Career in Automobile Engineering
As more and more people need vehicles for personal or business reasons, there comes an increased demand for automobile engineers. These are people who cover anything that are related to the manufacturing process of motors-from design, manufacturing to quality control.
There can be plenty of job descriptions for positions suitable for automobile engineers, but all of them can be classified into three main categories. These include design, production and development.
Design: As the term implies, the main role of the automobile engineer is to come up with a blueprint that will be the basis for the final product. Everything that's related to how the vehicle will appear and function will be taken into consideration. For example, since there are many people who are looking for environment-friendly cars, a designer cum automobile engineer may have to incorporate fuel cells in his design. He also needs to keep in mind the materials that should be used, as well as the security features of the vehicle.
Since the field is design, it's expected that the automobile engineer will show superb creative skills, besides his technical expertise. He also needs to know how to use different kinds of software, which can help him produce a much clearer and easier-to-follow designs.
Production: The automobile engineer may also be in charge or part of the overall production of the vehicles. He may be tasked to operate certain types of machine and equipment and make some adjustments whenever necessary. Moreover, he also needs to take control of the production schedule and cost planning. Those that have wide range of experience can work in quality control, where their main job is to ensure that the vehicle's design is properly followed.
Development: Those that belong to the development stage are automobile engineers that know how to analyse the blueprints. Before they are finally forwarded to production, there should be simulation tests and creation of prototypes. This is to ensure that everything-weaknesses and strengths-is properly assessed. If there are flaws, automobile engineers should be able to make the necessary corrections.
Popular Types of Automobile Engineer Jobs
A certificate or a degree in automobile engineering will help you land any of the following jobs:
Supplier Warranty Recovery Specialist: The main job of the automobile engineer will be to contact and manage suppliers. He is also in charge in making sure that the warranty agreements are properly followed and that reports of warranty are given to suppliers on a regular basis. Furthermore, it's his job to produce warranty contracts to different suppliers, working alongside the Strategic Souring Department.
Underbody Engineer: The underbody engineer is required to focus on the design and development of underbody components and systems, such as chassis, fuel, and interior trims. He also needs to have a solid background in cost planning. It also means that he has to have excellent technical and creative skills and can work together with the manufacturing department.
Senior Production Engineer: A senior production automobile engineer may have to use his experience, expertise, and knowledge in two areas: production and manufacturing. For one, he has to take care and monitor different types of products that may be assigned to him. He has to keep track with their designs, development, and production, even a little bit of sales. On the other hand, he will have to take care of the manufacturing process of these products, making sure that the designs are followed to a T. He normally has some people working for him; thus, he has to exhibit excellent supervisory skills.
Quality Engineer: The quality automobile engineer has to ensure that there will be no flaws or defects as much as possible to the finished products. Otherwise, he needs to make some recommendations to other departments, such as to production and development. The customer will be his utmost priority, and hence, their safety and demand should be met. He also has the responsibility to uphold standards when it comes to the products produced.
Mechanical Design Engineer: As a mechanical design engineer, your main role is to produce or come up with designs according to the demands or the specifications of the clients or customers. He may also have to be the one to identify the parts that he needs to incorporate to his designs, as well as create bills of materials that should be cost effective for the company. He may have to work with certain applications such as CAD, so he also has to have the skills to operate these kinds of computer-aided software.
Driver Instrumentation Engineer: This can be a very challenging but fun job to do for an automobile engineer. He is going to be in charge of the hardware products that are integrated into the vehicles. This means that he is the one who's going to design the digital circuit design and other instrumentation products of the vehicle, such as LCD display, multiple stepper, complex display, and immobilizers, to name a few.
Looking for Better Opportunities
1. Know the current demands of employers: The needs of employers may vary, but usually, they're looking for someone with not only the degree but also the experience. Hence, you may want to start as an engineering technician first. You also have at least basic background on other engineering subjects, such as electrical engineering, production engineering, and mechanical engineering, among others.
2. Take up trainings to improve your craft: Experience can help you land a good job, but if you are thinking of rising among the ranks, you need to back it up with constant training and development. Fortunately, a lot of these vehicle manufacturing companies are already offering them to their engineers. Sometimes they are even mandated to attend to them. But you can still choose to do things your own way by taking up short courses. If you belong to an association, you can ask if they are sponsoring some workshops or seminars for automobile engineers.