Electrical Engineering Job Description
Electrical engineers are vital to the design, development and maintenance of electrical control systems, equipment and machinery. They work in a wide range of sectors and sub-disciplines, including the power, telecommunications, construction, transport and other industries, striving towards ensuring electrical systems aren’t only fit for purpose, but also meet required specifications.
From the initial concept and first design, to the testing, implementation and handover stage, they’re usually involved in projects from the very beginning and are crucial to making sure assignments get completed on time.
It’s worth noting that electrical engineering is slightly different to electronic engineering. Despite often being used interchangeably, electrical engineering is primarily concerned with large-scale electrical systems, whereas electronic engineering tends to be more involved with small-scale systems and circuits.
What Does an Electrical Engineer Do?
Electrical engineers are incredibly important to the world we live in today. They help to provide systems and machinery that we simply couldn’t live without and are needed to help businesses in a wide range of sectors thrive.
The nature of their job and industry they work in will largely impact their working environment, but electrical engineers can expect to spend the majority of their time in offices, workshops, laboratories and factories. For some electrical engineers, there’s also an opportunity to work overseas, either as a consultant or as a contractor.
The usual day-to-day responsibilities of an electrical engineer will depend on their specific role and industry they’re associated with, but here we’ve given an overview of their daily tasks:
- Design and develop electrical products in line with customer requirements and ensure they comply with the relevant/latest regulations.
- Evaluate the efficiency of electrical systems, machinery, components and products.
- Apply knowledge of electricity to design testing methods for different systems. This will allow them to understand the capabilities of electrical systems and machinery.
- Understand design specifications and technical drawings.
- Assure product quality by conducting thorough and reliable tests.
- Research/test manufacturing methods and materials.
- Use computer-assisted engineering and design software to create technical plans.
- Utilise design software to create prototypes of products.
- Monitor a product and improve on future design.
- Service and maintain electrical systems.
- Collect, analyse, interpret and summarise data into written product reports.
- Estimate project timescales, as well as material, construction and labour costs.
- Liaise with client/other members working on the project.
- Attend educational/technical training and workshops to maintain professional knowledge.
- Attend meetings and give presentations to managers/clients.
Electrical Engineering Qualifications
The vast majority of employers tend to prefer candidates who have a degree in either electrical or electronic engineering, demonstrating their understanding and knowledge of the technical industry. However, this isn’t always essential as some businesses employ individuals with degrees in related subjects, such as mechanical, electromechanical or production engineering.
If you’re wanting to go far, make sure the qualification you obtain is accredited by a professional body, the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET), for example. This’ll help you to achieve the incorporated engineer (IEng) or chartered engineer (CEng) status in the future.
Employers are also likely to consider candidates with a HND (Higher National Diploma) or foundation degree, as long as they show enthusiasm and passion for continuing to learn. Many university courses allow those with a HND or foundation degree to enter directly into the final year of a degree programme, so this is something to consider to help boost the chances of employment.
Electrical Engineering Apprenticeships
Some organisations recruit for apprentices, which is the perfect entry route for those that don’t currently have a HND or degree. These employers select candidates for sponsorship degrees to ensure they understand the key principles of the industry and make sure they reach full engineer level. Relevant A-levels and experience of working in the industry is usually required to become an electrical engineer apprentice.
Electrical Engineer Salary
The salary of electrical engineers based in the UK will vary depending on experience, location and the size of the employer, so the below figures are to be intended as a guide only.
- Graduates and newly qualified electrical engineers can expect to earn between £20,000 – £25,000.
- The salary of more experienced electrical engineers can differ significantly, typically from £30,000 – £50,000.
- Senior engineers and those with chartered status can expect to earn as high as £60,000, sometimes even more.
Electrical Engineering Jobs
Here at BMR Solutions, we specialise in pairing talented individuals within the engineering and manufacturing industries with some of the most reputable organisations in the south west of the UK.
So if you’re an electrical engineer looking for your next career move, please don’t hesitate to send us your CV or get in touch with a member of our team today – we’ll learn a bit more about you as well as understand your qualifications and experience, and help you to find an exciting career perfectly suited to your skill set.
Be sure to also view our current job vacancies to see if any of our current listings interest you.