The Department of Labor reports that there are 284,600 industrial engineers and 142,030 engineers not listed separately in other categories employed in the United States. The types of companies manufacturing engineers work for include aerospace product and parts manufacturing; architectural, engineering, and related services; motor vehicle parts manufacturing; and semiconductor and other electronic components manufacturing.
Manufacturing engineers start their careers through internships, apprenticeships, and entry-level positions in manufacturing engineering companies. They work under the supervision of senior engineers and receive on-the-job training. Ask your school's career services office for help with the job search. Also find employment opportunities by searching the career sections and job boards of companies' Web sites. Information on job openings is also available on Web sites such as Engineerjobs.com, state employment offices, and at the federal Office of Personnel Management (https://www.usajobs.gov).
Manufacturing engineers with several years of experience advance to become senior engineers. They take on larger projects and handle more complex design and engineering issues. They may become managers, responsible for hiring and overseeing the work of teams of manufacturing engineers. They also advance by getting certification in specialized areas and going back to school for a master's degree in engineering. Some leave full-time positions to start their own consulting firms. Others become college professors.
Tips for Entry
Participate in an internship or cooperative education program in manufacturing engineering while in college to gain valuable experience. This will help you gain experience in the field, make valuable work connections, and could also lead to a job offer upon graduation.
Join professional associations such as the Society of Manufacturing Engineers (https://www.sme.org) for access to education programs, networking events, industry news, and job referrals.
Keep up with news and developments in the manufacturing engineering field by reading industry publications, such as Manufacturing Engineering, https://www.sme.org/manufacturing-engineering-magazine.
Find job listings and learn more about manufacturing engineering companies by searching online employment Web sites such as Engineer Jobs, https://www.engineerjobs.com as well as Indeed, Monster, and LinkedIn, among many others.
Visit the following Web sites for job listings: https://www.nspe.org/resources/career-center/job-board/job-board and https://careers.swe.org.