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Become A Senior Mechanical Designer

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Working As A Senior Mechanical Designer

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

  • Make Decisions

  • $98,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Senior Mechanical Designer Do

Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers research, design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

Duties

Mechanical engineers typically do the following:

  • Analyze problems to see how mechanical and thermal devices might help solve a particular problem
  • Design or redesign mechanical and thermal devices or subsystems, using analysis and computer-aided design
  • Develop and test prototypes of devices they design
  • Analyze the test results and change the design or system as needed
  • Oversee the manufacturing process for the device

Mechanical engineers design and oversee the manufacture of many products ranging from medical devices to new batteries.

Mechanical engineers design power-producing machines, such as electric generators, internal combustion engines, and steam and gas turbines, as well as power-using machines, such as refrigeration and air-conditioning systems.

Mechanical engineers design other machines inside buildings, such as elevators and escalators. They also design material-handling systems, such as conveyor systems and automated transfer stations.

Like other engineers, mechanical engineers use computers extensively. Mechanical engineers are routinely responsible for the integration of sensors, controllers, and machinery. Computer technology helps mechanical engineers create and analyze designs, run simulations and test how a machine is likely to work, interact with connected systems, and generate specifications for parts.

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How To Become A Senior Mechanical Designer

Mechanical engineers typically need a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering or mechanical engineering technology. Mechanical engineers who sell services publicly must be licensed in all states and the District of Columbia.

Education

Mechanical engineers typically need a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering or mechanical engineering technology. Mechanical engineering programs usually include courses in mathematics and life and physical sciences, as well as engineering and design courses. Mechanical engineering technology programs focus less on theory and more on the practical application of engineering principles. They may emphasize internships and co-ops to prepare students for work in industry.

Some colleges and universities offer 5-year programs that allow students to obtain both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree. Some 5-year or even 6-year cooperative plans combine classroom study with practical work, enabling students to gain valuable experience and earn money to finance part of their education.

ABET accredits programs in engineering and engineering technology. Most employers prefer to hire students from an accredited program. A degree from an ABET-accredited program is usually necessary to become a licensed professional engineer.

Important Qualities

Creativity. Mechanical engineers design and build complex pieces of equipment and machinery. A creative mind is essential for this kind of work.

Listening skills. Mechanical engineers often work on projects with others, such as architects and computer scientists. They must listen to and analyze different approaches made by other experts to complete the task at hand.

Math skills. Mechanical engineers use the principles of calculus, statistics, and other advanced subjects in math for analysis, design, and troubleshooting in their work.

Mechanical skills. Mechanical skills allow engineers to apply basic engineering concepts and mechanical processes to the design of new devices and systems.

Problem-solving skills. Mechanical engineers need good problem-solving skills to take scientific discoveries and use them to design and build useful products.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Licensure is not required for entry-level positions as a mechanical engineer. 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, typically at least 4 years
  • A passing score on the Professional Engineering (PE) exam

The initial FE exam can be taken after one earns a bachelor’s degree. Engineers who pass this exam are commonly called engineers in training (EITs) or engineer interns (EIs). After meeting work experience requirements, EITs and EIs can take the second exam, called the Principles and Practice of Engineering.

Several states require engineers to take continuing education to renew their licenses every year. Most states recognize licensure from other states, as long as the other state’s licensing requirements meet or exceed their own licensing requirements.

Several professional organizations offer a variety of certification programs for engineers to demonstrate competency in specific fields of mechanical engineering.

Advancement

A Ph.D. is essential for engineering faculty positions in higher education, as well as for some research and development programs. Mechanical engineers may earn graduate degrees in engineering or business administration to learn new technology, broaden their education, and enhance their project management skills. Mechanical engineers may become administrators or managers after obtaining the requisite experience.

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Senior Mechanical Designer Career Paths

Senior Mechanical Designer
Design Checker Senior Designer Manufacturing Engineer
Engineering/Maintenance Manager
12 Yearsyrs
Lead Designer Project Engineer Facility Engineer
Facilities/Engineering Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Engineering Manager Consulting Engineer Senior Mechanical Engineer
Lead Mechanical Engineer
8 Yearsyrs
Engineer Engineering Manager Operations Manager
Plant Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Lead Designer Design Engineer Process Engineer
Process Engineering Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Design Checker Engineer Process Engineer
Process Engineering Supervisor
6 Yearsyrs
Design Consultant Senior Consultant Product Manager
Product Line Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Engineering Manager Contracting Engineer Quality Engineer
Quality Supervisor
7 Yearsyrs
Senior Piping Designer Design Supervisor Senior Electrical Designer
Senior Electrical Design Engineer
11 Yearsyrs
Research And Development Engineer Research Scientist Process Engineer
Senior Manufacturing Process Engineer
11 Yearsyrs
Senior Mechanical Engineer Engineering Manager Operations Manager
Senior Operations Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Senior Product Designer Design Engineer Development Engineer
Senior Packaging Engineer
7 Yearsyrs
Engineer Process Engineer Quality Engineer
Senior Quality Engineer
10 Yearsyrs
Research And Development Engineer Field Service Technician Service Engineer
Senior Service Engineer
7 Yearsyrs
Design Consultant Design Manager Operations Manager
Site Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Senior Piping Designer Lead Designer Design Engineer
Staff Engineer
5 Yearsyrs
Senior Mechanical Engineer Project Manager Program Manager
Supply Chain Manager
10 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Senior Mechanical Designer?

Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
Machine Designer 4.3 years
Senior Designer 4.1 years
Top Careers Before Senior Mechanical Designer
Designer 5.3%
Draftsman 3.5%
Drafter 2.0%
Engineer 1.8%
Top Careers After Senior Mechanical Designer
Designer 3.9%
Engineer 3.3%
Consultant 1.5%

Do you work as a Senior Mechanical Designer?

Senior Mechanical Designer Demographics

Gender

Male

92.0%

Female

5.7%

Unknown

2.3%
Ethnicity

White

59.5%

Hispanic or Latino

15.6%

Asian

10.8%

Black or African American

9.8%

Unknown

4.3%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

26.5%

Carrier

12.2%

French

10.2%

Chinese

10.2%

Mandarin

9.2%

German

8.2%

Russian

5.1%

Italian

3.1%

Portuguese

3.1%

Dutch

2.0%

Swahili

1.0%

Vietnamese

1.0%

Romanian

1.0%

Lakota

1.0%

Hindi

1.0%

Czech

1.0%

Hungarian

1.0%

Ukrainian

1.0%

Norwegian

1.0%

Croatian

1.0%
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Senior Mechanical Designer Education

Schools

Northeastern University

10.9%

San Jose State University

6.9%

Rochester Institute of Technology

6.5%

University of Massachusetts - Lowell

6.5%

University of Houston

6.5%

University of Colorado at Boulder

6.0%

Pennsylvania State University

4.4%

Houston Community College

4.4%

University of Phoenix

4.4%

Purdue University

4.4%

University of South Florida

4.0%

Wentworth Institute of Technology

4.0%

University of Akron

4.0%

New Jersey Institute of Technology

4.0%

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

4.0%

De Anza College

4.0%

A-Technical College

4.0%

Santa Clara University

3.6%

Pittsburgh Technical Institute

3.6%

State University of New York College of Technology at Alfred

3.6%
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Majors

Mechanical Engineering

36.9%

Drafting And Design

23.4%

Mechanical Engineering Technology

8.2%

Business

5.0%

Engineering

4.6%

Engineering Technology

2.9%

Graphic Design

2.5%

Industrial Technology

2.4%

Engineering And Industrial Management

2.0%

Project Management

1.8%

Electrical Engineering

1.5%

Management

1.3%

Electrical Engineering Technology

1.1%

Civil Engineering

1.1%

Education

1.0%

Environmental Control Technologies/Technicians

1.0%

Architecture

0.9%

Manufacturing Engineering

0.8%

Aerospace Engineering

0.8%

General Studies

0.8%
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Degrees

Bachelors

32.2%

Other

25.0%

Associate

22.3%

Masters

12.9%

Certificate

5.3%

Diploma

1.4%

Doctorate

1.0%

License

0.1%
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Real Senior Mechanical Designer Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Senior Design Engineer, Mechanics Nokia USA Inc. Sunnyvale, CA Jan 09, 2016 $156,991
Senior Mechanical Design Engineer Baidu USA LLC Sunnyvale, CA Jun 27, 2016 $150,000
Senior Design Engineer, Mechanics Nokia USA Inc. Sunnyvale, CA Apr 09, 2016 $132,376
Senior Mechanical Design Engineer Tesla Motors, Inc. Palo Alto, CA Dec 28, 2015 $130,000 -
$140,000
Senior Design Engineer, Mechanics Nokia USA Inc. Sunnyvale, CA Mar 31, 2016 $128,520
Senior Design Engineer, Mechanics Nokia USA Inc. Sunnyvale, CA Aug 27, 2015 $128,500
SR. Mechanical Engineers-Equip. Design (Mult. Openings) Bayer Materialscience LLC Baytown, TX Jan 06, 2016 $126,381
SR. Mechanical Design Engineer Ut-Battelle, LLC (Oak Ridge National Laboratory) Oak Ridge, TN Mar 25, 2016 $125,823
SR. Mechanical Design Engineer-Propulsion Systems Tesla Motors, Inc. Palo Alto, CA Jan 05, 2015 $120,000 -
$135,000
SR. Mechanical Design Engineer Tesla Motors, Inc. Sparks, NV Aug 17, 2016 $117,000 -
$127,000
Senior Mechanical Design Engineer Tesla Motorsinc Palo Alto, CA Nov 25, 2015 $116,000
Senior Mechanical Engineer, Rotating Equipment Design Energy Recovery, Inc. San Leandro, CA Aug 01, 2015 $115,000
