network cable technicians who know about firewalls and firestops for such issues.

Thirdly, while electrical engineers are to be respected in their line of work, they cannot connect different data cables to ensure proper data transmission. This means they are not trained for network cable management like network cable technicians.

A professional data cable installer will know which data cable goes where. They will see that you do not have any loose ends. Since many types of lines are required to set up a network, having a data cable installer come to do this is in the best interest of everyone.

Lastly, both electricians and data cable installers follow different codes of conduct, standards, procedures, and rules.


It’s interesting to note that despite the vast dissimilarities, there are similarities between these two professions as well. Take a look at the shared features below:

  • Both jobs require them to be skilled at reading technical manuals, diagrams, and blueprints.
  • Electricians and data cable installers have a basic knowledge of cables and how to handle them. In the case of data cable installers, they also tend to possess basic electrical knowledge.
  • Both jobs call for not only installing but even testing or fixing issues in pre-existing connections.
  • We can also see that both professions require them to follow specific codes and procedures. This includes building safety codes or even particular standards set by the industry. The bottom line, they both need to follow and prioritize safety protocols.


We hope that this article clears up any doubts you have regarding the functions of an electrician and a data cable installer.

If you’re thinking of getting a data connection for your business, it is best to call a network cable technician. No matter how skilled and trained an electrician is, they lack the specialization to install and manage data cables.

Data cable installers know precisely how to bring networks, devices, and data connectivity to your workspace.

Electricians can help locate faulty circuits or fix voltage issues. However, data cable installers will see to it that you have a proper communication infrastructure and network wherever you are!

Massimo DeRocchis

My life has been surrounded with computers since I was a child, from my first job as a Computer Assembly Assistant to the current ownership of Priority Networks, a dental focused networking company. Starting with an Apple computer connecting to other networks when I was only 13 years old, I quickly knew this passion would lead to bigger ventures. As the internet started to evolve, I immediately worked for an Internet Service Provider (ISP). This gave me insight to the power of worldwide internet communications and the capabilities of sharing data across multiple networks simultaneously. The dedication towards this field has given me the advantage of understanding new technologies and grasping complicated issues quickly from software, hardware, networking, security, management and much more. As a Computer Network Manager for Tesma International, a division of Magna International, I gained the experience of becoming a qualified NAI Network Sniffer, EDI Communications Specialist, Head Securities Manager, MRP Manufacturing Integration Manager, and received several enhanced managerial and technological training courses. Moving forward to today, I apply all my knowledge, training and years of solid network experience to deliver the very best support to all my customers at Priority Networks.