A telephone technician installs, tests, and repairs telephone wiring and systems. Often, a person with this title has the responsibility of installing telephone wiring inside a person’s home or in an office building. Then, he works to connect that telephone wiring to the outside wiring that is maintained by the company providing the telephone service. He may also work to make sure switchboards are working properly and repair equipment that fails to work as it should.
Many telephone technicians spend much of their time working on installing, testing, and repairing residential telephone wiring. Often, a telephone technician is assigned a truck he can use to travel from one customer to the next and carry the tools he needs to serve residences. Going from residence to residence, he may install the wiring necessary for telephone service and test it to make sure it works properly. He may also perform repairs when they are needed.
Working as a telephone technician is often a physical job. A person with this job may have to climb on ladders, bend, or kneel down in order to access telephone wiring. He may also have to climb telephone poles in order to access outside telephone wiring. Additionally, telephone technicians also drill holes in walls in order to access or install wires and connect them as needed.
Sometimes a telephone technician works to install telephone systems in office buildings. Much of this job is usually similar to that of a person who handles residences, but the technician may have to make more complicated connections. For example, he may have to arrange for calls to go to certain extensions rather than just one number in an office. He may also have to set up the system so that people within the same office can call each other on the phone using extension numbers. Additionally, telephone technicians may work to repair office switchboards when they stop working properly.
The criteria a person must meet to work as a telephone technician depend on the preferences of the employer. Some will hire those with high school diplomas, while others prefer those with electronics certification at minimum. Sometimes businesses promote people to the status of technician from within the company. In many cases, companies that hire telephone technicians require them to pass mechanical ability exams before they are hired or trained, and those who are color blind or do not have good eyesight may not be acceptable candidates for this job. Often, on-the-job training is provided.