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Become A Senior Electrical Designer

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Working As A Senior Electrical Designer

  • Interacting With Computers
  • Getting Information
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Analyzing Data or Information
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Mostly Sitting

  • $109,834

    Average Salary

What Does A Senior Electrical Designer Do

Electrical engineers design, develop, test, and supervise the manufacturing of electrical equipment, such as electric motors, radar and navigation systems, communications systems, or power generation equipment. Electrical engineers also design the electrical systems of automobiles and aircraft.

Electronics engineers design and develop electronic equipment, such as broadcast and communications systems, from portable music players to global positioning systems (GPSs). Many also work in areas closely related to computer hardware.

Duties

Electrical engineers typically do the following:

  • Design new ways to use electrical power to develop or improve products
  • Perform detailed calculations to develop manufacturing, construction, and installation standards and specifications
  • Direct the manufacture, installation, and testing of electrical equipment to ensure that products meet specifications and codes
  • Investigate complaints from customers or the public, evaluate problems, and recommend solutions
  • Work with project managers on production efforts to ensure that projects are completed satisfactorily, on time, and within budget

Electronics engineers typically do the following:

  • Design electronic components, software, products, or systems for commercial, industrial, medical, military, or scientific applications
  • Analyze customer needs and determine the requirements, capacity, and cost for developing an electrical system plan
  • Develop maintenance and testing procedures for electronic components and equipment
  • Evaluate systems and recommend design modifications or equipment repair
  • Inspect electronic equipment, instruments, and systems to make sure that they meet safety standards and applicable regulations
  • Plan and develop applications and modifications for electronic properties used in parts and systems in order to improve technical performance

Electronics engineers who work for the federal government research, develop, and evaluate electronic devices used in a variety of areas, such as aviation, computing, transportation, and manufacturing. They work on federal electronic devices and systems, including satellites, flight systems, radar and sonar systems, and communications systems.

The work of electrical engineers and electronics engineers is often similar. Both use engineering and design software and equipment to do engineering tasks. Both types of engineers also must work with other engineers to discuss existing products and possibilities for engineering projects.

Engineers whose work is related exclusively to computer hardware are considered computer hardware engineers.

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How To Become A Senior Electrical Designer

Electrical and electronics engineers must have a bachelor’s degree. Employers also value practical experience, so participation in cooperative engineering programs, in which students earn academic credit for structured work experience. Having a Professional Engineer (PE) license may improve an engineer’s chances of finding employment.

Education

High school students interested in studying electrical or electronics engineering benefit from taking courses in physics and mathematics, including algebra, trigonometry, and calculus. Courses in drafting are also helpful, because electrical and electronics engineers often are required to prepare technical drawings.

In order to enter the occupation, prospective electrical and electronics engineers need a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering, electronics engineering, or electrical engineering technology. Programs include classroom, laboratory, and field studies. Courses include digital systems design, differential equations, and electrical circuit theory. Programs in electrical engineering, electronics engineering, or electrical engineering technology should be accredited by ABET.

Some colleges and universities offer cooperative programs in which students gain practical experience while completing their education. Cooperative programs combine classroom study with practical work. Internships provide similar experience and are growing in number.

At some universities, students can enroll in a 5-year program that leads to both a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree. A graduate degree allows an engineer to work as an instructor at some universities, or in research and development.

Important Qualities

Concentration. Electrical and electronics engineers design and develop complex electrical systems and electronic components and products. They must be able to keep track of multiple design elements and technical characteristics when performing these tasks.

Initiative. Electrical and electronics engineers must be able to apply their knowledge to new tasks in every project they undertake. In addition, they must engage in continuing education to keep up with changes in technology.

Interpersonal skills. Electrical and electronics engineers must be able to work with others during the manufacturing process to ensure that their plans are implemented correctly. This collaboration includes monitoring technicians and devising remedies to problems as they arise.

Math skills. Electrical and electronics engineers must be able to use the principles of calculus and other advanced math in order to analyze, design, and troubleshoot equipment.

Speaking skills. Electrical and electronics engineers work closely with other engineers and technicians. They must be able to explain their designs and reasoning clearly and to relay instructions during product development and production. They also may need to explain complex issues to customers who have little or no technical expertise.

