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Become A Staff Electrical Engineer

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Working As A Staff Electrical Engineer

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

  • $105,194

    Average Salary

What Does A Staff Electrical Engineer 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 Staff Electrical Engineer

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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Staff Electrical Engineer Jobs

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Staff Electrical Engineer Demographics

Gender

Male

88.1%

Female

7.0%

Unknown

4.9%
Ethnicity

White

53.8%

Asian

17.8%

Hispanic or Latino

13.3%

Black or African American

9.6%

Unknown

5.5%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Russian

23.1%

Carrier

15.4%

Spanish

15.4%

Bulgarian

7.7%

Chinese

7.7%

Vietnamese

7.7%

German

7.7%

French

7.7%

Mandarin

7.7%
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Staff Electrical Engineer Education

Schools

New Jersey Institute of Technology

8.6%

San Jose State University

7.1%

Ohio State University

7.1%

Marquette University

5.7%

University of Nebraska - Lincoln

5.7%

Pennsylvania State University

5.7%

Northeastern University

5.7%

University of Alabama

4.3%

Georgia Institute of Technology -

4.3%

Drexel University

4.3%

University of Illinois at Chicago

4.3%

University of Central Florida

4.3%

Iowa State University

4.3%

Tufts University

4.3%

Colorado Technical University

4.3%

University of Pittsburgh -

4.3%

Illinois Institute of Technology

4.3%

University of Oklahoma

4.3%

Portland State University

4.3%

Michigan Technological University

2.9%
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Majors

Electrical Engineering

66.2%

Business

6.5%

Electrical Engineering Technology

6.0%

Project Management

3.7%

Computer Engineering

3.7%

Engineering And Industrial Management

2.3%

Management

1.9%

Industrial Technology

1.4%

Alternative And Complementary Medical Support Services

0.9%

Engineering

0.9%

Physics

0.9%

Electrical/Electronics Maintenance And Repair Technology

0.9%

Marketing

0.9%

Computer Engineering Technology

0.9%

Systems Engineering

0.5%

Science, Technology, And Society

0.5%

International Business

0.5%

Medical Technician

0.5%

Legal Research And Advanced Professional Studies

0.5%

Mathematics

0.5%
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Degrees

Bachelors

47.0%

Masters

38.3%

Other

8.7%

Doctorate

3.9%

Certificate

1.3%

Associate

0.9%
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Real Staff Electrical Engineer Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Electrical Staff Engineer Skyworks Solutions, Inc. San Jose, CA Nov 14, 2016 $155,118
Electrical Staff Engineer Skyworks Solutions, Inc. Santa Clara, CA Nov 24, 2013 $141,128
Electrical Staff Engineer Skyworks Solutions, Inc. Santa Clara, CA Jan 16, 2013 $141,128
Electrical Staff Engineer Skyworks Solutions, Inc. Santa Clara, CA Jan 07, 2013 $141,128
Electrical Staff Engineer Skyworks Solutions, Inc. Santa Clara, CA Oct 01, 2014 $140,904
Electrical Staff Engineer Skyworks Solutions, Inc. Santa Clara, CA Sep 18, 2015 $140,000
Staff Electrical Engineer Saulsbury Industries Inc. Houston, TX Dec 12, 2015 $139,360
Staff Electrical Engineer Olympus NDT Ne Inc. Waltham, MA Nov 11, 2013 $135,000
Electrical Staff Engineer Skyworks Solutions, Inc. San Jose, CA Oct 10, 2016 $135,000
Electrical Staff Engineer Skyworks Solutions, Inc. Santa Clara, CA Sep 12, 2014 $134,346
Electrical Staff Engineer Skyworks Solutions, Inc. Santa Clara, CA Jun 05, 2016 $134,275
Electrical Staff Engineer Skyworks Solutions, Inc. Woburn, MA Apr 10, 2013 $109,442
Senior Staff Electrical Engineer Continental Automotive Systems Holding Us, Inc. Auburn Hills, MI Aug 28, 2014 $107,988 -
$121,659
Electrical Staff Engineer Skyworks Solutions, Inc. Cedar Rapids, IA Jan 15, 2014 $106,903
Senior Staff Electrical Engineer Continental Automotive Systems Holding Us, Inc. Dearborn, MI Aug 23, 2016 $106,497 -
$126,742
Staff Electrical Engineer Sunpower Corporation Austin, TX Aug 24, 2014 $105,581
Senior Staff Electrical Engineer Continental Automotive Systems Holding Us, Inc. Dearborn, MI Aug 03, 2016 $105,060 -
$125,316
Senior Staff Electrical Engineer Continental Automotive Systems Holding Us, Inc. Dearborn, MI Feb 05, 2014 $103,000 -
$121,659
Staff Electrical Engineer Goodrich Corporation Phoenix, AZ Feb 09, 2016 $102,898 -
$109,100
Staff Electrical Engineer Burns & McDonnell Engineering Company, Inc. Wallingford, CT Sep 28, 2016 $93,122
Staff Electrical Engineer Burns & McDonnell Engineering Company, Inc. Wallingford, CT Sep 29, 2015 $93,122
Staff Electrical Engineer Burns & McDonnell Engineering Company, Inc. Wallingford, CT Feb 02, 2015 $92,872
Staff Electrical Engineer Burns & McDonnell Engineering Company, Inc. Centennial, CO Apr 08, 2016 $92,568
Staff Electrical Engineer Burns & McDonnell Engineering Company, Inc. Houston, TX Apr 01, 2013 $91,845
Staff Electrical Engineer Burns & McDonnell Engineering Company, Inc. Kansas City, MO Sep 22, 2015 $90,948
Senior Staff Electrical Engineer Continental Automotive Systems Holding Us, Inc. Dearborn, MI Aug 16, 2015 $90,881 -
$125,316

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Top Skills for A Staff Electrical Engineer

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  1. Hardware Design
  2. Mass Production
  3. Analog
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Analyzed schematics and specifications to determine software and hardware designs for test equipment.
  • Support mass production and drive down defect rate and monitor quality.
  • Improved analog shunt circuit functionality, reliability, robustness and packaging.
  • Designed audio subsystem with noise isolation, modifying PCB layout and adding filter components to successfully eliminate electromagnetic interference.
  • Developed and integrated GSM antenna system and developed verification plan for its radiated performance in mass market handsets.

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Top 10 Best States for Staff Electrical Engineers

  1. California
  2. Massachusetts
  3. New Mexico
  4. Washington
  5. New Hampshire
  6. Alaska
  7. District of Columbia
  8. Rhode Island
  9. Virginia
  10. Arizona
  • (6,136 jobs)
  • (1,195 jobs)
  • (161 jobs)
  • (1,027 jobs)
  • (341 jobs)
  • (47 jobs)
  • (309 jobs)
  • (81 jobs)
  • (1,634 jobs)
  • (581 jobs)

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