Industrial Engineer Job Description
An industrial engineer is an engineer who is concerned with designing industrial operations to improve machine, labor and material efficiency. An industrial engineer works to develop the way things are done within an organization by studying the organization’s operations to design and develop efficient plants and procedures.
An industrial engineer should be enthusiastic, observant, curious, analytical, quick-witted, creative, practical and prudent, and have the ability to plan and implement complex tasks. They should also be able to communicate effectively to explain complex information to others in the simplest of ways.
What does an Industrial Engineer do?
Industrial engineers may do some or all of the following:
- review the operations of an organization to find problems or rooms for improvement
- work with customers, management and workers to improve products and standards of productions
- design and develop efficient systems and methods
- develop strategies for manufacturing parts or products, or delivering services with maximum efficiency
- organize people and equipment to enable them function better
- establish and implement workplace safety procedures
- help management figure out how to evaluate employers and how much they should be paid
- help manufacturers find the most cost effective location for their production facilities
Where does an Industrial Engineer work?
Industrial engineers working conditions may differ from industry to industry, but they usually work normal office hours. They may also be on-call or work evenings and weekends in case of emergencies or to meet project deadlines. They work in offices, warehouses, manufacturing plants and hospitals. They may travel to observe processes and make assessments or to attend seminars or conferences.
What is Required to Become an Industrial Engineer ?
To become an industrial engineer, you need to have a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering or a related discipline. Industrial engineering is a branch of mechanical engineering.
Secondary school students interested in studying industrial engineering should take should take preparatory subjects such as chemistry, physics, computer, and mathematics, including algebra, trigonometry, and calculus.
Just to give you an idea, some of the classes that you’ll be taking in college may include:
- Engineering design
- Ergonomics and human factor
- Material science
- Fundamentals of electrical engineering
- Linear systems and differential equations
- Probability and Statistics
- Fundamentals of mechanics
- Manufacturing systems engineering
- Operation research
- Production control
- Design and analysis of production systems
- Management systems control
- Numerical analysis
- Linear regression analysis
An industrial engineer may specialize in any of the following fields:
- Financial Engineering
- Healthcare Engineering
- Human Factors & Ergonomics
- Manufacturing, Automation & Quality Control
- Operations Research
- Production and Management Systems
Knowledge, Skills and Attributes
Industrial engineers need to have:
- scientific aptitude
- creativity and innovation
- diligence and persistence
- manual dexterity
- physical and mental stamina
- good memory
- good eyesight
- good attention to detail
- good hand-eye coordination
- good listening and communication skills
- analytical and problem solving skills
- good judgment and decision making skills
- time management and organizational skills
- leadership skills
- math, computer and programming skills
- the ability to work well independently and in a team
- the ability to design and conduct experiments
- the ability to work well under pressure
- the ability to learn new skills and stay up-to-date with new developments in the field
- the ability to identify real world problems that can be solved by engineering principles and techniques
- the ability to apply the knowledge of science, mathematics and engineering to solve real word problems
- the ability to make good estimates
- knowledge of statistics
- knowledge of software used in the field such as SPSS and proModel
- knowledge of safety and safety rules
- knowledge of manufacturing systems design
- knowledge of production systems planning
Should I be an Industrial Engineer ?
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