Writing skills. Electrical and electronics engineers develop technical publications related to equipment they develop, including maintenance manuals, operation manuals, parts lists, product proposals, and design methods documents.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Licensure is not required for entry-level positions as electrical and electronics engineers. A Professional Engineering (PE) license, which allows for higher levels of leadership and independence, can be acquired later in one’s career. Licensed engineers are called professional engineers (PEs). A PE can oversee the work of other engineers, sign off on projects, and provide services directly to the public. State licensure generally requires

  • A degree from an ABET-accredited engineering program
  • A passing score on the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam
  • Relevant work experience
  • A passing score on the Professional Engineering (PE) exam

The initial Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam can be taken right after graduation from a college or university. Engineers who pass this exam commonly are called engineers in training (EITs) or engineer interns (EIs). After getting work experience, EITs can take the second exam, called the Principles and Practice of Engineering exam.

Several states require engineers to take continuing education courses to keep their license. Most states recognize licensure from other states if the licensing state’s requirements meet or exceed their own licensure requirements.

Advancement

Electrical and electronic engineers may advance to supervisory positions in which they lead a team of engineers and technicians. Some may move to management positions, working as engineering or program managers. Preparation for managerial positions usually requires working under the guidance of a more experienced engineer. For more information, see the profile on architectural and engineering managers.

For sales work, an engineering background enables engineers to discuss a product's technical aspects and assist in product planning and use. For more information, see the profile on sales engineers.

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Senior Electrical Designer Jobs

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Senior Electrical Designer Career Paths

Senior Electrical Designer
Design Coordinator Project Manager Construction Manager
Capital Project Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Electrical Project Manager Construction Manager
Commissioning Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Electrical Project Manager Master Electrician Electrical Engineer
Contract Electrical Engineer
10 Yearsyrs
Field Engineer Assistant Project Manager Controls Project Manager
Controls Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Principal Designer Design Supervisor
Design Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Project Engineer Senior Electrical Engineer
Electrical Engineer Lead
8 Yearsyrs
Lead Designer Project Manager Senior Project Manager
Engineering Director
13 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Consultant Lead Technician
Engineering Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Senior Electrical Engineer Senior Systems Engineer Engineering Manager
Engineering Operations Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Principal Designer Design Specialist Design Engineer
Engineering Supervisor
7 Yearsyrs
Senior Electrical Engineer Engineering Manager
Engineering/Maintenance Manager
12 Yearsyrs
Project Manager General Manager Maintenance Technician
Facilities Maintenance Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Project Engineer Senior Manufacturing Engineer
Manufacturing Engineering Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Field Engineer Mechanical Engineer Plant Engineer
Plant Engineering Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Senior Electrical Design Engineer Senior Electrical Engineer
Principal Electrical Engineer
14 Yearsyrs
Design Coordinator Computer Aided Design Designer Product Engineer
Product Engineering Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Lead Designer Design Engineer Project Engineer
Project Engineering Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Senior System Designer Lead Designer Design Engineer
Senior Electrical Engineer
11 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Senior Electrical Designer?

Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
Principal Designer 4.6 years
Controls Designer 2.9 years
Electrical Drafter 2.7 years
Top Employers Before
Designer 4.8%
Draftsman 1.8%
Top Employers After
Designer 3.9%

Do you work as a Senior Electrical Designer?

Senior Electrical Designer Demographics

Gender

Male

86.8%

Female

11.7%

Unknown

1.5%
Ethnicity

White

60.2%

Hispanic or Latino

16.9%

Black or African American

11.8%

Asian

7.2%

Unknown

4.0%
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Languages Spoken

Vietnamese

16.7%

Carrier

16.7%

Spanish

16.7%

Russian

16.7%

Thai

16.7%

Italian

16.7%
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Senior Electrical Designer Education

