The functional areas identified earlier can be used to categorize the myriad of job titles in the field of engineering. For example, a “reliability engineer” can hold a degree in almost any engineering discipline, but such an engineer is almost always found in the “production” or “operations” area of any industry. This means that whether the reliability engineer is employed in manufacturing, mining, or construction, he or she has responsibility for the methods, procedures, and quality control to successfully complete a project or put a product on the market. Reliability engineers maintain or improve the design of a product to ensure that it performs as intended.
Other engineering job titles include:
- Process engineers. Develop the series of actions (processes) to efficiently and economically make products such as computers; consumer products; candies, food, and drink; fuel; pharmaceuticals; medical devices; chemicals and plastics; and energy.
- Process controls engineers. Use statistics and engineering knowledge to manage and control the output from a production or manufacturing process.
- Product/production engineers. Apply engineering knowledge to the manufacturing process and to the methods of production. They plan and develop the tools, processes, machines, and equipment necessary to produce or manufacture products, as well as integrate facilities and systems to produce high-quality products safely and economically.
- Operations engineers. Concerned with the flow of materials and information. They use statistical models to describe behavior and evaluate effectiveness of manufacturing, supply chain, and service systems.
- Logistics engineers. Deal with purchasing, transporting, storing, distributing and warehousing raw materials, unfinished, “work-in-process,” and finished goods and products.
- Manufacturing engineers. Control the overall manufacturing process, including the processes and methods of production. They develop the plan for manufacturing.
- Systems engineers. Consider business and technical needs with the
goal of providing a quality solution that meets specified needs of all parties. They integrate engineering disciplines and specialties to design a holistic process that proceeds from concept to production to distribution and disposal.
- Quality engineers. Test and inspect procedures, using metrology, statistical methods, and cost concepts and techniques. They diagnose and correct improper quality-control practices with MIS systems and audits to detect
deficiencies and make corrections.
- Design engineers. Can be from almost every engineering discipline. They develop product concept and specifications and direct the design effort. They use input from sources such as manufacturing, purchasing, tool making, and packaging engineering.
- Consulting engineers. Represent the customer’s interests. Within industry, consulting engineers bring specialized knowledge to different business groups to help them address such issues as launching new products or solving problems that are impeding production. In the area of software engineering, consulting engineers ensure that the software under development meets the needs of the customer. There are also consulting engineers who represent client interests with architects, builders, and other suppliers engaged on a construction project.
- Materials management engineers. Assist organizations in managing inventory using strict controls and monitoring procedures from request to purchase to disposal. They also use forecasting and simulation models to solve inventory and control problems, as well as warehousing and transportation issues.
- Applications engineers. Engage in technical sales. They provide assurances to clients that the product will meet the client requirements. After the sale of the product, applications engineers assist in the integration of the product into the client’s setting or help to solve a problem with the product.
- Field engineers. Interact with clients on a daily basis to provide engineering or project-management services. They can also be involved in the installation of equipment at client sites, similar to applications engineers.