Mechanical Engineering jobs and careers

Mechanical Engineering is an engineering discipline that combines engineering physics and mathematics principles with materials science to design, analyse, manufacture, and maintain products and mechanical-based systems.

Why consider a career as a Mechanical Engineer?

A career in mechanical engineering exposes you to an array of amazing industries. Your work can have you working on the design of new product innovation from driverless cars to the design of life-saving medical & scientific devices, including the latest electron microscopes used by scientists to help develop vaccines. Some of the greatest inventors are skilled Mechanical Design Engineers!

What a job or career in Mechanical Engineering may entail…

As a Mechanical Engineer, you often have the opportunity to work across the full product life cycle from requirements stages, through to design, production and manufacture. Alongside this, you will innovate existing tech and detail potential improvements. Mechanical Engineers use 2D and 3D computer-aided software to assist with the design stages of products and systems. They can also utilise thermodynamic, materials science and simulation engineering techniques, to help build robust designs, for example, engine turbines that can resist very high levels of stress and tolerance without failing.

As a senior – you will have a mix of hands-on design, innovation, and leadership skills. You will often be charged with liaising with senior management about the existing issues with tech and the ways in which the team can push the technology forward. You will often also be charged with leading and mentoring the more junior Engineers in the team. Depending on the company, you may also be tasked with compiling and presenting on the current state of your product life-cycle and how you intend to take it forward.

Typical role titles include

Mechanical Design Engineer
Mechanical Engineer
Electro-Mechanical Engineer
Product Design Engineer
Mechatronics Engineer
Microfluidics Engineer
Stress Engineer

Career progression example

Junior Design Engineer
Mechanical Design Engineer
Senior Mechanical Engineer
Principal Engineer
Engineering Manager

Salary Benchmarks

At an entry-level, Junior Mechanical Engineers can take home around £25K – £35K. This often comes down to speciality, location, and whether you pursued a masters. At the mid-level, Engineers normally sit between £40K and £50K. Seniors normally earn between £50K and £60K. Principal Engineers are normally £60K+.

Is it right for me? The skills it takes…

The following technologies and skills often appear on job descriptions;

Mechanical Engineering, 3D design (using software tools such as Solidworks, PTC Creo, Catia and AutoCAD), CAE, Thermodynamics, Materials selection, Stress, Geometric Dimensioning & Tolerancing, and Data Analysis (Matlab, ANSYS, Labview).

What qualifications does it take?

Often clients will look for candidates to hold a Bsc in engineering, product design, mathematics, physics or computer science. Otherwise, they will look for candidates who have undertaken an apprenticeship related to the field. A technical background, be it academic or industry-related, is normally necessary to secure a role in the field.

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