What Are the Job Duties of Someone in Engineering Management?

Engineering management is distinguished by the technologically advanced nature and skills of the projects and workers. Most engineering managers are former engineers whose technical expertise allows them to oversee effectively employees, projects, and production lines in high-tech industries, such as semiconductor and aerospace component manufacturing, as well as scientific research and development in sectors, such as biomedicine. Schools offering Computer Engineering degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Career Overview

The American Society of Engineering Management defines the duties of an engineer manager as planning, organizing, allocating resources and directing activities that have technical or systems components. They must take up management duties as well as performing engineering tasks. Engineering managers deal with complex problems that require both management and engineering skills. They often report to a company's senior management.

Important Facts About Engineering Management

Median Salary (2014) $130,620 per year
Job Outlook (2014-2024) 2% growth
Required Education Most have at least a bachelor's degree in engineering; many have master's degrees
On-the-Job Training None, previous work experience mandatory
Work Environment May work in laboratories, production facilities or at construction sites, but most often in offices.
Similar Occupations Chemical engineer, civil engineer, production manager

Source: US Bureau of Labor Statistics

Supervise Engineers, Technicians, and Designers

Engineering managers supervise the employees in the technology-driven departments within an organization, including both the technicians and the support staff. In high-tech companies, such as aerospace and electronics component manufacture, engineering managers oversee the design and production processes.

Direct Projects

Worker supervision operates alongside directing the projects that the workers are involved in, be it research and development in pharmaceutical or biomedical fields, production and quality control in manufacturing plants, or product development and fabrication in industries. An engineering manager may be placed in charge of a facility, such as a manufacturing plant and may direct the design, operation, and maintenance of the facility. Engineering managers are in charge of operations that rely on technical expertise.

Set Technical Goals for the Organization

Within the broader goals set by organization executives, engineering management personnel set the technology goals for the organization. Those in engineering management have both the business and technical knowledge to identify how science and engineering can further the aims of the organization. Engineering managers identify new technology-driven opportunities for company expansion or new product development. When goals are not met, engineering managers examine technological reasons for the failure and develop solutions.

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