What Are the Qualities That Employers Look for in New Mechanical Engineers?

by Joseph Petrick

Mechanical engineering, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, is the broadest of the engineering disciplines. Virtually every technical area utilizes the services of a mechanical engineer. The training these engineers receive in college is broad-based and aimed at finding cost-effective solutions.


Employers look for mechanical engineers who are creative. Creativity enables an engineer to think outside the box in the search for practical solutions to various mechanical problems around them. For example, a company may require an engineer who can envision a new solution to providing a more energy-efficient welding machine or a heater that emits less smoke. It may also need someone to develop more cost-effective production methods.

Team Player

Employers need mechanical engineers who are team players and can cooperate with others on various projects. Modern engineers usually work together on projects and cooperation is integral to their success. The demand for people who possess this quality has increased in demand in the industry. You can acquire teamwork skills by participating in group projects or undertaking joint laboratory projects while in school.

Work Experience

Sloan Career Cornerstone Center states that employers prefer mechanical engineers who have practical experience. An experienced candidate saves the employer time and money that he would have spent training an employee in the basics of the job, such as safety and design. An experienced candidate is able to start work the day he starts. For example, a mechanical engineer with previous work experience in a refrigeration manufacturing firm can easily maintain a freezing unit in a food company. When seeking work experience as an engineering student, opt for a summer job, a co-op program or an internship.

Efficient Communicator

Employers need mechanical engineers with excellent communication skills, which will enable the engineer to effectively participate in team-based activities or projects. Excellent communication skills, both written and oral, are important for mechanical engineers when presenting ideas or project plans to bankers, other engineers or production personnel. Written communication helps you in noting down your ideas on PowerPoint before presenting them. Oral communication is important in presenting your ideas with clarity.

About the Author

Joseph Petrick has been a writer and editor since 2003. He writes career, business and education articles. His work has appeared in several online publications including Career Today. Petrick holds a Master of Arts in philosophy/economic anthropology from Pennsylvania State University.

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