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Become A Product Applications Engineer

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Working As A Product Applications Engineer

  • Communicating with Persons Outside Organization
  • Selling or Influencing Others
  • Interacting With Computers
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Mostly Sitting

  • $89,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Product Applications Engineer Do

Sales engineers sell complex scientific and technological products or services to businesses. They must have extensive knowledge of the products’ parts and functions and must understand the scientific processes that make these products work.

Duties

Sales engineers typically do the following:

  • Prepare and deliver technical presentations explaining products or services to existing and prospective customers
  • Confer with customers and engineers to assess equipment needs and to determine system requirements
  • Collaborate with sales teams to understand customer requirements and provide sales support
  • Secure and renew orders and arrange delivery
  • Plan and modify products to meet customer needs
  • Help clients solve problems with installed equipment
  • Recommend improved materials or machinery to customers, showing how changes will lower costs or increase production
  • Help in researching and developing new products

Sales engineers specialize in technologically and scientifically advanced products. They use their technical skills to explain the benefits of their products or services to potential customers and to show how their products or services are better than their competitors'. Some sales engineers work for the companies that design and build technical products. Others work for independent sales firms.

Many of the duties of sales engineers are similar to those of other salespersons. They must interest the client in buying their products or services, negotiate a price, and complete the sale. To do this, sales engineers give technical presentations during which they explain the technical aspects of the product and how it will solve a specific customer problem.

Some sales engineers, however, team with salespersons who concentrate on marketing and selling the product, which lets the sales engineer concentrate on the technical aspects of the job. By working as part of a sales team, each member is able to focus on his or her strengths and expertise. For more information on other sales occupations, see the profile on wholesale and manufacturing sales representatives.

In addition to giving technical presentations, sales engineers are increasingly doing other tasks related to sales, such as market research. They also may ask for technical requirements from customers and modify and adjust products to meet customers’ specific needs. Some sales engineers work with research and development (R&D) departments to help identify and develop new products.

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How To Become A Product Applications Engineer

A bachelor’s degree is typically required to become a sales engineer. Successful sales engineers combine technical knowledge of the products or services they are selling with strong interpersonal skills.

Education

Sales engineers typically need a bachelor’s degree in engineering or a related field. However, a worker without a degree, but with previous sales experience as well as technical experience or training, sometimes holds the title of sales engineer. Workers who have a degree in a science, such as chemistry, or in business with little or no previous sales experience, also may be called sales engineers.

University engineering programs generally require 4 years of study. They vary in content, but all programs include courses in math and the physical sciences. In addition, most programs require developing strong computer skills.

Most engineering programs require students to choose an area of specialization. The most common majors are electrical, mechanical, or civil engineering, but some engineering departments offer additional majors, such as chemical, biomedical, or computer hardware engineering. However, some undergraduate programs offer a general engineering curriculum; students then specialize in a particular area either on the job or in graduate school.

Training

New graduates with engineering degrees typically need sales experience and training before they can work independently as sales engineers. Training covers general sales techniques and may involve teaming with a sales mentor who is familiar with the employer's business practices, customers, procedures, and company culture. After the training period, sales engineers may continue to partner with someone who lacks technical skills yet excels in the art of sales.

It is important for sales engineers to continue their engineering and sales education throughout their careers. Much of their value to their employers depends on their knowledge of, and ability to sell, the latest technologies. Sales engineers in high-technology fields, such as information technology and advanced electronics, may find that their technical knowledge rapidly becomes obsolete, requiring frequent retraining.

Advancement

Promotions may include a higher commission rate, a larger sales territory, or elevation to the position of supervisor or sales manager.

Important Qualities

Interpersonal skills. Strong interpersonal skills are a valuable characteristic for sales engineers, both for building relationships with clients and effectively communicating with other members of the sales team.

Problem-solving skills. Sales engineers must be able to listen to the customer’s desires and concerns, and then recommend solutions, possibly including customizing a product.

Self-confidence. Sales engineers should be confident and persuasive when making sales presentations. 

Technological skills. Sales engineers must have extensive knowledge of the technologically sophisticated products they sell in order to explain their advantages and answer questions.

