Engineering and Automotive Graduate Jobs - Careers Guide

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There are over 40 million cars on the road in the UK, and that amount of traffic means that we need safe and good-working vehicles. That’s where automotive engineers come in.

Automotive EngineeringAutomotive engineers design and develop technology, products and materials that improve processes and solve problems. They are often also involved in testing and installation. This industry covers many types of engineering including mechanical, electrical, software and safety engineering.

Because of the diverse areas of work involved, there are many graduate job opportunities in automotive engineering available.

What degree do I need?TOP ^

A relevant engineering degree is vital if you want to enter the automotive engineering industry and relevant work experience is important too. However, some employers will take on new staff who are only educated to diploma level – if they can continue their education through professional courses.

The degrees that will allow you to get a graduate automotive engineering job include:
  • Mechanical engineering
  • Aeronautical engineering
  • Manufacturing engineering
  • Electrical engineering
  • Applied sciences
  • Nuclear engineer
Your engineering course will delve into how engineers use the principles of physics and material science to analyse, design and produce new mechanical systems.

Many engineers go on to complete a postgraduate course. These are highly vocational and will include modules on project management and leadership.

What skills do I need?TOP ^

Automotive engineers have to combine mathematical, scientific, technology and employability skills during their day to day job. As a automotive engineer you will be creative, a good problem solver, highly computer literate and have good attention to detail.

Some skills that would be useful for a graduate mechanical engineering role include:Engineers will develop their skills throughout their careers, constantly updating and improving their abilities as industry norms change and new techniques and programmes become available. You should consider taking membership of the appropriate professional body, as this will allow you to gain extra skills and qualifications, particularly if you gain chartered status.

What graduate automotive engineering jobs can I do? TOP ^

Automotive engineering offers a diverse number of roles covering many engineering disciplines. Graduates go into roles in design, development, operation and maintenance in any piece of machinery that has moving parts.

It is important to continue developing your skills throughout your professional career, so you should look to try and gain chartered engineer status in whichever country you plan on working in.

Going into academia and taking a PhD or further study is also a popular route for postgraduates.

Some jobs include:
  • Body engineer
  • Development engineer
  • Manufacturing engineer
  • Production manager
  • Quality manager
  • Design engineer
Average salaries

Graduates starting in the automotive engineering industry can expect a starting salary between £23,000 and £30,000, depending on the employer and work experience.

Experienced engineers can expect to earn between £35,000 and £45,000 per year depending on their role and whether they have gained a chartership. Those in senior positions can earn up to £65,000.
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