A production engineer works within a number of industries, including petroleum, automotive and manufacturing of various goods. It is an interdisciplinary field that involves working with manufacturers, product designers, finance specialists and legal professionals to produce the best product in a timely and cost efficient manner.
Someone wanting to become a production engineer should have the ability to oversee others and communicate effectively. Production engineers often work in teams and participate in every stage of product development to detect and solve possible production issues.
A bachelor’s degree may be acquired in manufacturing, industrial or production engineering for this profession. Chemical, electrical or mechanical engineering degrees can also serve as stepping stones toward becoming a production engineer, although additional coursework may be required depending on previously completed program.
Postgraduate degrees for industrial engineering are quite diversified and can lead to a wide variety of career opportunities. Higher-level degrees also contribute to greater salary possibilities.
A production engineer in the petroleum industry may oversee a specific well or drilling project. In the automotive industry, the product engineer may oversee a specific portion of the car’s production. Every manufacturing corporation employs production engineers.
Generally, a production engineer should work well with others, demonstrate strong communication skills and be an effective problem solver. The focus for most production engineers is to establish and maintain economical and effective production.
Depending on the specific area of manufacturing, a production engineer may perform some or all of the following job duties:
Production engineers are involved in the manufacturing of a product from the original design and prototypes to the completed production line. This profession involves various disciplines and interpersonal abilities due to the constant interaction with other professionals.
Based on the 2006 Census, production engineers earned an average of $68,620 annually. With experience and additional education, some industrial engineers earn over $100,000. The type of manufacturing and the geographic location of the job may also affect salary level.
The Department of Labor anticipates 20 percent growth in this field, which is faster than average compared to all occupations. With such a wide variety of manufacturing industries requiring production engineers, the market for this profession is almost unlimited.