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Product Applications Engineer Jobs

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Product Applications Engineer Career Paths

Product Applications Engineer
Product Manager Marketing Manager Business Development Manager
Senior Business Development Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Product Manager Product Marketing Manager
Senior Product Marketing Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Product Manager Sales Manager Account Manager
Global Account Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Engineering Director
Vice President Of Engineering
13 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Marketing Manager Product Marketing Manager
Director, Product Marketing
11 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Marketing Manager Sales And Marketing Manager
Regional Sales And Marketing Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Sales Engineer Consultant Senior Engineer
Senior Engineering Manager
12 Yearsyrs
Sales Engineer Engineering Manager
Engineering Operations Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Sales Engineer Sales And Marketing Manager Product Marketing Manager
Product Line Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Senior Applications Engineer Senior Engineer Information Technology Project Manager
Engineering Program Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Senior Applications Engineer Senior Engineer Engineering Supervisor
Manufacturing Engineering Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Senior Applications Engineer Project Leader Technical Project Manager
Technical Product Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Regional Sales Manager National Sales Manager
International Sales Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Program Manager Operations Program Manager Manufacturing Manager
Product Engineering Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Senior Product Engineer Senior Manufacturing Engineer Senior Design Engineer
Design Engineering Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Senior Product Engineer Senior Systems Engineer Senior Sales Engineer
Technical Sales Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Senior Product Engineer Engineering Manager Product Development Manager
Global Product Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Field Applications Engineer Senior Design Engineer
Senior Engineering Team Leader
8 Yearsyrs
Field Applications Engineer Contracting Engineer Application Engineer
Applications Engineering Manager
9 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Product Applications Engineer?

Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
Product Engineer 3.5 years
Marketing Engineer 2.9 years
Top Careers Before Product Applications Engineer
Engineer 6.0%
Internship 4.7%
Top Careers After Product Applications Engineer
Consultant 3.7%
Engineer 3.1%

Do you work as a Product Applications Engineer?

Average Yearly Salary
$89,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$63,000
Min 10%
$89,000
Median 50%
$89,000
Median 50%
$89,000
Median 50%
$89,000
Median 50%
$89,000
Median 50%
$89,000
Median 50%
$89,000
Median 50%
$127,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
ON Semiconductor
Highest Paying City
San Jose, CA
Highest Paying State
California
Avg Experience Level
3.9 years
How much does a Product Applications Engineer make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Product Applications Engineer in the United States is $90,002 per year or $43 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $63,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $127,000.

Real Product Applications Engineer Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Senior Staff Product Applications Engineer Xilinx, Inc. San Jose, CA Dec 19, 2016 $173,000
Principal Product Applications Engineer Integrated Device Technology, Inc. San Jose, CA Oct 10, 2016 $170,704
Product Applications Engineer Xilinx, Inc. San Jose, CA Sep 28, 2015 $145,392
Senior Product Application Engineer Quinstreet, Inc. Foster City, CA Jul 14, 2015 $145,000
Staff Serdes Product Applications Engineer Xilinx, Inc. San Jose, CA Nov 23, 2016 $137,900
Staff Product Applications Engineer Xilinx, Inc. San Jose, CA May 09, 2016 $136,500
Product Applications Engineer Infineon Technologies North America Corp Milpitas, CA May 14, 2015 $135,464
Product Applications Engineer Xilinx, Inc. San Jose, CA Sep 22, 2015 $134,200
Product Application Engineer McKesson Corporation Newton, MA Jul 04, 2016 $125,000
Systems Product Application Engineer Knowles Electronics, LLC Mountain View, CA Apr 04, 2016 $125,000
Product Applications Engineer Y4 NXP Semiconductors USA, Inc. San Jose, CA May 08, 2016 $123,000 -
$153,800
Senior Product Applications Engineer Xilinx, Inc. San Jose, CA Aug 23, 2016 $120,000
Senior Product Applications Engineer Xilinx, Inc. San Jose, CA Jul 27, 2015 $120,000
Senior Product Applications Engineer Sandisk Corporation Milpitas, CA Feb 10, 2015 $119,398
Product Applications Engineer Analog Devices, Inc. San Jose, CA Apr 07, 2016 $99,756 -
$110,600
Engineer, Staff II-Product Applications Broadcom Corporation San Jose, CA Jul 19, 2016 $99,674
Engineer, Staff II-Product Applications Broadcom Corporation Santa Clara, CA Feb 03, 2016 $99,674
Senior Product Applications Engineer Xilinx, Inc. Longmont, CO Jun 06, 2016 $99,000
Product Application Engineer (Korean Accounts) Plastic Omnium Auto Inergy (USA), LLC Troy, MI Jul 25, 2016 $97,500
Product Application Engineer Plastic Omnium Auto Inergy (USA) LLC Troy, MI Aug 30, 2016 $97,500
New Products Application Engineer Corning Incorporated Corning, NY Sep 28, 2016 $92,186
Engineer, Staff I-Product Applications Broadcom Corporation San Jose, CA Oct 08, 2016 $92,000
Product Application Engineer-Group Leader Cummins Emission Solutions Inc. Columbus, IN Sep 13, 2015 $82,100 -
$99,800
Product Application Engineer-Group Leader Cummins Inc. Columbus, IN Oct 12, 2015 $82,100 -
$99,800
Product Application Engineer-Group Leader Cummins Inc. Columbus, IN Dec 10, 2015 $82,100 -
$99,800
Product Application Engineer-Group Leader Cummins Emission Solutions Inc. Columbus, IN Feb 13, 2016 $82,100 -
$99,800
Product Applications Engineer Wurth Electronics Midcom Inc. Plano, TX Feb 10, 2015 $81,016
Product Applications Engineer Xilinx, Inc. Longmont, CO Apr 09, 2016 $81,000
Product Application Engineer Plastic Omnium Auto Inergy (USA) LLC Troy, MI Feb 01, 2016 $81,000
Product Application Engineer Derrick Corporation Buffalo, NY Sep 30, 2015 $78,988

