Manufacturing and Production Careers | Manufacturing Product Design Engineer

Manufacturing Product Design Engineer

Career Area: Design, Media, and Writing

Occupation Group: Product Design

Salary

Percentile wages tell how much a certain percentage of an overall population in a geographic area or within a given industry or field makes. The percentile wage estimate is the value of a wage below which a certain percent of workers fall.

An example would be the 25th percentile, 25 percent of workers employed in that occupation earn less and 75 percent earn more than the estimated wage value. At the 75th percentile, 75 percent of workers employed in that occupation earn less and 25 percent earn more than the estimated wage value.

A typical Manufacturing Product Design Engineer earns the following wages (national and state):

State

The average salary in North Carolina for those pursuing this career is $86,929

*The salaries depicted here are representative of the range of salaries posted in job listings over the past year. Living wage in North Carolina is $30,000.

National

The average salary in the United States for those pursuing this career is $89,972

*The salaries depicted here are representative of the range of salaries posted in job listings over the past year. Living wage in North Carolina is $30,000.

What Does a Professional in this Career Do?

Responsible for the design of a new product, with specific reference to the manufacturing processes behind it. May also be partially responsible for engineering of materials, graphic design, ergonomics and aesthetics of the product.

Employment Trends

The job demand and job growth statistics shown here were derived from job posts over the past year. Expected job growth projections are extrapolated from year-over-year job post listing history.

Job demand and job growth is expected at the following rates:

LocationGrowth
North Carolina14+7.6%
Nationwide232+4.3%

Skills

A professional in this position typically utilizes the following skills in the course of everyday work in this exciting and challenging field:

Baseline Skills

The following are baseline skills every Manufacturing Product Design Engineer is expected to have in order to experience success in this field:

  • Problem Solving: Problem solving consists of using generic or ad hoc methods, in an orderly manner, for finding solutions to problems.
  • Communication Skills: The ability to convey information to another effectively and efficiently.
  • Teamwork / Collaboration: Experience working in collaborative efforts with a team to achieve a common goal or to complete a task in the most effective and efficient way.
  • Creativity: Mental characteristic that allows a person to think outside of the box, which results in innovative or different approaches to a particular task.
  • Organizational Skills: Experience with a systematic process of structuring, integrating, co-ordinating task goals, and activities to resources in order to attain objectives.

Specialized Skills

These skills are specific to working in this career:

  • Design for Manufacture/Design for Assembly (DFM/DFA): Design for manufacturability (also sometimes known as design for manufacturing or DFM) is the general engineering practice of designing products in such a way that they are easy to manufacture.
  • Product Design: Product design as a verb is to create a new product to be sold by a business to its customers.
  • Mechanical Engineering: Mechanical Engineering, is the discipline that applies engineering, physics, and materials science principles to design, analyze, manufacture, and maintain mechanical systems.
  • Product Development: In business and engineering, new product development (NPD) covers the complete process of bringing a new product to market.
  • SolidWorks: Working experience of SolidWorks, which is a solid modeler, and utilizes a parametric feature-based approach which was initially developed by PTC (Creo/Pro-Engineer) to create models and assemblies. The software is written on Parasolid-kernel.

Distinguishing Skills

Any Manufacturing Product Design Engineer that possesses the following skills will stand out against the competition:

  • PTC Creo: Working experience of PTC Creo, which is a family or suite of Computer-aided design (CAD) apps supporting product design for discrete manufacturers and is developed by PTC. The suite consists of apps, each delivering a distinct set of capabilities for a user role within product development. Creo runs on Microsoft Windows and provides apps for 3D CAD parametric feature solid modeling, 3D direct modeling, 2D orthographic views, Finite Element Analysis and simulation, schematic design, technical illustrations, and viewing and visualization.
  • 3D Printing / Additive Manufacturing (AM): Working experience of 3D Printing / Additive Manufacturing (AM), which refers to processes in which material is joined or solidified under computer control to create a three-dimensional object, with material being added together (such as liquid molecules or powder grains being fused together). 3D printing is used in both rapid prototyping and additive manufacturing (AM).
  • Design for Six Sigma: Design for Six Sigma (DFSS) is a business-process management method related to traditional Six Sigma.
  • Automotive Engineering: Working experience of Automotive Engineering. Automotive engineering, along with aerospace engineering and marine engineering, is a branch of vehicle engineering, incorporating elements of mechanical, electrical, electronic, software and safety engineering as applied to the design, manufacture and operation of motorcycles, automobiles and trucks and their respective engineering subsystems.
  • Pro/ENGINEER: PTC Creo, formerly known as Pro/ENGINEER, is a 3D CAD/CAM/CAE feature-based, associative solid modeling software.

Salary Boosting Skills

A professional who wishes to excel in this career path may consider developing the following highly valued skills:

  • Medical Device Design: Working experience of Medical Device Design. A medical device is any apparatus, appliance, software, material, or other article whether used alone or in combination, including the software intended by its manufacturer to be used specifically for diagnostic and/or therapeutic purposes and necessary for its proper application intended by the manufacturer to be used for human beings for the purpose of diagnosis, prevention, monitoring, treatment, or alleviation of disease.
  • Production Part Approval Process (PPAP): Working experience of the Production Part Approval Process (PPAP), which is a valuable tool for establishing confidence in component suppliers and their production processes.
  • Supplier Development: Supplier Development is the process of collaborating with suppliers to improve their processes and product manufacturing capabilities.
  • Engineering Change Orders: Working experience of Engineering Change Orders. An engineering change order (ECO) is a documentation packet that outlines the proposed change, lists the product or part(s) that would be affected and requests review and approval from the individuals who would be impacted or charged with implementing the change.
  • Process Validation: Process Validation is the analysis of data gathered throughout the design and manufacturing of a product in order to confirm that the process can reliably output products of a determined standard.

Experience

This position typically requires the following level of experience. The numbers presented in the pie charts below were derived from actual job posts over the past year. Not all job postings list experience requirements.

Experience Required%
0 to 2 years21%
3 to 5 years63%
6 to 8 years11%

Many of the programs offered through NC State are designed for working professionals who need additional credentials to enhance existing work experience.

Students who do not have the expected level of experience may wish to look into internship and employment opportunities.

Common Job Titles

It is possible to find work in this field in positions commonly listed as the following job titles:

  • Product Design Engineer
  • Senior Product Engineer
  • Lead Product Engineer
  • Product Engineer II
  • Engineer - Product Design

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