Telecommunications is yet another strong to the bow of engineering and accounts for almost 65,000 jobs in the UK.
If this is an area that interests you, there are plenty of postgraduate courses for you to choose from to add to your education.
It is never too late or a bad idea to continue to develop your career to get you where you want to be. Why not start now?
What is telecommunications engineering?
Telecommunications engineering focuses on electrical and computer engineering. It’s aim is to support and enhance telecommunications systems. It ranges from the basics of circuit design all the way to strategic mass developments.
What does a telecommunications engineer do?
As a telecommunications engineer, you will typically work 9 to 5, however, working extra is possible in this field. The day to day duties of a telecommunications engineer may differ. Duties include:
- Set up communication networks
- Set up data networks
- Install aerials and satellites
- Design and build equipments
- Test, re-test and alter equipment and components
- Lay cable and meet suppliers
- Test cable both underground and underfloor
- Record and write records and documentation
- Liaise with clients and employers
- Find and fix faults with equipment and components
- Drive from job to jo, possibly daily
- Provide technical guidance to colleagues and clients
- Attend conferences and meetings
There are many courses to choose from across the UK. Some courses offer the option of studying part time or full time. There may also be Covid-19 restrictions in particular universities. More detailed versions of courses can be found online on university websites. Examples of courses available include:
Most postgraduate degrees in telecommunications offer a balance of theory and practical experience. Students will delve into the world of engineering principles such as specification, design, development, and deployment of telecommunication. Many courses may also offer specialised training in multiple 5G technologies including fibre optic communications, satellite communications, antenna and RF technologies and networks and security, to name a few. Students will gain knowledge of telecommunications networks.
5G Advances Communications
Students who take a course in this area will cover the theoretical, practical and technological aspects of 5G Communications Systems and gain expertise and knowledge in the latest technologies that drive technological revolutions, past, present and future. You’ll gain knowledge in technologies that evolve the current 4G environments and 5G communications enabled systems. Other areas covered include robotics, autonomous systems, UAV’s, immersive systems and more.
Advanced Computer Networks
Courses in advanced computer networks allow students to develop their skills and knowledge in designing, implementing, maintaining, troubleshooting and securing wired and wireless networks. Students will also be able to tailor their studies to match their interests as well as learn the ins and outs of Network Development Suite.
Entry requirements may differ from course to course and university to university. In most cases, you will be required to have a 2.1 honours degree in a relevant subject. Some courses may accept a 2.2 honours degree. It is important to research your particular course to make sure you meet specific requirements. All information can be found on course overviews and on university websites.
Employers in this area may include:
- Technical services companies
- Government departments
- Equipment manufacturers
- Communications device installation companies
- Local authorities
Starting salaries for a telecommunications engineer are usually around £22,000 to £28,000 but can be as low as £16,000 in some cases. As you gain experience and expertise, the salary will rise and you can earn up to £55,000 in your role. Overall, the average salary in this role is between £27,000 to £30,000. Like many other engineering jobs, the salary of a telecommunications engineer can differ depending on the company you work for and locations. All figures are based on estimates.
Skills and requirements
Skills and requirements that are helpful, and often necessary, in this field:
- Excellent IT skills
- A great understanding of technology
- Strong written skills
- Strong verbal skills
- Ability to learn new skills
- Practical skills
- Research skills
- Problem solver and analytical skills
- A creative mind
- Attention to detail
- Organisation skills
- Time management skills
- Good project management skills
- Ability to present findings and data to colleagues and clients
- Ability to work in a team with others and by yourself
- Commercial awareness