A process engineer knows how to design a production system that works with available materials and machines to satisfy a customer's request.

Are you organized, driven, and focused? Do you like to look at the big picture? Can you handle failure and learn from your mistakes? As a process engineer, you’ll need a tough mentality in order to create the perfect manufacturing process to satisfy your client. This position researches, designs, develops and tests manufacturing systems, working alongside other engineers, technicians, designers, and machinists on the production floor and in a laboratory.

Your job will have many facets and responsibilities. You will create blueprints and other instructions that specify where each machine will go and how it will operate to optimize efficiency. This will require extensive knowledge of mechanical and electrical engineering, as well as complex mathematical formulas. You’ll need strong computer skills to analyze software and process requirements. Creating tests that check the quality and function of the processes and then analyzing tests results will require creativity and patience. You’ll need to keep in mind budget and timeline restrictions throughout the project.

A process engineer needs strong leadership skills in order to make decisions that affect the entire manufacturing plant. Furthermore, you’ll work closely with the customer to make sure that the product you’ve created meets their expectations.

You’ll need at least a bachelor’s degree in a specific engineering field in order to apply for a job as a process engineer. Most companies will want previous experience, and many will look for additional certification or training courses that offer hands-on work.

Also Known As:

Materials Branch Chief, Materials Development Engineer, Materials Engineer, Materials Research Engineer, Materials and Processes Manager, Research Engineer, Test Engineer

Critical Skills


  • Analyze Test Results and Data
  • CAD or AutoCAD Software
  • Engineering and Technology
  • Manufacturing Systems
  • Mathematics
  • Mechanical Tools and Equipment


  • Active Listening
  • Communication - Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking/Oral
  • Critical Thinking Skills
  • Leadership
  • Management of Financial Resources
  • Management of Personnel Resources
  • Problem Solving
  • Process Management
  • Teamwork
  • Troubleshooting

Key Responsibilities

  • Prepare visual and written reports on project progress
  • Review product plans and make recommendations for project materials
  • Supervise and train technologists, technicians, and other engineers and scientists
  • Analyze product failure data and laboratory test results
  • Conduct or supervise tests on raw materials or finished products
  • Develop material and fabrication procedures
  • Design and direct the testing or control of processing procedures
  • Monitor product performance and longevity


  • Aerospace
  • Petroleum, Oil, Gas
  • Wind Energy

How to get this job

PMP Certification, practice excellent communication skills, learn software and system programs, get skills in technical writing.

Next Steps for this job

PMP Certification, LEAN/Six Sigma certification, gain thorough understanding of time management, take on project management work.

Specific job titles and duties vary by employer so check for details.