Engineering managers oversee projects in engineering or architecture, ranging from highway planning to construction and maintenance. They may supervise the designers and developers of machinery, products, systems, and processes, or oversee production and operations in industrial plants. Plant engineers coordinate the installation and operation of equipment and machinery in industrial plants, and research-focused managing engineers oversee teams producing or improving products.
Engineering managers set the technical and scientific goals for a project, conduct research and design, outlines, create outlines and plan the activities of the project. Engineering managers often oversee large staff including natural science managers and information systems managers. Types of projects vary, but the highest paid involve electronic components manufacturing or semiconductors. Engineering managers are involved in every aspect of a project: equipment maintenance, survey work, managing budgets, and communicating with clients, management, staff and the public.
Bachelor’s degrees in engineering plus work experience in the field provide a solid foundation for engineering management. Many engineering managers complete MBAs (for those interested in less technical management) or master’s degrees in engineering management (MEM) for managing in more technical areas.
Some firms pay for their employee’s study or provide degree programs within their organization. Environmental and biomedical engineering are two areas of current expansion, so background in these specialties could be helpful in landing a lucrative position.
Along with practicing, engineering managers often teach and conduct research at universities.
Schools can be a good base for networking to find a top position, and signing up for a technical recruiting firm can also lead to jobs. The American society for Engineering Management offers state-by-state information on Engineering Management university programs along with job listings.
Remember, when you’re actively pursuing an open job, consider the listed requirements carefully. Compare what you bring to the table with what the employer wants. Write your resume in such a way that your skills and experience areas closely match those listed in the employer’s job posting. Change how your resume is worded if necessary. This can help you stand out and land a better position.
Visit some of the excellent Engineering Manager forums online such as:
http://www.eng-tips.com/threadminder.cfm?pid=768. Join these to network, meet other professionals and find out about open positions.
$140,210 average annual salary (www.bls.gov/oco). Here’s some additional salary information: