Manufacturing engineers are the key to the success of a product being made on time and with quality.
They understand how the factory floor functions and how to work with product designers to insure the product is optimized for manufacturability.
But what does a manufacturing engineer do all day? We thought it might be useful to walk through a day in their life.
Last year, the website Lifehacker featured an interview with a manufacturing engineer for a commercial electronics maker who outlined what their job entails:
- Creating plans and instructions detailing precisely how assembly lines should be built using the tools and machinery on the manufacturing floor.
- Working floor support to answer questions and help solve problems brought by floor personnel. That could mean issues with equipment, trouble with hardware, questions about work instructions. “Manufacturing engineers solve the problems on the floor to keep product moving,” the engineer told Lifehacker.
- Programming machinery used to work on hardware. “Programming” in this case doesn’t refer to coding, but rather telling the machine what to do and saving those settings. Many simpler pieces of automation equipment use X, Y, and Z coordinates and specific actions to execute each step.
- Searching for ways to improve processes, and finding, researching and testing new equipment, and conducting ROI analysis to determine whether it would benefit the company.
“Manufacturing is great because it lets you use your technical skills, your problem solving skills and your communication skills,” says GE Aviation engineer Becky Miller in a video for the Association for Manufacturing Technology. “And at the end of the day, I get to see a plane fly and I know that I’m a part of that.”
She describes an environment where an error “the size of a human hair” can make a difference. Miller said part of her job involves product audits, checking every characteristic of her material to make sure the company’s products are conforming when they head to market.
At the same time, being a manufacturing engineer is not a job that simply involves working with machines or staring at a computer to analyze data.
“My job is actually very people-oriented,” Miller says. “I work with groups of people every day to resolve problems. To get everyone to work together on a problem, typically I like to make sure everybody agrees that there is a problem.”
And even though the job entails making products that need to be uniform, Miller argues that the job is still different every day, with new challenges with each new assignment.
If you’re searching for a contract manufacturer whose engineers will oversee your product from beginning to end, Mars International can help.
Our team of innovative manufacturing engineers handles the design and coordination of our production processes from start to finish. Their goal: to develop ways to make products with the required functionality at the lowest cost, without sacrificing quality or environmental friendliness.
Our engineers also serve as a go-between for our product development teams and manufacturing organizations. They understand the nuances of each step in the manufacturing process, and know what it will take to make your products unique, efficient and reliable.
Contact us today to learn more about how our engineers can help bring your next product to market.