Industrial Engineering Technician Job Description
Industrial engineering technicians work under the supervision of a senior industrial engineer. They are often tasked with solving problems related to reducing production costs, planning workflows, and designing the layout of machinery within a factory.
Industrial engineering technicians perform ‘time and motion’ studies, where they observe workers on the job. By monitoring the time and energy it takes workers to perform certain tasks, they are able to identify areas of inefficiency in a process.
When they find a process that could be improved, these technicians work with industrial engineers to develop new floor layouts or procedures that will increase efficiency and improve production costs or product quality.
Since a lot of the work that industrial engineering technicians do requires them to observe a manufacturing process, they normally need to work on site at the location where a product is being manufactured or services are being provided.
Nearly all industrial engineers work in manufacturing facilities. Some of the most common places of employment are in automobile manufacturing, plastics manufacturing, aerospace manufacturing, and electric component manufacturing. There are many opportunities for in employment in other industries as well.
Most industrial engineering technicians work full time, and they are normally able to keep a regular schedule during normal business hours.
How to Become an Industrial Engineering Technician
Most industrial engineering technicians have an associate’s degree or certificate. Certificates are offered by technical and vocational schools. Associate’s degrees are offered by technical colleges and community colleges.
An associate’s degree includes liberal arts education, and the technical courses are more theory based than hands on. At a technical school, the classes are very hands on, and the coursework is focused on practical training.
Community colleges and technical schools both have their advantages and disadvantages. Most of the coursework in a community college isn’t directly related to your training, but the good news is that a lot of the credits will transfer should you decide to pursue a four year degree later on. At a technical school, you will learn lots of skills that translate to the working world, but the credits will rarely transfer to a four year university.
Whether you decide to pursue an associate’s or a certificate is a personal decision. The answer will depend on what your lifelong education and career goals are.
If you’re still in high school and you’re considering a career as an industrial engineering technician, taking math and science courses can help prepare you. Taking computer classes can also be helpful, since these technicians rely on CAD / CAM software for a lot of their work.
There are currently 62,500 industrial engineering technicians in the United States, with 1,460 new industrial engineering technician job openings created each year.
Industrial Engineering Technician jobs are not expected to see much growth beyond their current levels in the next decade.
Industrial Engineering Technician Salaries
Industrial Engineering Technician salaries can vary depending on your experience, the location, company, industry, and benefits provided. Nationwide, most industrial engineering technicians make between $39,200 – $62,100 per year, or $18.86 – $29.87 per hour.