An engineering wearing a hard hat holds blueprints while gesturing. Two other workers stand on either side.
Given that the national average salary for an engineering manager is $128,825, it’s safe to say a graduate program is likely worth the investment.

Engineering management offers a unique perspective on the intersection of technology, leadership, and strategy. In this blog post, you’ll learn about the many types of jobs in engineering management and the career impact of a master’s degree. Dive in to get a full understanding of what engineering management entails.

What is Engineering Management?

Engineering management is an interdisciplinary field that merges principles from engineering, business, and management. Its focus is to lead and oversee engineering projects and teams.

From the engineering perspective, it emphasizes a deep understanding of design principles and systems engineering. This domain highly values problem-solving skills and using engineering methodologies to address complex challenges. It also emphasizes fostering innovation to create new solutions.

On the business front, financial management is crucial. It’s about budgeting, forecasting, and ensuring projects are profitable. Strategic planning plays a role in setting long-term goals and allocating resources to achieve them. Additionally, understanding market demands and customer needs through marketing and sales insights is vital.

From a management standpoint, efficient leadership and project management are at the core. Leaders in engineering management guide and motivate teams toward project goals that lead to profitability. 

An understanding of human resources management helps engineering management personnel to emphasize team dynamics and conflict resolution. It also ensures the right people are placed in the appropriate roles.

Together, these principles empower engineering managers to lead technical projects and teams that align with business objectives efficiently.

Subfields of Engineering Management

  • Project Management: Planning, executing, and closing engineering projects on time, within scope, and on budget.
  • Systems Engineering: Designing and managing complex systems over their life cycles, ensuring that all components work harmoniously.
  • Product Management: Overseeing the development, production, and marketing of engineering products to ensure they meet market demands and industry standards.
  • Quality Assurance: Developing and employing processes to ensure engineering projects and products meet specified requirements.

What is a Master’s in Engineering Management Good for?

A master’s in engineering management offers a mix of technical and managerial skills. Here’s why it stands out:

Enhances Core Skills

The master’s in engineering management is designed to refine a professional’s core competencies. It delves deep into analytical techniques, fosters leadership qualities, and sharpens decision-making abilities. With these enhanced skills, graduates are primed to take on leadership roles, ensuring engineering projects and teams achieve their goals on budget and on time.

Has a Broad Scope

Unlike narrowly focused engineering degrees, this master’s offers a panoramic view of the engineering landscape. It’s tailored to cater to a wide range of projects and multidisciplinary teams.

This inclusivity makes it an attractive choice for individuals from varied backgrounds, be it business, finance, or humanities. By merging their foundational knowledge with engineering principles and the technical side of the discipline, they can take on greater leadership responsibilities and navigate the engineering sector with confidence and versatility.

Aids Career Transitions

For those outside the engineering realm, this degree serves as a powerful catalyst to enter a technical field backed by business acumen and engineering-enhanced skills. Armed with the essential knowledge and skills from a master’s program that offers a comprehensive mix of leadership and technologically centric courses, individuals can seamlessly transition and thrive in engineering roles, even if their initial training was in a different non-technical field.

Potential Salary Increases 

There’s not a universal master’s in engineering management salary, but the value of higher education can positively impact your salary expectations. Data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reveals that the more advanced the level of education, the higher the median weekly earnings. Given that the national average salary for an engineering manager is $128,825, it’s safe to say a graduate program is likely worth the investment.

9 Jobs in Engineering Management

1. Engineering Project Manager

A project manager is responsible for planning, executing, and finalizing engineering projects within a stipulated time and budget. They coordinate with various teams, ensure resource allocation, and handle any challenges that arise during the project lifecycle.

2. Systems Engineer

Systems engineers focus on the design, integration, and management of complex systems over their life cycles. They ensure that each component of a system functions seamlessly with the others. An example of one of these systems is a Smart City infrastructure. The system engineer would be responsible for tasks like integrating sensors, data analysis, and communication networks to enhance urban living and operations.

3. Product Manager

Product managers oversee the entire lifecycle of a product, from its conception to its market release. They collaborate with engineering teams, understand market demands, and ensure the product aligns with company goals.

4. Quality Assurance Manager

Quality assurance managers ensure that engineering processes and end products adhere to established quality standards. They implement testing methodologies, identify areas of improvement, and ensure that products meet customer expectations. They’re also likely certified in applicable  project management tools.

Jobs Indirectly Related to Engineering Management

5. Aerospace/Aeronautical Engineer

Engineering management leaders can also work as aerospace and aeronautical engineers, playing a pivotal role in overseeing the design and development of aircraft and spacecraft. Their expertise in cutting-edge technologies, combined with leadership and project management training, ensures projects meet safety standards and efficiency goals. They collaborate with diverse teams to drive innovations in systems and enhance flight performance.

6. Biomedical Engineer

Within the scope of engineering management, biomedical engineers act as the crucial link between medical science and engineering solutions. They lead teams to design and innovate healthcare equipment and software. Biomedical engineers’ contributions include creating artificial organs and pioneering diagnostic tools to support the health and well-being of society. These innovations ensure healthcare projects adhere to quality and efficiency standards.

8. Environmental Engineer

Under the engineering management umbrella, environmental engineers are responsible for overseeing infrastructure projects with an environmental lens. They lead initiatives to combat pollution, manage waste, and ensure sustainability. They help engineering projects meet both structural requirements and environmental compliance.

9. Industrial Engineer

Within engineering management, industrial engineers focus on optimizing production processes. From manpower to machinery, they lead projects to reduce waste and integrate resources seamlessly. An industrial engineer’s analytical approach to redesigning workflows results in significant time and cost savings for industries.

Advance Your Engineering Management Career Path

Johns Hopkins Whiting School of Engineering is home to the #1 online master’s program in engineering management by U.S. News & World Report. Our students enjoy a flexible schedule taught by our renowned faculty and robust networking opportunities. 

Ready to take the next step in your engineering management career? Join us for an informative information session, or start your application today.