Regardless of the skills shortages we are
currently facing in South Africa, engineering is a booming industry in our
country. Practically every company that designs and manufactures a product
employs a mechanical engineer. But mechanical engineers can also be found in research
labs, government, and in other line of works such as medicine, law or teaching.
Mechanical Engineers work in many different
settings, most often as a matter of choice and career planning. They differ in
the type of workplace, the problems to be solved, and work schedule. Some
mechanical engineers work in design centers and headquarters facilities of
high-tech companies; some prefer working in the field, and some travel overseas
to serve clients and to develop new markets for products and services. There's
a good chance that you won't spend all your waking hours sitting at a
Engineers don’t really have a typical day in the workplace. The issues and
challenges are numerous and evolve throughout the project. It is difficult to
characterize a typical day under these circumstances. It takes more than
technical knowledge to be a good mechanical engineer; you need attributes like
thinking out of the box, dealing with difficult situations and the list goes
on, to compliment your practical ability.
Problem solving mentality
Mechanical engineers thrive on solving difficult problems. These are not only
technical problems, mechanical engineers deal with management requirements,
unique customer needs, budget and legal constraints, environmental and social
issues, as well as changes in technology. It is the mechanical engineers
training in mathematics, the sciences, engineering fundamentals, and computer
applications that provide them the ability to anticipate and respond to change.
For the working engineer, the key is staying up to date with emerging
Most mechanical engineering jobs require
design experience. When a need comes about for a new or better product,
companies call upon mechanical engineers to do the job. Engineers have to push
beyond the limits of their previous work knowledge and use modern technology to
meet project requirements successfully.
Mechanical engineers can also create the controlled indoor environment that
people need in order to work in comfort. Factors such as humidity, temperature
and cleanliness of the air in the workplace are monitored, adjusted and
controlled by these engineers.
Mechanical engineers are also involved in
the social responsibility of engineers and engineering organizations, which
includes effective development
issues such as:
- water supply and sanitation,
- cleaner production and recycling,
- energy efficiency and conservation, renewable energy and clean
- emergencies and disaster preparedness and response including
- post disaster and conflict restoration, rehabilitation and
- engaging engineers in decision-making, policy-making and
Engineering continues to grow in terms of the gender, ethnicity, and national
origins of students and graduates entering the engineering workforce. The
workplace constantly changing and one need to have the skill to adapt
to different work environments and be able to work with different people
from different backgrounds, ages and gender.
Professionalism is supposed to be a given attribute, but fraud and corruption
is affecting the ethos of the engineering industry and ultimately on our
country. Being trustworthy and not taking bribes are a rare skill to have
nowadays. One indication of a true profession is the existence of a code of
ethics and a clear sense of professional responsibility and loyalty.
For that reason the South
African Institution of Mechanical Engineering exists to serve the interests
and needs of its members, to advance the science and practise of mechanical
engineering, and to promote high standards in the profession.
Are you currently in the mechanical
engineering field and looking for engineering jobs?
Do you enjoy solving complex problems as
well as spending the day dreaming up solutions? Then let us help you showcase
your skills and talent!
We are a specialist recruitment company in
the engineering field with available job opportunities in mechanical
engineering, design engineering, civil engineering, structural engineering and
so much more. Visit our vacancy page and apply now!
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