Mechanical Project Engineer Job Description
Mechanical Project Engineers design and develop mechanical systems. Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines, so a variety of industries employ Mechanical Project Engineers. Manufacturing-based industries are the biggest employers. This includes the automotive industry, the aviation industry, and the military. Mechanical project engineers also design and develop systems we use in our home every day, such as heating, cooling, and plumbing systems. Mechanical Project Engineers perform a variety of duties that range from developing project blueprints using CAD software to conducting market research to use for guidance in creating more effective systems.
The role of a Mechanical Project Engineer is typically a supervisory position. They delegate tasks to junior engineers and any other employee involved in the manufacturing process. A fair portion of their work takes place in a typical office environment, but part of their job involves being present on the manufacturing floor and ensuring everything is going to plan. According to the National Bureau of Labor Statistics, the demand for Mechanical Engineers, which includes Mechanical Project Engineers, is set to rise 5 percent through 2024.
Mechanical Project Engineer Duties and Responsibilities
Mechanical Project Engineers perform several duties and responsibilities in their quest to design and develop complex mechanical systems.
Work With Product Development Teams
Mechanical Project Engineers don’t specialize in product design, but their mechanical engineering background makes them an important part of the design process. They add a pragmatic viewpoint to complement the creative viewpoints of the product development team.
Oversee Product Blueprint Design
Mechanical Project Engineers oversee, and sometimes complete, the design of product blueprints using Computer-Aided Design (CAD) and Computer-Aided Engineering (CAE) software.
Confirm with Local, State and Company Engineering Standards
Mechanical Project Engineers are responsible for quality assurance. While this duty is important for all industries, it is crucial for industries with strict regulations. They make sure everyone working on a given project keeps everything up to standard.
Ensure Projects get Completed on Time and Budget
Mechanical Project Engineers are part Project Manager. They are responsible for making sure the projects they’re assigned get completed on time, which involves managing both machines and employees.
Design and Implement Policies and Procedures
Mechanical Project Engineers create the instructions necessary for systems to function. This includes things like manufacturing maintenance policies and procedures, as well as the specific instructions for bringing a given product to life.
Mechanical Project Engineer Skills
Mechanical Project Engineers have to possess a blend of technical and soft skills to succeed in their position. They need technical knowledge of mechanical engineering and project management, as well as the communication skills necessary to manage the human component of a project. Today’s Mechanical Project Engineers need to be tech-savvy, as most designing is done with CAD and CAE software. Those who enjoy working in a collaborative environment and have the ability to organize and prioritize succeed in this position. The following are the skills that are in the highest demand among employers of Mechanical Project Engineers.
- Using CAD and CAE software to design product blueprints
- Developing systems necessary to produce a given product at scale
- Prioritizing and delegating tasks to team members to maximize efficiency
- Analyzing equipment and employee performance to provide reports to superiors
- Observing and refining the design and production process based on feedback
Tools of the Trade
The specific tools used by Mechanical Project Engineers can vary depending on the industry of employment. The following are a couple of general tools used by all
Mechanical Project Engineers.
CAD and CAE Software – Computer-Aided Design and Computer-Aided Engineering software is used to design and engineer products.
Manufacturing Equipment – The specific manufacturing equipment will vary based on industry, but all Mechanical Project Engineers deal directly with equipment on the manufacturing floor.
Mechanical Project Engineer Education and Training
Mechanical Project Engineers usually have a Bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering, construction management, or project management. They learn areas of knowledge such as the basics of mechanical engineering, organizational management, how to manage a team and how to delegate tasks. Most employers require Mechanical Project Engineers to be certified by the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying.
Mechanical Project Engineer Salary
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Mechanical Engineers, which includes Mechanical Project Engineers, have a national median salary of $84,190 per year. Those in the top 10 percent earn more than $131,350, and those in the bottom 10 percent earn less than $54,420.
Mechanical Project Engineer Resources
Are you interested in learning more about Mechanical Project Engineer as a career path? The list of resources below is a compilation of books, blogs, and professional organizations related to Mechanical Engineering.
National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying – The NCEES is a non-profit organization that oversees the licensure process for all types of engineers. Licensure requirements vary on a state-by-state basis, and their website has all of that information. The website also contains links to test preparation materials, as well as links to continuing education resources.
The American Society of Mechanical Engineers – The American Society of Mechanical Engineers was founded in 1880 and has since spread to over 150 countries with over 130,000 total members. Their website has a regularly updated news section and a link to ASME magazine. They also offer a plethora of professional certifications. This is an excellent organization for new and experienced Mechanical Project Engineers alike.
The Institution of Mechanical Engineers – Founded in 1847, the Institution of Mechanical Engineers has since grown to over 115,000 members in over 140 countries. Membership includes access to several training programs and courses, as well as several local, national and international events scattered throughout the year.
iCrank.com – Although it isn’t the most aesthetically pleasing site, it contains some good information on designing mechanical systems. It also contains several links to software that simplifies the life of Mechanical Engineers.
Rubber Band Engineer by Lance Akiyama – Who said all resources have to be boring? This book by Lance Akiyama is filled with fun engineering projects that will help you get in touch with your creative side. These are all projects you can do with minimal engineering experience.