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Industrial Engineer

Industrial engineers look for various avenues in which to eliminate wastefulness in production processes. They discover ways to use workers, machines, materials, information, and energy to make a product or provide a service in the most efficient way possible.

Industrial engineers often work on teams with other professionals, industrial engineering technicians, and production staff.

Industrial engineer’s find efficient ways to use workers, machines and materials to maximize business profits. They develop management control systems to make financial planning more efficient. They meet with clients about product specifications and negotiate with vendors and review the status of projects.

Industrial Engineer

What does an Industrial Engineer do?

Industrial Engineer
Industrial Engineer

Industrial engineers are responsible for optimizing processes and operations in a company to increase productivity, boost efficiency, reduce production costs and improve product quality, while ensuring the standards of employee safety, environmental standards and government regulations are met. They find new, faster and less wasteful methods in the production of goods to save the company valuable resources.

To find ways to reduce waste and improve performance, industrial engineers first study product requirements carefully. They then use mathematical methods and models to design manufacturing and information systems to meet those requirements in the most efficient way.

Industrial engineers apply their skills to many different situations – from manufacturing to business administration. For example, they design systems for:

  • Moving heavy parts within manufacturing plants
  • Getting goods from a company to customers, including finding the most profitable places to locate manufacturing or processing plants
  • Evaluating how well people do their jobs
  • Paying workers


In all these different projects, industrial engineers focus on how to get the work done most efficiently, balancing many factors such as time, number of workers needed, actions workers need to take, achieving the end with no errors, technology that is available, workers’ safety, environmental concerns, and cost.

  • Production Knowledge

    Review production schedules, engineering specifications, process flows, and other information to understand manufacturing and service methods and activities. Figure out how to manufacture parts or products or deliver services with maximum efficiency

  • Research & Analysis

    Researching problems by studying simulations, analyzing quantitative data and observing problems that need to be improved by actions, such as watching an assembly line in a factory.

  • Increase Efficiency

    Reducing waste by coordinating materials, machines and labor and creating systems that are more efficient in relation to energy consumption, cost and product quality.

  • Quality Assurance

    Enact quality control procedures to resolve production problems or minimize costs. Design control systems to coordinate activities and production planning in order to ensure that products meet quality standards



The estimated total pay for a industrial engineer is $84,659 per year.

0 - 1 Years

Industrial engineers with 0 - 1 years experience earn on average:

$86,588 per year
7 - 9 Years

Industrial engineers with 7 - 9 years experience earn on average:

$98,944 per year
4 - 6 Years

Industrial engineers with 4 - 6 years experience earn on average:

$94,488 per year
10+ Years

Industrial engineers with 10+ years experience earn on average:

$105,174 - $113,762 per year
1 - 3 Years

Industrial engineers with 1 - 3 years experience earn on average:

$89,436 per year

These are 2021 national salary averages and may fluctuate based on location.

What does the workplace for an Industrial Engineer look like?

Industrial engineers can work in a wide variety of settings each day. Many of them will regularly visit the area they are looking to design or add enhancements to. Once they’ve scanned and analyzed the environment closely, they’ll work in an office to design new plans and concepts that will improve the area. 

Many of them will design production processes and control systems for warehouses or factories. They’ll watch the workers complete tasks and will determine where improvements can be made to enhance their efficiencies and ease their workloads. They may also spend time in the warehouses or factories meeting with employees to identify problems they face with their work. They’ll then draw up plans to improve these issues.

How to Become an Industrial Engineer?

Industrial Engineer

An industrial engineer is expected to have certain educational qualifications. Usually, they need a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering or a related field that includes coursework in engineering principles, mechanics, mathematics and statistical computing. An industrial engineer internship may be required to earn your bachelor’s degree and acquire necessary on-the-job skills before entering the workforce.

Some positions may require engineering or other skill certifications. Earning certifications can help prove your competency to work as an engineer. Many employers who offer consulting services require their workers to have a Professional Engineer (PE) certification.

To obtain PE certification, you need a bachelor’s degree, four years of experience and to pass two exams. Continuing education is required to renew the license.

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