Design Engineer Job Description, Skills, and Salary
Get to know about the duties, responsibilities, qualifications, and skills requirements of a design engineer. Feel free to use our design engineer job description template to produce your own. We also provide you with information about the salary you can earn as a design engineer.
Who is a Design Engineer?
Firstly, Design is an act of shaping a concept, or idea into workable and tangible information. This is quite different from building or producing. It is better seen as the architectural work which sends a clear picture to the builder or producer of what is required. From an engineering point of view, it is the application of scientific ideas, intuition, and creativity to conceive a structure, machine, or system that performs a predefined function.
‘Design Engineering is a design process based on pluridimensional quantified requirements and multiple measurable design attributes. It could involve the identification of the best redesign for any feedback.
A design Engineer then is an engineer focused on the engineering design process in any of the various engineering disciplines. He is an engineer who makes use of software such as Computer-Aided Design (CAD) and Computer-Aided Industrial Design (CAID) to sketch, develop and create ideas; create models and specific machine instructions that tell other machines exactly how to build a product. He is the foundation and primary brain behind the production of a given product, which is one of the reasons why it is a high-paying career.
Furthermore, a Design Engineer maps out plans for new products while also revising old and existing ones. Being a Digital Engineer is all about creating ideas, and transforming those ideas into real products. Actually, a degree is necessary to be a certified design engineer, nevertheless, it is also possible to gain reasonable knowledge and experience by working as an apprenticeship.
A Design Engineer may seem to work alone in this industry, but then, the fact is that he collaborates with the research development, and other sets of engineers in the creative sector and department to create highly efficient products to meet users’ needs. As simple as the name sounds, there are so many tasks attributed to a design engineer, and these form his job description.
Design Engineer Job Description
Below are the design engineer job description examples you can use to develop your resume or write a design engineer job description for your employee. Employers can also use it to sieve out job seekers when choosing candidates for interviews.
The duties and responsibilities of a design engineer include the following:
- Cooperate with clients to identify their needs.
- Research and undertake analysis on how to advance existing projects and products.
- Use CAN, CAD, and CAM systems to design and visualize projects, and craft models of products.
- Write technical reports to summarize new ideas, tender and develop new projects.
- Design the materials, beauty, and functionality of components.
- Undertake complex calculations
- Lead a team of Engineers
- Research and draft blueprints, plans, and graphics.
- Communicate effectively with the customers, clients, and contractors involved in a project.
- Plan efficiently to ensure projects are up to standard and meet up with time.
- Estimate costs and budgets for new product designs.
- Supervise ongoing manufacture of all designs.
- Maintain already existing engineering records, products, and designs.
- Ensure compliance with the safety standards of the industry.
- Hand over prototypes and designs to project managers and clients.
Every discipline has its qualification whether through a formal or an informal process. This, however, is not foreign to the design engineering world. Consequently, one can be a design engineer either vocationally or academically. That is to say that the design engineering profession can be embarked on by both graduates and school leavers (school drop-outs). While graduates would be needing some academic degrees, certifications, and qualifications, school leavers will only be requiring experience in the field.
- In the ambiance of the academic route qualifications, design engineers in most cases are expected to have gotten a bachelor’s degree in a relevant technical or engineering course such as design, civil, mechanical, electrical, or chemical engineering. Some employers would require the candidate to have a first-class or second-class upper, while some others would accept a second-class lower.
- In some cases, non-relevant degrees can be considered, and it can be possible to undergo a postgraduate conversion course.
- One could also consider attending a university to undertake a top-up degree, to progress to incorporated or chartered status. Some employers can permit you to work part-time to obtain a master’s.
- You can also become a design engineer or engineering technician with HNC or HND foundation degree
- Another vital route is the engineering apprenticeship, which requires job training while working towards gaining experience. The apprenticeship is training to be received from an expert in the field in other to be able to deliver and thus, become a design engineer.
- They can also obtain various certifications to show their experience and advancement in the design engineering field. Such as AutoCAD (this is offered by Autodesk), and is a software used by various design engineers; it shows a certain level of expertise in the field and must be obtained online after passing an online examination. Others are Certificate Associate in Engineering Management (CAEM), American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), and Certified Professional in Engineering Management (CPEM).
Every profession and job has its set skills, without which you are not regarded as one. In order to succeed in such a profession, you ought to possess its corresponding skillset. The same applies to the Design Engineer; there are so many skills required of you in order to be regarded as an experienced and professional Design Engineer. You require both some soft and hard skills to enable you to do your job well, they are:
- Mathematical Skills: Design Engineers work with complex CAD software to develop products and specialized equipment to create prototypes. A deep understanding of this skill helps the engineer understands his raw materials and processes them better.
- The skill of Creativity – As a Design Engineer you should be creative and innovative, able to produce new ideas, not really depending on the use of science and technology.
- Technical Skills – Expertise with AutoCAD and other production software is a necessity. Knowledge of the manufacturing tools would be very useful.
- Analytical Thinking – A Design Engineer should be able to think outside the box. They should be able to change small details of a prototype to have a large effect.
