There are so many fantastic opportunities available in the job market for engineers. Those who possess the right qualifications and abilities to meet a specific job criteria may think they have the perfect CV, however, qualifications and technical skills alone are not enough to set you apart from other applicants, especially in today’s highly competitive job market.
Digital technologies are evolving, and this will no doubt have an impact on some engineering roles being made redundant in the future. As a result of this, employers will be alternatively looking more towards the interpersonal skills of engineering applicants. Engineers need to be prepared for this inevitable change and start thinking about developing essential soft skills now if they haven’t already.
Soft skills are an essential part of engineering and it is no longer enough to just rely solely on qualifications. It doesn’t matter what stage in your career you are at, soft skills will help give you the advantage you need when applying for a new engineering position. Here are some of the soft skills you should master if you want a long and successful career in engineering:
Good communication skills are essential in any engineering role and it comes in many different forms. Whether it is in person, written or online, engineers need to be able to handle all ways of communicating. You will find yourself dealing with various members of staff across the organisation you work for, as well as many clients. It maybe during a team meeting, explaining a solution to a client, problem solving or designing products. Either way, engineers need to have strong communication skills to be able to be able to deal with various situations.
There are very few engineering jobs where you will be working alone, so you need to be happy working as part of a team. It is good idea to make a potential employer aware of any significant past experiences where you have worked in a team and contributed to an idea or project.
You don’t have to be in a managerial position to take leadership. Successful leadership is about taking responsibility for your own actions and the team members that you work with. It’s about identifying other team members strengths as well as your own and utilizing them in order to build an efficient team. Set good examples to your piers and build each other up.
Employers look for engineers who can demonstrate they can prioritize their work effectively and meet deadlines. Where engineers let work get on top of them and take on too much, projects will suffer as a result.
If you can demonstrate your ability to problem solve, it will show the employer how you might deal with potential challenges. Being a good problem solver ensures the business will run more smoothly and any difficulties you stumble across at work will be solved quickly and effectively by considering pros and cons and various solutions.
Creativity is one of the most important soft skills an engineer can have. If you can think outside of the box, bring innovative solutions to the business and are not afraid to try new ways of doing things, this will set you apart from other engineers. Creative thinking as an engineer is just as important as the technical skills you possess.
You don’t have to be looking for a new job to start developing your soft skills. They are an essential part of being an engineer so no matter where you are on the career ladder, learning or further developing these skills is important. A good balance between technical and soft skills is what will set you apart and ensure you have a successful engineering career.