The different production engineer jobs available involve a wide range of commercial interests. One example is in the oil and gas industry, where production engineers oversee the completion of bringing wells into operation and the specifications for surface equipment that separates these natural resources into salable products. Other types of production engineer jobs include work in the heavy steel industry, the mining industry, glass and aluminum factory production and a myriad of scalable manufacturing processes.
Production engineer jobs in large part span most of the manufacturing sector, with openings concentrated in industries that are in the process of designing new methods of production. This includes not only the production process itself, such as assembly line manufacturing, but also the computer control systems that run it and the inspection process that occurs along the way to a final product. A key component of production engineer jobs is working alongside those in other engineering disciplines, such as software engineering, industrial engineering and management engineering, to make the production process as efficient and reliable as possible .
They work closely with other engineering experts in the design of new components or systems, so production engineers often find themselves working on a consulting basis across a spectrum of related employers. Production engineer jobs are generally filled by those who possess a wide knowledge of engineering practices in general and the management issues related to production processes. The increasing complexity of manufacturing and system controls results in production engineers working hand-in-hand with design engineers, service engineers, mechanical engineers and more. Examples of fields where production engineers play critical roles include the design of nuclear power stations, aerospace manufacturing and telecommunications.
As manufacturing continues to grow more complex, those in management science must work to ensure that the best practices are employed in the design of the system for efficient use of resources, time and labor. A production engineer’s role is essentially a combination of these two disciplines — manufacturing and management science. This integration is most notable in production industries where computer systems control the manufacturing process, with human oversight instead of primarily hands on physical labor. Production engineer jobs therefore are often found in fields where new or redesigned systems are being built that maximize the use of robotics. Different production engineer jobs, however, can involve everything from individual tool design at one end of a production process to complete system automation at the other.