Mechanical designers research, design, develop and test mechanical tools and equipment. Projects can vary significantly, from researching and developing medical products to improving production processes in large oil refineries or designing services within buildings.
Who can I work for?
You can work for parts and product manufacturers across a broad range of industries from automotive through to construction.
Where and when can I work?
Most roles are office based and you will typically work standard office hours of 9am to 5.30pm, Monday to Friday. There are generally positions available in all areas of the country.
What can I earn?
Depending on your location and the sector you choose to work in, salaries start between £20,000 to £28,000, and rise to between £35,000 to £50,000 at mid-level. Experienced mechanical designers can earn in excess of £55,000.
What are the benefits?
Self-employment and freelance work are possible for qualified mechanical designers with a good track record and experience. Short-term contract work is also possible, often arranged through agencies and there is the potential for travel around the country and abroad.
Are there chances of promotion?
There is the potential to move into a management position, leading a team of designers. With many years experience you can consider becoming an engineering and design consultant.
What will I be responsible for?
You will normally work on a project from the initial brief, through the design and development stage, to the testing of one or more prototypes, right through to final manufacture and implementation. You will be required to work alongside other design, development and production professionals and teams.
Do I need any experience?
Mechanical designers have usually studied mechanical engineering, product design or engineering technology, or other related engineering courses. Experience gained at a work placement is also very valuable to a potential employer. You will also need knowledge of CAM, CAD and 3D CAD.
What attributes are needed?
You will need to demonstrate that you are thorough and focused and can communicate effectively both verbally and in writing. You should be able to work well as part of a team and take responsibility for your own tasks.