A Chief Engineer is much like an Engineering Manager. Their primary duties revolve around managing and supervising a team of Engineers who might be working on projects like the construction of a bridge or even the development of a new automobile. Just some of the daily tasks of a Chief Engineer could include proposing budgets and financial plans for a major engineering project, recruiting new staff, checking on the work of other engineers and ensuring that their specific engineering project goes according to plan and according to schedule.
Chief Engineer Education Requirements
In order to become a Chief Engineer, it will take a minimum of a bachelor's degree in engineering. Many Chief Engineers typically also have a master's degree either in engineering or in business management. Along with these formal qualifications, Chief Engineers should be well-spoken, clear communicators, effective leaders and organized individuals. Being tech-savvy is also helpful, thanks to the number of engineering software programs used in most projects.
Chief Engineer Job Market
The good news for aspiring Chief Engineers is that job demand for this particular position is forecast to grow by as much as 7 percent over the next decade. Every year between now and 2022, there will be approximately 6,060 new job openings available to Chief Engineers in the United States. This is impressive growth, particularly for a managerial position. It bodes well for this career as well as for similar executive positions like that of Engineering Vice President, Managing Director and Senior Executive.
Chief Engineer Salary
As of 2012, the median salary for a Chief Engineer in the United States was $124,870, making it a lucrative career choice for the right candidates. Aspiring Chief Engineers should understand that many factors contribute to the salary of each individual. The industry of employment is also a significant factor. Chief Engineers working in mining, quarries or oil extraction can earn even more than this average figure. Those in the public sector tend to earn less.