SR. Mechanical Design Engineer Tesla Motors, Inc. Palo Alto, CA Oct 01, 2015 $115,000 -
$125,000
Senior Mechanical Design Engineer Fluidic, Inc. Scottsdale, AZ Jan 08, 2016 $115,000
Senior Cell Mechanical Design Engineer A123 Systems, LLC Livonia, MI Sep 21, 2016 $98,783 -
$131,674
Senior Cell Mechanical Design Engineer A123 Systems LLC Livonia, MI Mar 28, 2016 $98,783 -
$131,674
SR. Mechanical Design Engineer Tesla Motors, Inc. Palo Alto, CA Jan 10, 2016 $98,000 -
$108,000
SR. Mechanical Design Engineer Medtronic, Inc. Mounds View, MN Aug 31, 2016 $97,000
SR. Mechanical Design Engineer Medtronic, Inc. Mounds View, MN Sep 01, 2015 $97,000
SR. Mechanical Design Engineer Medtronic, Inc. Brooklyn Park, MN Jun 05, 2016 $95,680
SR. Mechanical Design Engineer Medtronic, Inc. Mounds View, MN Sep 16, 2015 $95,014 -
$96,194
Senior Engineer, Mechanical Design and Development Engineer Xerox Corporation Webster, NY Aug 18, 2015 $95,000
Senior Mechanical Design Engineer ASCO Power Technologies, L.P. Florham Park, NJ May 01, 2015 $78,603 -
$98,130
Senior Mechanical Design Engineer ASCO Power Technologies, L.P. Florham Park, NJ Jan 05, 2015 $78,603 -
$98,130
Senior Design Engineer-Mechanical Racar Engineering LLC Auburn Hills, MI Sep 09, 2016 $78,000
SR. Design Engineer-Mechanical Stryker Instruments, A Division of Stryker Corporation Kalamazoo, MI Aug 19, 2015 $78,000
SR. Mechanical Design Engineer Pentair Filtration Solutions, LLC Conroe, TX Jan 19, 2016 $77,085
SR. Mechanical Design Engineer LHP Software, LLC Columbus, IN Aug 24, 2016 $76,232
Senior Design Engineer-Mechanical Racar Engineering LLC Auburn Hills, MI Sep 09, 2016 $76,000

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AVERAGE SALARY FOR A Senior Mechanical Designer

Average Yearly Salary
$98,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$75,000
Min 10%
$98,000
Median 50%
$98,000
Median 50%
$98,000
Median 50%
$98,000
Median 50%
$98,000
Median 50%
$98,000
Median 50%
$98,000
Median 50%
$127,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
KBR
Highest Paying City
Burlingame, CA
Highest Paying State
California
Avg Experience Level
5.8 years
How much does a Senior Mechanical Designer make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Senior Mechanical Designer in the United States is $98,470 per year or $47 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $75,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $128,000.

How Would You Rate The Salary Of a Senior Mechanical Designer?

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Top Skills for A Senior Mechanical Designer

  1. Layout
  2. Engineering Department
  3. Autocad
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Developed engineering best practice-based procedures for conveyor system layout and design.
  • Coordinate with electrical engineering department all machine orders being processed by engineering.
  • Utilized MicroStation V8, I/RAS B, AutoCAD 2005 and surveying level.
  • Researched assignments and developed complex mechanical designs including development of associated three dimensional solid models and manufacturing drawings.
  • Developed CAD models and computational analysis (structural/thermal) models for electronic packaging/electrical components and valve assemblies.

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Top 10 Best States for Senior Mechanical Designers

  1. California
  2. Arizona
  3. District of Columbia
  4. New Hampshire
  5. Alaska
  6. Texas
  7. Delaware
  8. Massachusetts
  9. New Mexico
  10. Louisiana
  • (2,329 jobs)
  • (251 jobs)
  • (81 jobs)
  • (100 jobs)
  • (15 jobs)
  • (1,035 jobs)
  • (30 jobs)
  • (527 jobs)
  • (41 jobs)
  • (94 jobs)

Top Senior Mechanical Designer Employers

Jobs From Top Senior Mechanical Designer Employers

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