- Time Management – Design Engineers should be able to prioritize duties and projects and meet up to deadlines.
- Communication Skills – As a Design Engineer, you meet clients often, and therefore should develop excellent communication skills which would help build relationships with a given investor or client. They must have great listening and assimilating skills to process the design requests of clients.
- Teamwork – Design Engineers do not work alone, as they work with a team of other engineers, supervisors, managers, investors, and financial advisors. This helps the Design Engineer in the division of labor and makes his work easier.
- Problem-solving – Design Engineers should be open to solving existing problems and should not run away from problems when they surface.
- Attention to Details – A Design Engineer should have an eye for details and shouldn’t overlook things, even the smallest.
Other skills include:
- Commercial Awareness
- Good visual and spatial awareness.
- Negotiation Skills
- Organizational Skills
- Analytical and numeracy skills
- Leadership Skills
- Ability to write reports (writing skills)
How to become a Design Engineer
Ever thought about choosing a career in this digital and technologically advanced era?
There are so many high-income professions out there making moves that you should look into. Searching for a career can take time, probably a few weeks, months, and even years as the case may be. As difficult as this search for a career path may be, you might want to consider going into Design Engineering. Find below all you need to know about the Digital Engineering career.
Design engineering is a cannot-do without skill in the engineering industry as they give details to new products, identify problems, and develop and improve solutions. This is a process used in creating essential products and processes. High-income careers must be problem-solving, and design engineering is one of those.
All successful companies in the industrial world, continuously operate in a state of creativity in terms of the products they produce; frequently introducing new products and/or modifying and rebranding old products as desired by a client. The overall process of conceiving a product, designing that product, manufacturing, and selling that product is known by a comprehensive and generalized procedure called product development, where the design engineer is the initiator of the design of that particular product.
To become a Design Engineer, you would be required to take the following steps:
- Obtain a bachelor’s degree in design or engineering, either Bachelor of Industrial Design or Bachelor of Engineering, or still an HNC or HND in product design.
- Get an internship while studying under a professional and experienced Design Engineer and apply your skills, as this can be accepted in place of 1 higher at a college or university.
- Contemplate obtaining a postgraduate degree such as a Master of Engineer to advance your skill.
- Register with professional communities and organizations like the Institution of Mechanical Engineers to enhance your credentials.
- Acquire basic technical skills such as mathematical skills, communication skills, creativity, time management, and many others.
- Keep a record of your designs and a portfolio of your design works.
- Own a driving license, as it could be an added advantage, should you have the opportunity to drive to meet clients.
Where to work as a Design Engineer
As a Design engineer, you can either be working with a team, or working for a large firm or manufacturing operation, or you can be the only design engineer working at a small firm. As a Design Engineer, here are some of the places where you can work:
- Computer Hardware companies.
- Aerospace, Aeronautical and automotive industries.
- Blue Chip companies.
- Design Consultancy Sectors.
- Medical equipment companies.
- Electrical companies.
- Research Institutions and Colleges.
- Large manufacturing companies.
- Shipbuilding producers.
- Biomedical industries.
- Power and utility companies.
- Engineering companies.
- Software development communities.
- Construction companies.
- Oil and gas industries.
- Water treatment services.
- Transportation and highways.
Nevertheless, you can become self-employed and create a brand of your own when you are an experienced design engineer. Some graduates set up their own after graduation.
Design Engineer Salary Scale
There are so many determining factors when it comes to how much a design engineer earns, either hourly, weekly, monthly or annually. The good news therein is, that whichever criteria are put in, you still earn high, which is why the design engineering profession or job is regarded as a high-income one.
These criteria range from your level of experience, educational level attained the location of the firm, the demand for the job in a particular location, the size of the industry, acquired skills, etc.
In the UK for instance, the basic salary for a newly qualified design engineer ranges from £20,000 to £25,000 a year. While experienced design engineers earn up to £30,000 per annum and senior engineers can earn upwards of £50,000 annually. London can pay from a start of £27,000 upwards. Experienced engineers can earn from £30,000 to £40,000 and chartered engineers earn upwards of £50,000.
It is different in the United States, where the common salary is $78,300 per year, while some are from $24,000 to $163,000.
In Australia, the yearly salary of a design engineer ranges from $80,000 to $130,000.
A Design Engineer in Dubai earns about 20,400AED per month; it ranges from 9,790 to 32,000AED depending on the criteria aforementioned.
Nigeria seems to have the lowest pay of the aforementioned countries, with its lowest pay at ₦139,000 per month. Some earn higher with pay ranging from ₦140,000 to ₦454,000.
However, a Design Engineer can gain additional benefits of a company car, health insurance, accommodation, pension, and in some cases, sponsorship for postgraduate courses.
Design Engineering is a well-respected profession, and people who go into such a profession are always going to be needed, in so far as you have the essential skills and qualifications needed. Design engineers are in high demand, in all countries and in lots of different industries. You should understand all about a design engineer and what design in general is, along with how the profession is expected to grow and which skills are essential to acquire. With all these, however, while choosing a career, you should also consider becoming a design engineer. You only need to have the set skills and gain some experience.