Engineering management is becoming more prominent as a field of study in higher education. A master's in engineering management is designed to arm an engineering graduate with the skills and knowledge required to bridge the gap in expertise between technology, management, and engineering. Engineers should have technical and managerial skills to thrive in the world of corporations. A master's in engineering management is among the most popular qualifications for international students with bachelor's degrees in engineering.
An MBA is no longer the only good route to gaining a managerial or leadership position with higher pay after a bachelor's in engineering. A degree such as a master's in engineering management is becoming increasingly popular as an alternative to an MBA for engineers of late. Keep reading to learn what engineering management is, what to look for in a master's program in this field, and a whole lot more.
Let’s dive right in…
What is Engineering Management?
It is a field of study specialised for engineers to help meet the high demand for engineering professionals with skills and knowledge in management subjects. The ultimate goal of engineering management courses is to develop future managers with a strong understanding of the engineering field. There is an increasing number of specialised degrees in engineering management to facilitate the development of the skills and knowledge necessary for managerial positions.
Through graduate-level engineering management courses, you will gain knowledge and skills in industrial engineering, in addition to knowledge of management and business concerns and techniques.
Who Should Pursue a Master's in Engineering Management?
It is perhaps an appropriate qualification for you if you seek a non-conventional master's degree after a bachelor's in science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (STEM). Any person with a bachelor's in engineering is eligible to apply to a university for a graduate degree in engineering management without any relevant work experience. It is worth gaining the master's qualification if you are keen on fields such as technological entrepreneurship, quality control, data analytics, intelligent management, and R&D management.
Benefits of Pursuing a Master's in Engineering Management
It is a qualification that ensures that your skills are in line with the requirements of the business you work for and adds a significant boost to your engineering career. Here are some ways in which a master's in engineering management can act as a career enhancer for you:
Opportunity to Learn from Expert Industry Professionals
Do you have little to no experience in a managerial role? If so, learning from engineering industry professionals with experience can help you improve your leadership skills. Top study destinations such as the USA and Australia have academics for engineering management who have plenty of experience in fields like aerospace, FMCG, defence, technology, sustainability, and IT. With their experience, the faculty understands the technical and managerial challenges that modern businesses face and find suitable ways to combat these challenges.
Besides, you will gain hands-on experience if you use your managerial skills and knowledge in a real-world environment, involving case studies with industry experts and academics. During a master's in engineering management, you can attend live webinars with alumni and guest speakers with vast experience in engineering and pick their brains to become a more well-rounded graduate.
Refocus On the Goals You Have in Mind for Your Career
In any phase of your career, pursuing a master's in engineering management will offer you the expertise and tools you need to focus on something new and progress to the next level. It is an ideal program for you if you wish to use your skills and knowledge in engineering in an entirely new environment or transition from a more technical position to one that requires managerial skills.
If you join a part-time master's in engineering management, you can keep working at the same time as you study and apply whatever new skills you obtain from the program to your existing role. It is also possible for other graduates to switch careers fully, as some universities accept applications from students with non-engineering backgrounds, subject to meeting their entry criteria.
Opportunity to Network with Employers and Fellow Students
A managerial position requires you to interact with different individuals while building a solid, effective team. If you network with potential employers and other engineering students during the degree program, it can aid you in developing key interpersonal skills.
The amalgamation of students in different career phases and from different academic backgrounds contributes to an array of perspectives in class, including new insights and innovative ideas.
Networking during a graduate degree in engineering management can also contribute to great career opportunities, especially if your college's faculty includes industry professionals with an interest in connecting you with their wider networks.
Develop Multidisciplinary Skills
As an engineering management graduate, you will need to have a unique set of skills to lead an engineering-driven enterprise and make meaningful contributions to society and business. You can gain such a skill set through a program that blends teaching across multiple fields of study, including engineering. For example, CQUniversity offers a master's program in management for engineers that offers a strong foundation in marketing, management, business analytics, human resources, sustainable business development, and innovation. The program at CQU can arm you with skills in project management to help you take charge of lean projects by expanding on your existing technical experience.
In today's business environment, it takes more than just an understanding of the technical aspects of engineering to be able to thrive in management and leadership roles. With the program at CQU, you can get into an entrepreneurial endeavour, a leadership position, or a consultancy role related to engineering.
Master's in Engineering Management: Entry Requirements
Many universities in the USA, as well as some universities in Australia and Canada, offer engineering management courses at the graduate level. Admission requirements may vary depending on your specific course and university, but here are some of the essential criteria for entry:
- A bachelor's in a STEM field from a recognised institution
- Proficiency in English
- Previous academic transcripts
If you have an interest or background in economics and/or business, it can also help boost your application. Further, a strong foundation in sociology and psychology, or the social sciences, can also help you better understand management at an organisational level.
Jobs After a Master's in Engineering Management
If you like to construct things, solve problems, and lead projects, a graduate degree in engineering management is for you. It can aid you in preparing for many roles that require construction, technical design, and managerial skills. Almost everyone with this master's degree has prior expertise in engineering. Assuming that you also have some expertise in this field, here are some of the most popular jobs for engineering management graduates:
- Project engineer
Average annual salary- USD 75,000
- Project manager
Average annual salary- USD 73,500
- Technical manager
Average annual salary- USD 99,000
- Operations manager
Average annual salary- USD 70,000
- Structural engineer
Average Salary- USD 75,000
- Application engineer
Average annual salary- USD 78,000
- Engineering project manager
Average annual salary- USD 99,000
- Automation engineer
Average annual salary- USD 82,000
- Hardware engineer
Average annual salary- USD 91,000
How Long is a Master's in Engineering Management?
Usually, it takes one to two years to complete the program and earn a master's degree in the engineering management field. However, if you join a part-time program, earning it is likely to take as much time as gaining a bachelor of science or BS in management engineering, depending on your university. In other words, the duration of the program differs depending on where you study and which specific degree you pursue.
What is the Difference Between a Master's in Engineering Management and an MBA?
There are quite a few differences between both programs. For one, considering the technical aspects of a graduate degree in engineering management versus an MBA, almost every applicant must have a bachelor's in a STEM field. Conversely, an MBA program accepts applicants from an array of disciplines at the undergraduate level, including economics, engineering, business, social sciences, hard sciences, and humanities.
How Much Does a Master's in Engineering Management Cost?
Tuition fees for any program vary from one university to another, and engineering management is no exception. If you want to pursue the Master of Management for Engineers at CQUniversity on a full-time basis, for instance, it may cost you around AUD 65,000 in tuition. Note that the aforementioned is only an indicative cost of studying, excluding things like accommodation, textbooks, general living expenses, and other expenses.
What Are the Admission Requirements for a Master's in Engineering Management?
The requirements to get into a master's program in engineering management also vary from university to university. Most universities, including CQU, require applicants to have bachelor's degrees in engineering or other STEM-related fields. However, there are some universities that accept non-STEM candidates as well. Every university will require you to prove your proficiency in English if you apply there for a program with engineering management subjects.
What Kind of Skills Will I Develop Through a Master's in Engineering Management?
You will expand on your existing engineering skills and knowledge while developing a broad set of managerial skills to lead multidisciplinary teams. Undoubtedly, the skills you develop from engineering management courses will give you a competitive edge on the job market.
For more information regarding engineering management as an emerging discipline in higher education, contact our expert counsellors.