Engineering - Manufacturing School Leaver Jobs - Careers Guide

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Everyone wants to save money these days, and we're always looking for new ways to stretch our finances that little bit more. Some people make it their job to find ways to be efficient – manufacturing engineers are some of these people.Manufacturing engineering

When a company makes something on a production line, there's a lot to be considered. Are good materials being used? Is it being produced in the most streamlined way? Is it meeting clients' expectations? Manufacturing engineers get into the heart of all this, using their management, research, design and problem-solving skills to ensure everything is being done in the best way possible. You may end up focusing on just the product design aspect, or on the production system itself, or overseeing a large operation.

What’s it all about?TOP ^

A career in manufacturing engineering can take you to a number of different industries, including pharmaceutical, paper, IT, automotive, electronics and more. Once you know the kinds of problems and situations a company faces when producing goods, you can use the skills you've learned to step in and get it done right.

Some manufacturing engineering degree programmes include industry experience, which is a perfect way to start off your career after university, or look for apprenticeships as a school leaver.

While this is a job that's perfect for someone who's both creative and practical, it's also one that has a lot of rules to adhere to – manufacturing engineers hear the words “health and safety” a lot. Items need to be produced within the regulations set for the industry you're working in, and you'll need to consider those as you design enhancements for a product or production system.
Hours can vary depending on the type of job you do – some are office-based and standard 9-5, but shift work is common. When you become experienced, it is possible to work as a freelance consultant in this job.

What will I earn? TOP ^

A graduate salary is usually just over £20,000, but an experienced manufacturing engineer can earn over £50,000.

Where can I work? TOP ^

The best way into a manufacturing engineering career is by getting a degree. So, you'll need at least five GCSEs at C or above, including ones in Maths and English. Make sure you've got at least three A Levels too, particularly ones in Maths and Physics.

You can also take on an apprenticeship to learn about the technical side of working at a production plant or manufacturing line.
Manufacturing engineers are employed in many different businesses and industries, so expect to move between various places during your career. You could work in pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, aerospace or automotive among others.

What skills do I need in manufacturing engineering? TOP ^

If you like maths and sciences, but also have a lot of other subjects you’re interested in, you'll find that a career in this sector will utilise a lot of your different skills. While you need to get into the gritty details of how a product is actually made, you also need to know how the creative development works, plus manage budgets and inventory lists. You'll often have to liaise with other departments in the company, so good communication skills are a must.

Manufacturing engineers manage production processes and try to make the manufacture of products as efficient as possible.
Some skills that would be useful for a manufacturing engineering role include:

What entry level manufacturing engineering jobs can I do? TOP ^

As manufacturing engineers have to have a high level of technical expertise, it is likely that you’ll need a engineering degree to start your career.

Some entry level manufacturing engineering jobs you can go into on graduation include:

  • Manufacturing engineer
  • Maintenance engineer
  • Production manager
  • Quality manager
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