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What Experience Do You Need For A Career In Engineering & manufacturing

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All you need to know about the Engineering & manufacturing industry

Those working in engineering and manufacturing jobs can face some of the most challenging projects in the modern world. They are responsible for building and producing the goods for the society of tomorrow, and are responsible for coming up with innovative solutions to technical problems.

Engineering roles typically cover a range of jobs that fall within the following categories: chemical, mechanical, and electrical and software. Within these, there are a whole range of jobs and specialisms that span pretty much every other industry you can think of.

You could be involved with designing aerospace systems, designing and building infrastructures, or working in pharmaceuticals or utilities. Every-day products you see, such as food or the deodorant you put on in the morning, are designed and manufactured. The skills that you develop through engineering and manufacturing allow you to work across many industries so you can follow your interests and passions.

Manufacturing is centred upon the production of goods at high volumes, usually in factories. However, the manufacturing process requires a team of people to make it successful, including product developers, researchers, and even scientists.

Most of these roles in engineering and manufacturing will need a degree, although there are numerous apprenticeship routes that allow part-time study alongside full time work.

To become a fully chartered engineer you must complete a four-year MEng degree, or a bachelors and relevant work experience, and then complete a period of initial development. Manufacturing has more flexible routes to working up the career ladder.

Most of these roles are going to need a degree, many of which include a work placement that is sandwiched between years two and three.

However, there is a selection of apprenticeships for these roles. They will all require you to learn the technical and mathematical side of engineering, but alongside working, which you will be paid for. They function as an alternative to university and are aimed at school leavers or people who want to change their career.

There is a high demand for jobs within these industries and the starting salaries can be quite high, particularly for graduates. The industry also has a significant shortage of women in the workforce and there are movements to try and close the gender gap, particularly in engineering.

Skills & interests needed for Engineering & manufacturing

Skills and interests needed for engineering and manufacturing

All the technical skills required for this industry you will either learn through a degree or via the learning on an apprenticeship. Other soft skills that you’ll need to work within engineering and manufacturing include:

- Ability to Work Under Pressure
- Creativity
- Problem Solving
- Teamwork

What work experience do you need for a career in Engineering & manufacturing

Engineering and manufacturing is one of the few industries that work experience is not that essential for. The best experience you can get is through an apprenticeship or a placement, which can both be obtained at entry level and typically will be a year or more long.

However, if you are in university and are trying to secure some experience in your holidays you could reach out to local manufacturing and engineering workplaces and ask for a day of shadowing or perhaps some work experience.

Any experience that demonstrates teamwork and problem-solving abilities, for example a part-time job alongside your studies, will help strengthen your application for work placements.

Related Companies

TitleHead OfficeIndustry
SSEPerth, Perth and KinrossEngineering & manufacturing

Useful resources

Tomorrow’s Engineers
Environmental Engineering[
Engineering UK
Engineers Without Borders UK

Industry Bodies

Royal Academy of Engineers
Women’s Engineering Society
Society of Operational Engineers
Engineering Council
Institute of Manufacturing
The Institution of Engineering and Technology