How can a process run more efficiently? How can a group of workers improve productivity? These are questions that an industrial engineering technician asks in order to help employees, systems, and machines operate more effectively. These technicians are skilled observers and critical thinkers. They evaluate the performance of other people or organizations and identify potential improvements or changes. They may study the time and steps workers take to do a task, and use that information to establish production or service goals. Industrial engineering technicians also observe how equipment is used and maintained, looking for ways to reduce expenses or improve quality. They apply their skills across all the stages of industrial processes to help businesses minimize inventory costs, increase customer satisfaction, and control project expenses. Most industrial engineering technicians work in factories, stores, healthcare organizations, repair shops, and offices. They typically work on site at locations where products are made and services are delivered. Most work full-time schedules, on teams supervised by industrial engineers. Industrial engineering technicians typically need an associate’s degree or certificate in the field. Community colleges or technical institutes typically offer associate’s degree programs, and vocational–technical schools offer certificate programs. Knowledge of computer-aided design software —or computer skills that will help you learn it— is very useful.
What they do:
Apply engineering theory and principles to problems of industrial layout or manufacturing production, usually under the direction of engineering staff. May perform time and motion studies on worker operations in a variety of industries for purposes such as establishing standard production rates or improving efficiency.
On the job, you would:
Test selected products at specified stages in the production process for performance characteristics or adherence to specifications.
Compile and evaluate statistical data to determine and maintain quality and reliability of products.
Study time, motion, methods, or speed involved in maintenance, production, or other operations to establish standard production rate or improve efficiency.
Engineering and Technology
product and service development
Manufactured or Agricultural Goods
manufacture and distribution of products
Math and Science
arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics
Arts and Humanities
reading work related information
listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions
noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it
People and Technology Systems
figuring out how a system should work and how changes in the future will affect it
measuring how well a system is working and how to improve it
listen and understand what people say
read and understand what is written
Ideas and Logic
make general rules or come up with answers from lots of detailed information
notice when problems happen
add, subtract, multiply, or divide
choose the right type of math to solve a problem
pay attention to something without being distracted
People interested in this work like activities that include ideas, thinking, and figuring things out.
They do well at jobs that need:
Attention to Detail
You might use software like this on the job:
Industrial control software
Siemens SINUMERIK CNC
Supervisory control and data acquisition SCADA software
Analytical or scientific software
IBM SPSS Statistics
The MathWorks MATLAB
Computer aided design CAD software
Dassault Systemes CATIA
some college or associate's degree usually needed
Get started on your career:
New job opportunities are less likely in the future.