Skills hiring companies look for in industrial engineers

You've completed your bachelor’s or master’s degree in ISE, and you have internship or co-op experience under your belt. You've proven yourself to be a dependable worker, but are you ready to secure your first job? When hiring industrial and systems engineers, many companies are looking for both skills taught in the classroom and general skills beyond that set. Focus on fostering the following skills to gain a competitive advantage in your job search.

Ability to apply ISE fundamentals:
  • Production control
  • Inventory control
  • Process analysis
  • Facility planning
  • Material handling
  • Statistical analysis
Strong grounding in engineering fundamentals:
  • Basic design
  • Strength of materials
  • Thermodynamics
  • Electrical theory
  • Applied physics
  • Machining
Communication and inter-personal skills:
  • Success in working with cross-functional team skills
  • Ability to work well with others
  • Ability to communicate ideas through technical writing. You should be able to write documentation and reports that are clear, logical, and grammatically correct.
  • Ability to present ideas to diverse audiences. This requires good communication skills, including the ability to prepare and give presentations, to actively listen, to discuss a range of topics with a variety of people.
  • Ability to establish a rapport with a variety of people, from shop personnel to senior management
Project management skills:
  • Ability to develop objectives, scope, work plan, and schedule
  • Lean/Six Sigma analysis skills
Analytical skills:
  • Proficiency in doing investigations and root cause analysis
  • Internet research skills
  • Methods improvement skills
  • Standard data development and conducting time studies
  • Cost analysis, return on investment, and cost estimating skills for analyzing alternative solutions
Computing skills:
  • MS Office: Word, Excel, Access, PowerPoint, and MS Project
  • Statistical software
  • Electronic layout/drafting skills, like AutoCAD
  • Simulation software and electronic comparison analysis