Manufacturing systems engineers design and install manufacturing equipment and assembly production lines.
Salary range: £22,000 to £40,000
How to become a manufacturing systems engineer
You can get into this job through:
- a university course
- an apprenticeship
You could do a foundation degree, higher national diploma or degree in:
- manufacturing systems engineering
- electrical or electronic engineering
- mechanical engineering
- production or manufacturing engineering
If you’ve got another engineering qualification, you could take a postgraduate course like a master’s degree in manufacturing systems engineering.
You’ll usually need:
- 1 or 2 A levels, or equivalent, for a foundation degree or higher national diploma
- 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree
- a degree in a relevant subject for postgraduate study
- equivalent entry requirements
- student finance for fees and living costs
- university courses and entry requirements
You could start by doing a degree apprenticeship in systems engineering or manufacturing engineering.
You could also do a food and drink engineering higher or degreee apprenticeship, if you want to specialise in the food production industry.
You’ll usually need:
- 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship
What it takes
Skills and knowledge
- maths knowledge
- knowledge of engineering science and technology
- knowledge of manufacturing production and processes
- the ability to use, repair and maintain machines and tools
- design skills and knowledge
- to be thorough and pay attention to detail
- excellent verbal communication skills
- the ability to use your judgement and make decisions
- to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently
What you’ll do
You’ll help manage each phase of a project, overseeing the work of technicians and other professionals. Your duties could include:
- estimating costs for bids and tenders, covering equipment, time and labour
- building 3D models with computer aided design/manufacturing (CAD/CAM) software
- testing systems and analysing data to work out the most cost-effective production methods
- presenting plans to managers and clients for their approval
- installing new equipment and machinery
- investigating and fixing production problems
- drawing up operation and training guidelines
You could work in a factory, in an office or in a laboratory.
Career path and progression
You could find work in any branch of manufacturing, like automotive, food and drink, pharmaceuticals or electronics.
You could work towards incorporated or chartered engineer status.
As an incorporated engineer, you would specialise in the day-to-day management of engineering operations. At chartered level, you would have a more strategic role, planning, researching and developing new ideas and streamlining management methods.