Manufacturing Engineers: 5 Tips to Help You Get Your Dream Job
Getting the perfect engineering job takes time and planning, even though there are plenty of manufacturing engineer jobs across the country. On any given day, you can search openings for manufacturing engineering jobs such as these:
- Electrical engineer
- Metallurgical engineer
- Chemical engineer
- Project engineer
- Industrial engineer
- Controls engineer
- Engineering technician
By using the right strategies, you can land your dream job as a manufacturing engineer, and these tips can help you get started.
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1. Make Sure Your Resume Is a Masterpiece
Your resume is not only your introduction; it's also your only way to get your foot in the door, so make sure it's a masterpiece. It needs to represent you at your best, but it also needs to be specific in showcasing the strengths that will get your hired. For example, highlighting the fact that you're bilingual might be helpful in some regions of the country but not in others; so be sure to highlight other relevant skills as well, such as your proficiency with engineering software, or your talent in mathematics (always a plus for engineers). In your resume, focus on these areas:
- Experience: If you're newly graduated, your experience might be thin, so be sure to include practical experience, internships, and projects you completed in college, as well as awards you've received. If you've already had professional experience, be sure to include the companies you've worked for and, if applicable, the projects you've worked on in a professional capacity. It's important to have letters of reference from your supervisors as well.
- Skills: These should include proficiency with engineering hardware/software and other relevant tools.
- Professional Credentials: List relevant and industry-specific degrees, licenses, certifications, and training programs.
Pay close attention to each company's manufacturing engineer job description. This can help you provide the right information in your resume.
2. Do Your Homework on Your Ideal Companies
Identify the companies you want to work for. Once you've narrowed the field, do your homework by learning about each company's history, corporate culture, mission statement, staff requirements, and company practices.
If you're still in college, schedule an appointment with a member of the management team so you can introduce yourself and explain why you want to work for the company after graduation. Also, tailor your resume to showcase aspects of your training, skills, and personality that are strongly valued in that particular company culture.
One more tip: Pay close attention to each company's manufacturing engineer job description. This can help you provide the right information in your resume.
3. Network With Potential Colleagues
You can boost your prospects by networking with other manufacturing engineers across the country. Keep up-to-date with upcoming events in your field of interest, and be sure to attend as many industry/company shows and seminars as you can. Examples would be the Design for Manufacturing and Assembly seminar given by Boothroyd and Dewhurst as well as annual events hosted across the US by the Society of Manufacturing Engineers.
An active online presence in the engineering community will give you a stronger background and more credibility when it's time for your interview.
4. Boost Your Social Media Presence
By creating professional profile pages on sites such as LinkedIn and Facebook, you can introduce yourself to the engineering community. This is a great way to network with other engineers who can alert you when jobs are available. Plus, an active online presence in the engineering community will give you a stronger background and more credibility when it's time for your interview.
5. Ace the Interview
This is easier said than done, but if you've done your homework, developed a significant social media presence, networked with potential colleagues, and created a top-notch resume, you're more than halfway there. Here are tips for acing the interview:
- Be prepared for unorthodox questions. Engineering interviewers like to ask questions such as, "How does the start button on a computer work?" Don't fake it; if you don't know, then admit it, and add that you're willing to listen and learn.
- Be prepared to comment critically on software programs or tool applications. Your assessments reveal your breadth of knowledge.
- Be positive in your answers, don't criticize former employers/professors, and above all, practice your interview techniques with a friend or colleague.
By doing your homework and following these tips, you'll have a better chance of impressing your interviewers, beating out the competition, and ultimately winning your dream job as a manufacturing engineer.
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