Schools

University of Houston

12.7%

Pennsylvania State University

10.1%

Houston Community College

7.6%

Pittsburgh Technical Institute

6.3%

Sam Houston State University

5.1%

Macomb Community College

5.1%

Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College

5.1%

Greenville Technical College

5.1%

Thomas Nelson Community College

3.8%

Anoka Technical College

3.8%

Texas State Technical College - Waco

3.8%

University of Phoenix

3.8%

Columbia Basin College

3.8%

Oklahoma State University

3.8%

Wentworth Institute of Technology

3.8%

Central Piedmont Community College

3.8%

More Tech Institute

3.8%

Camden County College

3.8%

Louisiana State University and A&M College

2.5%

Pima Community College

2.5%
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Majors

Electrical Engineering

23.3%

Drafting And Design

19.8%

Electrical Engineering Technology

11.8%

Engineering

7.7%

Business

6.5%

Mechanical Engineering

4.4%

Engineering Technology

2.7%

Industrial Technology

2.7%

Engineering And Industrial Management

2.7%

Management

2.4%

Education

2.1%

Computer Science

1.8%

Computer Applications

1.8%

Mechanical Engineering Technology

1.8%

Architecture

1.8%

Music

1.5%

Computer Engineering

1.5%

Graphic Design

1.5%

Project Management

1.5%

Electromechanical Instrumentation And Maintenance Technologies/Technicians

1.2%
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Degrees

Other

40.1%

Associate

25.3%

Bachelors

21.4%

Certificate

7.4%

Masters

3.7%

Diploma

1.4%

Doctorate

0.5%

License

0.2%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Real Senior Electrical Designer Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
SR. Electrical Pdms Designer Duke Marine Technical Services USA Houston, TX Mar 21, 2016 $181,272 -
$200,000
SR. Electrical Pdms Designer Duke Marine Technical Services USA Houston, TX Sep 16, 2015 $181,272 -
$200,000
SR. Pdms Electrical Designer Duke Marine Technical Services USA Houston, TX Oct 15, 2015 $162,786
SR. Electrical Pdms Designer Duke Marine Technical Services USA Houston, TX Oct 15, 2012 $146,090
Senior Electrical Pdms Designer Duke Marine Technical Services USA Inc. Mont Belvieu, TX Jan 10, 2016 $139,360
Senior Electrical Pdms Designer Duke Marine Technical Services USA Inc. Mont Belvieu, TX Aug 09, 2016 $139,360
Senior Electrical Pdms Designer Duke Marine Technical Services USA Inc. Mont Belvieu, TX Jan 10, 2016 $126,097
Electrical Senior Designer Bechtel Oil, Gas & Chemicals, Inc. Houston, TX Aug 17, 2016 $108,202 -
$133,800
Senior Electrical Designer SBM Atlantia, Inc. Houston, TX Oct 01, 2009 $106,900
Senior Electrical Designer SBM Atlantia, Inc. Houston, TX Sep 12, 2013 $105,934 -
$107,000
Senior Lead Electrical Designer SBM Atlantia, Inc. Houston, TX Sep 12, 2013 $105,934 -
$135,000
Senior Electrical Designer Global Edge Solutions, LLC TX Sep 18, 2014 $104,000
Senior Electrical Designer SBM Atlantia, Inc. Houston, TX Oct 01, 2012 $103,958 -
$119,000
Senior Designer, Electrical Department Ambitech Engineering Corporation Downers Grove, IL Jan 01, 2011 $102,263
Senior Electrical Designer II Chicago Bridge & Iron Company (Delaware) Plainfield, IL Sep 09, 2010 $97,490 -
$110,500
Senior Electrical Designer II Chicago Bridge & Iron Company (Delaware) Plainfield, IL Jan 04, 2010 $93,600
Electrical Senior Designer Bechtel Oil, Gas & Chemicals, Inc. Houston, TX Dec 07, 2016 $91,104 -
$133,800
Senior Electrical Designer I CB&I Inc. Houston, TX Jul 18, 2012 $87,391 -
$102,716
Senior Electrical Designer Bechtel Oil, Gas & Chemicals, Inc. Houston, TX Dec 23, 2014 $84,700 -
$129,276
SR. Electrical Designer II Chicago Bridge & Iron Company (Delaware) Houston, TX Mar 29, 2010 $83,347 -
$113,815
Electrical Senior Designer Bechtel Oil, Gas & Chemicals, Inc. Houston, TX Aug 15, 2013 $82,784 -
$124,800
SR. Electrical Designer II Chicago Bridge & Iron Company (Delaware) Houston, TX Jun 21, 2010 $80,058 -
$113,815

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Top Skills for A Senior Electrical Designer

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  1. Meal Trays
  2. RUN Conduit
  3. Control Panels
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Designed home run conduits and cables to the control center at the Mic building.
  • Executed daily operations of designing electrical control panels.
  • Design, draft, and published electrical schematics for worldwide placement of micro-processing fabrication equipment.
  • Direct electrical designer and drafter in preparing schematics and electrical hardware drawings - Review customer motor control center specifications per project
  • Design of Grounding, Lightning Protection, Medium & High Voltage for Class 1 Div.

How Would You Rate Working As a Senior Electrical Designer?

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Top Senior Electrical Designer Employers

Jobs From Top Senior Electrical Designer Employers

Senior Electrical Designer Videos

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