What is an Applied Engineer?

Applied engineers work on the application, design and technical components in the development of new products. They integrate systems, thereby enhancing the manufacturing and utilization of an application as well as oversee the development teams within a company. Specific fields of applied engineering including six sigma, learn enterprises, quality control, nanotechnology, manufacturing systems and supply chain logistics and systems, as well as motorsport technology applications. These professionals employ a deliberate approach to solving a medley of problems regarding processes and flow systems, underscoring their highly refined technical, interpersonal and communication skills. Applied engineers have been instrumental in the development of aircraft, automobiles, and smartphones, among other products. If you are interested in becoming an applied engineer, contact the schools below this information to request information about programs near you!

Job Functions of Applied Engineers

These professionals demonstrate a proclivity to blend technical expertise with real world applications. In industrial settings such as robotics, aviation, computer drafting, electronics, graphic communications, construction and nanofabrication, applied engineers exhibit a range of skills, as they daily execute a bevy of tasks and duties to realize the fruition of a project. They employ statistics in control charts and tables to monitor system integrity; examine and/or establish quality control systems in a facility; execute production timelines; refine inventory systems; utilize production innovation in enhancing management; maintain standards in accordance with federal and municipal codes in maintaining safety and health standards; develop solutions to industrial organization problems; apply marketing and business acumen in the product lifecycle, and more Top firms looking to hire applied engineers include Northrop Grumman, Ford Motor Company and Motorola, Inc.

Academic Preparation

A Bachelor’s Degree is required by employers to receive a job offer from a firm to work as an applied engineer. This course of study explores the application of principles regarding the design, and creation of products and systems within a manufacturing context. Programs delve into issues as quality control, project management, systems integration and manufacturing processes as well as strive to refine critical-thinking and problem-solving capacities. Students take classes in the basics of production planning, materials science and personnel safety. To assume management positions with some firms, advanced degrees such as a Master’s or Ph.D. may be required. Holders of advanced degrees also have the credentials to teach at the university level. From a business perspective, those seeking executive roles should work to develop their acumen in budget management and negotiation, as they will be asked to broker deals with suppliers and other assets. Superb oral and written communication skills as well as leadership abilities are highly coveted.

Additional Resources and Salary information

The Association of Technology, Management, and Applied Engineering has developed congresses and resources to enhance the visibility of the field and equip practitioners with the latest knowledge and best practices in the industry. Like this organization, the Technology Student Association (TSA) and the National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE) offer resources and materials to candidates in the field, including a library of publications, news and technological innovations. These associations work to provide rich mentoring and networking opportunities for members and aspiring candidates to enter and/or advance in the field. At the university level, students capitalize on alumni networks and on-campus recruiting efforts made by leading firms to fulfill their talent needs. Companies such as IBM, Ingersoll Rand, General Mills and CoreComm are a sampling of the firms who have acquired new personnel through these avenues. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects a gradual decline in the employment prospects for these types of professionals, as manufacturing activities fall within the United States. O*Net reports that these professionals earn a yearly salary of $60,560.

Real Life Example of an Applied Engineer

As a project engineer for Applied Engineering, Mike Jamieson daily exhibits the range of skills a practitioner in the field must master to excel. He interfaces with internal and external team members and associates in-person and over e-mail every morning. He then focusses on business activities such as speaking with various suppliers on product inventory, consulting with clients on budget requirements and researching options on the internet. In the afternoon, he often leaves the office to visit clients and ongoing projects. He enjoys the opportunity to get out of the office and into the field to interact live with people. For example, on one project he consulted with one of the managers on an HVAC system for a residential structure, specifically the ductwork and air flow systems. Later in the afternoon, he returns to the office to revisit projects he initially tacked in the morning. He may attend more meetings to deliver presentations on status or negotiate with suppliers to acquire the best pricing for a client project. Demonstrating his commitment to continuous education, Jamieson in the evenings attends functions featuring industry thought leaders who make presentations on recent development in technology and best practices. In the past he attended a dinner featuring a presentation by a professor at Purdue University who presented a talk on refrigeration concepts and developing compressor innovations. Ultimately, each day presents him with a range of challenges and learning experiences that enrich him.

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