Job Description

About 8 months ago I started a new position at the company I worked for as a mechanical design engineer. For me personally, the job description did not have much of an influence on my decision to apply. I had worked with this engineering group I was applying to be part of before. So, I had a decent idea of what the job entailed. I was also friends with one of the engineers on the team. So, I had a unique opportunity to ask him questions directly about the job and he felt comfortable being honest with me. His input and information on the job is what influenced me the most to apply.

I was a little concerned about my direct job experience when I applied. The previous 10 years of my career had been as a manufacturing engineer in one form or another. I had never worked as a mechanical design engineer designing final product. So, direct experience wasn’t a very close match. However, the group really liked the other skills I brought to the table. The group I am in works closely with manufacturing to launch custom product on a short time frame. They liked that I had 10 years of experience directly supporting manufacturing and I had helped their team launch a product before when they needed help. So, they thought I could be taught the product design part and could bring the manufacturing portion of the job to the team.

This new role also involved generating the quotes on custom product and equipment. I had never quoted custom product or equipment before. However, as a manufacturing engineer I have estimated the cost to manufacture and product standard product and equipment. The team that interviewed me like this experience and thought it would be a good match.

Unfortunately, I no longer have the exact job description I applied for. However, I did find a job description for another engineering position. It is a pretty close match.

A-dec Design Engineer:

Overview: A-dec is looking for a Design Engineer to join our Dental Furniture engineering team. In this role, you will work as part of a team performing standard engineering work requiring application of standard engineering techniques, procedures, and criteria.

Responsibilities: The incumbent reports to an Engineering Supervisor. Receives input from other members of the design team. Performs a variety of tasks, which provide experience and familiarization with the design staff, methods, and practices of the company. Expected to make suggestions for improvement and develop improvement ideas based on technical knowledge gained through assignments. Work requires limited exercise of judgement on details of work and in making preliminary selection and adoption of design alternatives. Work is closely supervised. Tasks and or challenges are outlined with suggestions as to methods of approach, procedures to be followed, and results expected. Develops solutions to problems of limited scope where the relationships are identified easily, and precedence exists. Applies basic principles, theories, and concepts. A challenge of this position is to learn the company systems and culture to develop a good foundation for growth and successful contributions.

Major functions of the position include: • Creativity: Applies knowledge of engineering principles to accomplish a wide variety of technical assignments while developing skills and experience to begin to provide original ideas and develop new solutions to design problems. Design solutions are limited by conformance to A-dec standards for aesthetics and quality, which facilitate production and service in the simplest manner possible yet perform at or above the specified standards. • Model Making: The incumbent makes layout sketches and works from these to either make parts or have them fabricated in the Model Shop so a working model can be fabricated to validate the design. • Testing: The incumbent may perform testing of new or competitor products to determine performance within the project parameters. This will generally involve in-house reliability testing as well as field-testing. Collected data is analyzed, summarized, and added to the project folder, along with other supporting data. • Trouble Shooting: The incumbent researches product or component failures to determine suitable solutions to production or field failures. • Design Review: The incumbent establishes and coordinates a design review with Product Development and Manufacturing. This is to assure that the final prototype meets product parameters and manufacturability requirements. • Quality: The incumbent assures accuracy of Engineering documents and that designs meet form, fit and function in accordance with A-dec’s quality criteria. • Manufacturability/Cost of Parts: The incumbent is responsible for the manufacturability and cost of all parts. This will include using standard materials, use of liberal tolerances, keeping the design simple, ensuring compatibility with intended manufacturing process and frequent contact with Manufacturing during the design phase of a project. • Engineering Release: The incumbent is responsible for the release of assigned projects. This can include Engineering Control Authorizations (ECA’s), Product Development Releases (PDR’s), and Product Change Authorizations (PCA’s). • Documentation: Ensures appropriate documentation is complete and correct. Records ideas in the form of conceptual drawings, layouts, sketches, and dimensional drawings. Uses computerized modeling tools for visualization and model making. Works from layouts or sketches and has parts fabricated or may make parts as required. Document’s development work including specifications for manufacturing and scientific test results. • Keeping current with technology: Maintains membership in engineering professional organizations to remain current and to establish professional contacts outside the company.

Qualifications: • Demonstrates ability to communicate effectively in oral and written form. • Demonstrates good organizational skills and the ability to manage own time and resources effectively. • Demonstrates ability to work independently as well as in a team environment. • Demonstrated skills suitable for application and interpretation of basic engineering principles, theories, and concepts. • Technical competence and theoretical knowledge equivalent to a standard curriculum of an accredited BS degree in Engineering or appropriate practical experience in a specific area of technical specialty is preferred.

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2 responses to “Job Description”

  1. Hi Steven,

    Its interesting to hear that the job description did not have much of an influence on your willingness to apply or not! I have found through my experience that the job description had a large influence of whether I applied or not, as it is usually what describes what the job entails, qualifications, etc. It does help that you knew someone already in that group in which you were applying for, you probably got a lot of information from them so you knew what to expect. Great post.


  2. Hi Steven,
    I completely understand your point about the job description not influencing your decision. I am in a very similar boat. For me, I am more concerned with the people I will be working with rather than the job description. In athletics it is all about relationships, so I want to make sure that I have that with my coworkers or at least have some sort of understanding.
    Seth Yates

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