CareerGPS

Mechanical Engineers
Summary Occupational Forecast Data for Mechanical Engineers
Employment Employment Change Average Annual Job Openings Wage & Training Levels
2018 2023 Numerical Percent New Jobs Replacement Jobs Total Median Hourly Median Annual Training Levels
1,122 1,243 121 10.78% 24 75 99 $45.74 $95,130 Bachelor's degree
Description: Perform engineering duties in planning and designing tools, engines, machines, and other mechanically functioning equipment. Oversee installation, operation, maintenance, and repair of such equipment as centralized heat, gas, water, and steam systems.
Staffing Pattern Data Forecast Data Source: EMSI (2nd Quarter 2018)

Occupation Details

The information in this section represents occupational characteristics included in O*NET which defines key features of an occupation as a standardized, measurable set of variables called "descriptors". These distinguishing characteristics of an occupation are described in greater detail in the O*NET Content Model. All items are listed in descending order of importance.

  • Read and interpret blueprints, technical drawings, schematics, and computer-generated reports.
  • Confer with engineers and other personnel to implement operating procedures, resolve system malfunctions, and provide technical information.
  • Research and analyze customer design proposals, specifications, manuals, and other data to evaluate the feasibility, cost, and maintenance requirements of designs or applications.
  • Specify system components or direct modification of products to ensure conformance with engineering design and performance specifications.
  • Research, design, evaluate, install, operate, and maintain mechanical products, equipment, systems and processes to meet requirements, applying knowledge of engineering principles.
  • Investigate equipment failures and difficulties to diagnose faulty operation, and to make recommendations to maintenance crew.
  • Assist drafters in developing the structural design of products using drafting tools or computer-assisted design (CAD) or drafting equipment and software.
  • Conduct research that tests and analyzes the feasibility, design, operation and performance of equipment, components and systems.
  • Recommend design modifications to eliminate machine or system malfunctions.
  • Develop and test models of alternate designs and processing methods to assess feasibility, operating condition effects, possible new applications and necessity of modification.
  • Develop, coordinate, and monitor all aspects of production, including selection of manufacturing methods, fabrication, and operation of product designs.
  • Write performance requirements for product development or engineering projects.

Knowledge

93%
Engineering and Technology - Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
90%
Design - Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
84%
Mechanical - Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
81%
Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
73%
Physics - Knowledge and prediction of physical principles, laws, their interrelationships, and applications to understanding fluid, material, and atmospheric dynamics, and mechanical, electrical, atomic and sub- atomic structures and processes.
73%
Production and Processing - Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
64%
Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
64%
English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
59%
Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
52%
Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
50%
Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.

Skills

75%
Complex Problem Solving - Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
72%
Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
69%
Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
69%
Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
69%
Mathematics - Using mathematics to solve problems.
69%
Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
65%
Science - Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
62%
Operations Analysis - Analyzing needs and product requirements to create a design.
60%
Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
60%
Active Learning - Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
60%
Systems Evaluation - Identifying measures or indicators of system performance and the actions needed to improve or correct performance, relative to the goals of the system.
60%
Systems Analysis - Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.
60%
Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
56%
Technology Design - Generating or adapting equipment and technology to serve user needs.
53%
Operation Monitoring - Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
53%
Quality Control Analysis - Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
53%
Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
53%
Time Management - Managing one's own time and the time of others.
50%
Troubleshooting - Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.
50%
Coordination - Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.

Abilities

75%
Mathematical Reasoning - The ability to choose the right mathematical methods or formulas to solve a problem.
75%
Information Ordering - The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
72%
Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
72%
Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
69%
Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
69%
Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
65%
Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
65%
Inductive Reasoning - The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
62%
Visualization - The ability to imagine how something will look after it is moved around or when its parts are moved or rearranged.
62%
Category Flexibility - The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
62%
Number Facility - The ability to add, subtract, multiply, or divide quickly and correctly.
60%
Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
60%
Selective Attention - The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.
60%
Speech Clarity - The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
56%
Perceptual Speed - The ability to quickly and accurately compare similarities and differences among sets of letters, numbers, objects, pictures, or patterns. The things to be compared may be presented at the same time or one after the other. This ability also includes compa
56%
Flexibility of Closure - The ability to identify or detect a known pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) that is hidden in other distracting material.
56%
Written Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
56%
Fluency of Ideas - The ability to come up with a number of ideas about a topic (the number of ideas is important, not their quality, correctness, or creativity).
56%
Speech Recognition - The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
56%
Originality - The ability to come up with unusual or clever ideas about a given topic or situation, or to develop creative ways to solve a problem.
53%
Far Vision - The ability to see details at a distance.
50%
Visual Color Discrimination - The ability to match or detect differences between colors, including shades of color and brightness.

Work Activities

88%
Interacting With Computers - Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
78%
Getting Information - Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
77%
Making Decisions and Solving Problems - Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
77%
Analyzing Data or Information - Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
76%
Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates - Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
73%
Processing Information - Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
72%
Documenting/Recording Information - Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
72%
Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings - Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
68%
Estimating the Quantifiable Characteristics of Products, Events, or Information - Estimating sizes, distances, and quantities; or determining time, costs, resources, or materials needed to perform a work activity.
66%
Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge - Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
66%
Thinking Creatively - Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.
66%
Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events - Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
65%
Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work - Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
65%
Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards - Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
65%
Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships - Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
62%
Communicating with Persons Outside Organization - Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.
60%
Drafting, Laying Out, and Specifying Technical Devices, Parts, and Equipment - Providing documentation, detailed instructions, drawings, or specifications to tell others about how devices, parts, equipment, or structures are to be fabricated, constructed, assembled, modified, maintained, or used.
59%
Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material - Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
58%
Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others - Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.
58%
Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People - Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.
54%
Provide Consultation and Advice to Others - Providing guidance and expert advice to management or other groups on technical, systems-, or process-related topics.
Title Job Zone Four: Considerable Preparation Needed
Overall Experience A considerable amount of work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is needed for these occupations. For example, an accountant must complete four years of college and work for several years in accounting to be considered qualified.
Job Training Employees in these occupations usually need several years of work-related experience, on-the-job training, and/or vocational training.
Job Zone Examples Many of these occupations involve coordinating, supervising, managing, or training others. Examples include accountants, sales managers, database administrators, teachers, chemists, environmental engineers, criminal investigators, and special agents.
Education Most of these occupations require a four-year bachelor's degree, but some do not.

Interests

Investigative - Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
Realistic - Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outsi
Conventional - Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.

Work Styles

Attention to Detail - Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Analytical Thinking - Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
Dependability - Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Initiative - Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
Persistence - Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
Cooperation - Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
Innovation - Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.
Adaptability/Flexibility - Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.

Work Values

Recognition - Occupations that satisfy this work value offer advancement, potential for leadership, and are often considered prestigious. Corresponding needs are Advancement, Authority, Recognition and Social Status.
Achievement - Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
Independence - Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
Working Conditions - Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions. Corresponding needs are Activity, Compensation, Independence, Security, Variety and Working Conditions.