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Top Skills for A Product Applications Engineer

  1. New Product Development
  2. Technical Support
  3. OEM
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Managed projects for production improvements and new product developments.
  • Provided on-site technical support and system configuration for remote monitoring products and services.
  • Recollected and created early engineering product documentation for customers participating in the OEM early hardware evaluation programs.
  • Provided product applications engineering and customer support throughout the United States and Canada.
  • Created and maintained technical support documentation in AutoCAD for optical transmission equipment.

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Average Salary:

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Top 10 Best States for Product Applications Engineers

  1. California
  2. Texas
  3. Washington
  4. Arizona
  5. Massachusetts
  6. Rhode Island
  7. New Hampshire
  8. Wyoming
  9. Idaho
  10. Delaware
  • (6,446 jobs)
  • (2,866 jobs)
  • (1,081 jobs)
  • (632 jobs)
  • (1,426 jobs)
  • (92 jobs)
  • (291 jobs)
  • (39 jobs)
  • (128 jobs)
  • (97 jobs)

Product Applications Engineer Demographics

Gender

Male

80.4%

Female

10.9%

Unknown

8.8%
Ethnicity

White

58.5%

Asian

15.0%

Hispanic or Latino

12.7%

Black or African American

9.4%

Unknown

4.4%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

23.5%

Mandarin

17.6%

Chinese

11.8%

Cantonese

8.8%

Japanese

5.9%

Carrier

5.9%

Portuguese

2.9%

Bulgarian

2.9%

Macedonian

2.9%

German

2.9%

Malay

2.9%

French

2.9%

Russian

2.9%

Hebrew

2.9%

Arabic

2.9%
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Product Applications Engineer Education

Schools

Michigan Technological University

7.6%

San Jose State University

7.6%

University of Phoenix

6.8%

Purdue University

6.8%

Pennsylvania State University

5.9%

Rochester Institute of Technology

5.9%

Georgia Institute of Technology -

5.1%

Colorado School of Mines

5.1%

University of Pittsburgh -

5.1%

Texas A&M University

5.1%

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

5.1%

Arizona State University

4.2%

University of Toledo

4.2%

University of Southern California

4.2%

University of Maryland - College Park

4.2%

University of Wisconsin - Madison

3.4%

Texas Tech University

3.4%

Santa Clara University

3.4%

University of Akron

3.4%

University of California - Berkeley

3.4%
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Majors

Electrical Engineering

26.6%

Mechanical Engineering

21.1%

Business

12.2%

Engineering

4.6%

Mechanical Engineering Technology

4.1%

Computer Science

3.8%

Chemical Engineering

3.4%

Computer Engineering

2.9%

Management

2.6%

Project Management

2.6%

Electrical Engineering Technology

2.4%

Finance

2.4%

Marketing

2.2%

Industrial Technology

1.7%

Engineering Technology

1.4%

Environmental Control Technologies/Technicians

1.4%

Computer Information Systems

1.4%

Drafting And Design

1.2%

Systems Engineering

1.0%

Operations Management

1.0%
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Degrees

Bachelors

46.6%

Masters

34.2%

Other

8.6%

Associate

5.2%

Certificate

2.7%

Doctorate

1.5%

Diploma

1.3%
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