Electronic Engineer

    Industry: Engineering

    Summary: Electronic engineers research and develop a wide range of equipment and components which use electronics, including telecommunications systems and computer-controlled systems.

    Average salary: The figures below are only a guide. Actual pay rates may vary, depending on: where you work the size of the company or organisation you work for the demand for the job.The starting salary for electronic engineers at graduate entry is usually around £20,000 to £29,000 a year. With experience this can rise to £30,000 to £55,000 a year or more.

    The requirements

    • communication skills
    • normal colour vision
    • IT skills
    • organisational
    • teamwork
    • able to motivate staff
    • able to work alone
    • handling complex information
    • health and safety awareness
    • responsible
    • First Degree
    • HNC
    • HND
    • electrical engineering
    • electronic engineering
    • science
    • maths

    Read further information about this career



    Electronic Engineers research develop equipment components computer telecommunications

    The work

    You could be:

    • discussing a client's requirements and drawing up plans
    • working on the design, production and testing of electronic components such as integrated circuits, memory devices, resistors, connectors and printed circuit boards
    • working on the design, production and testing of other electronic equipment such as scanners, timing devices, medical apparatus and robotic systems
    • working on telecommunications equipment and systems, including television services, telephone systems, digital exchanges and networks, optical cables, aerials and satellites
    • working on the electronic control systems used in manufacturing industry, defence systems, ship and aircraft navigation or hospitals
    • providing electronics expertise in a wide range of other industries, including broadcasting, oil and gas, transport and all kinds of manufacturing
    • supervising the work of electronics technicians and craftspeople
    • writing technical reports and giving presentations
    • planning and managing projects and budgets.


    • Working conditions vary according to the work, but many electronic engineers are based in offices or modern design laboratories and work normal hours.
    • In some factory situations, however, conditions may be more noisy or dirty.
    • You may have to be on call outside normal hours or to work shifts.
    • You may have to travel to visit clients and work on site.

    Getting in

    • You would normally need a Higher National Certificate (HNC), Higher National Diploma (HND) or degree in a subject such as electronic and electrical engineering. Other subjects such as systems engineering, computer engineering or physics and applied physics, may be acceptable.
    • For entry to an HNC or HND course you normally need 1-2 Highers plus some subjects at Standard grade Credit level or National 5. For a degree course you need 3-5 Highers including Maths and Physics or a technological subject.
    • You may be able to qualify by other training routes.
    • You should have normal colour vision to work with electrical wiring.
    Electronic engineers work in a wide range of industries including aerospace, telecommunications, IT, energy, gas, water, manufacturing and defence. There are also opportunities in educational institutions and the public sector. There is a considerable demand for electronic engineers.

    What does it take

    You need to have:

    • a strong interest and ability in maths, science and technology
    • technical and IT skills
    • a creative and analytical approach to solving problems
    • good communication skills
    • a good understanding of health and safety issues.
    You need to be able to:
    • handle complex information and develop clear ideas
    • understand and produce technical drawings
    • manage projects and meet deadlines
    • plan and organise programmes of work and motivate others
    • keep within a budget
    • take responsibility and make decisions
    • work on your own as well as part of a team.


    • You may be able to follow a graduate trainee scheme.
    • After gaining your HNC, HND or degree and some further training with an employer, you can register with the Engineering Council as a professional engineer - either Incorporated Engineer (IEng) or Chartered Engineer (CEng).
    • For IEng you need to have either a recognised Bachelors degree or a recognised HNC or HND plus further study to Bachelors degree level.
    • For CEng you need to have a recognised Bachelors degree with Honours plus a recognised Masters degree (or equivalent), or a recognised integrated Master of Engineering (MEng) degree.
    • If you do not have any of the above qualifications, you may still be able to achieve IEng or CEng by other approved routes. You can check these alternative routes with the Engineering Council or with the appropriate professional engineering institution.
    • You must keep up to date with advances in technology throughout your career.

    More Information

    • The Engineering Council sets and maintains the standards of the engineering profession in the UK. It does so through 36 professional engineering institutions which are Licensed Members of the Engineering Council.
    • The Tomorrow’s Engineers website has more information on careers in engineering.


    Institution of Engineering and Technology
    Michael Faraday House Six Hills Way Stevenage Hertfordshire SG1 2AY
    Tel: 01438 313311
    Email: postmaster@theiet.org
    Website: http://www.theiet.org/

    Institute of Measurement and Control
    87 Gower Street London WC1E 6AF
    Tel: 020 7387 4949
    Website: http://www.instmc.org.uk/

    Engineering Council
    246 High Holborn London WC1V 7EX
    Tel: 020 3206 0500
    Website: http://www.engc.org.uk/

    SEMTA (Science, Engineering and Manufacturing Technologies Alliance)
    Scottish Engineering Centre 105 West George Street Glasgow G2 1QL
    Tel: 0141 221 3181
    Email: customerservices@semta.org.uk
    Website: http://www.semta.org.uk/
    Website: http://www.scottishengineering.org.uk/
    Notes: SEMTA is the Sector Skills Council for science, engineering and manufacturing technologies.

    Science Council
    Hodgkin Huxley House 30 Farringdon Lane Clerkenwell London EC1R 3AW
    Tel: 020 3434 2020
    Website: http://www.sciencecouncil.org/
    Notes: The Science Council promotes the advancement and dissemination of knowledge of and education in science, technology, mathematics, computing and information technology. It awards the designation of Chartered Scientist (CSci) to those candidates who can meet the high standards required.

    Weston House 246 High Holburn London WC1V 7EX
    Tel: 020 3206 0400
    Website: http://www.engineeringuk.com

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