Process Engineer

Create efficient manufacturing systems.

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$95,000 – $147,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor


What do Process Engineers do?

Long before a new product hits retail shelves, it starts as nothing more than a pile of raw materials. With a great idea, a lot of planning, and an investment, that heap of nothing is turned into a widget. The transformation from nothing to something is a process, and every product goes through it.

As a Process Engineer, you might be employed by a large manufacturing or production facility, or you might be hired as a Consultant. Either way, the expertise of a Process Engineer lies in analyzing a process and identifying potential changes. Sometimes, the process starts before the production line is built. But often, Process Engineers are called in as an advisor when it’s time for the company to make changes.

To fully evaluate the process, you interview the Project Manager, talk with employees, and observe the process in action. Sometimes, minor tweaks, such as rearranging a few pieces of equipment or consolidating two jobs on a production line, will result in marked improvement to flow and efficiency. Other times, the process will require a major overhaul. If you can’t identify existing equipment or systems to streamline the process, then you get out your computer and design a new one (you’re an Engineer, after all).

With a plan in mind, you write up reports and create visual aids that help you relay your recommendations. Once the decision-makers approve your plan, you stick around until all phases have been upgraded and tested before moving on to the next project.


Should I be a Process Engineer?

You should have a bachelor's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.
  • Leader: You're good at taking charge, giving directions, and inspiring other people.
  • Reliable: You can always be counted on to do a good job.

  • Also known as: Plant Engineer, Senior Engineer, Supervisory Civil Engineer

    How to become a Process Engineer

    Most Process Engineers have a Bachelor's degree. Chart?chd=s:aaa9rg&chl=|||bachelor%27s+%2872%25%29|master%27s+%2820%25%29|doctorate+%288%25%29&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,0,72
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