Mechanical Engineering Technologists and Technicians

Career, Salary and Education Information

What They Do: Mechanical engineering technologists and technicians help mechanical engineers design, develop, test, and manufacture mechanical devices.

Work Environment: Mechanical engineering technologists and technicians assist with manufacturing processes in factories or with development phases in research and development labs before manufacturing takes place.

How to Become One: Most employers prefer to hire candidates with an associate’s degree or other postsecondary training in mechanical engineering technology. Prospective engineering technicians should take as many science and math courses as possible while in high school.

Salary: The median annual wage for mechanical engineering technologists and technicians is $56,980.

Job Outlook: Employment of mechanical engineering technologists and technicians is projected to grow 3 percent over the next ten years, about as fast as the average for all occupations. There should be opportunities for those who can master new software and technology in addition to traditional manual skills.

Related Careers: Compare the job duties, education, job growth, and pay of mechanical engineering technologists and technicians with similar occupations.

Following is everything you need to know about a career as a mechanical engineering technologist or technician with lots of details. As a first step, take a look at some of the following jobs, which are real jobs with real employers. You will be able to see the very real job career requirements for employers who are actively hiring. The link will open in a new tab so that you can come back to this page to continue reading about the career:

Top 3 Mechanical Engineering Technician Jobs

  • Mechanical Engineering Technician - Fresh Consulting - Redmond, WA

    Mechanical Engineering Technician Duration: Project - Long-Term Vendor Contract Location: Redmond, WA Benefits: Employee benefits at 100% including Medical, PTO, Holiday Pay, 401K Plan and much more

  • Engineering Technician IV - Saalex Solutions - Poulsbo, WA

    Description: The Engineering Technician IV performs assignments of substantial variety and ... of mechanisms ; conventional piping systems; and building site layouts. Conducts tests or ...

  • Senior Engineering Technician - AvtechTyee Inc - Everett, WA

    Senior Engineering Technician Come join a winning team where you can make a real difference ... mechanical , optical and software capabilities. AvtechTyee offers great benefits and a focus on ...

See all Mechanical Engineering Technician jobs

What Mechanical Engineering Technologists and Technicians Do[About this section] [To Top]

Mechanical engineering technologists and technicians help mechanical engineers design, develop, test, and manufacture mechanical devices, including tools, engines, and machines. They may make sketches and rough layouts, record and analyze data, make calculations and estimates, and report their findings.

Duties of Mechanical Engineering Technologists and Technicians

Mechanical engineering technologists and technicians typically do the following:

  • Evaluate design drawings for new or changed tools by measuring dimensions on the drawings and comparing them with the original specifications
  • Prepare layouts and drawings of parts to be made and of the process for putting the parts together, often using three-dimensional design software
  • Discuss changes with coworkers—for example, in the design of a part and in the way it will be made and assembled
  • Review instructions and blueprints for projects in order to ensure that test specifications and procedures are followed and objectives are met
  • Plan, produce, and assemble new or changed mechanical parts for products, such as industrial machinery or equipment
  • Set up and conduct tests of complete units and their components, and record results
  • Compare test results with design specifications and with test objectives and make recommendations for changes in products or in test methods
  • Estimate labor costs, equipment life, and plant space

Some mechanical engineering technologists and technicians test and inspect machines and equipment or work with engineers to eliminate production problems. For example, they may assist in testing products by setting up instrumentation for vehicle crash tests.

Work Environment for Mechanical Engineering Technologists and Technicians[About this section] [To Top]

Mechanical engineering technologists and technicians hold about 43,500 jobs. The largest employers of mechanical engineering technologists and technicians are as follows:

Architectural, engineering, and related services 21%
Machinery manufacturing 15%
Transportation equipment manufacturing 12%
Scientific research and development services 6%
Computer and electronic product manufacturing 6%

Some mechanical engineering technologists and technicians may be exposed to hazards from equipment, chemicals, or toxic materials, but injuries are rare as long as proper procedures are followed.

Mechanical Engineering Technologist and Technician Work Schedules

Most mechanical engineering technologists and technicians work full time.

How to Become a Mechanical Engineering Technician[About this section] [To Top]

Get the education you need: Find schools for Mechanical Engineering Technologists and Technicians near you!

Mechanical engineering technologists and technicians typically need an associate’s degrees or other postsecondary training to enter the occupation.

Mechanical Engineering Technologist and Technician Education

Mechanical engineering technologists and technicians typically need an associate's degree or a certificate from a community college or vocational-technical school. Community colleges offer programs similar to those in technical institutes but include more theory-based and liberal arts coursework and programs. Community colleges typically award an associate's degree. Vocational–technical schools include postsecondary public institutions that emphasize training needed by local employers. Students who complete these programs typically receive a diploma or certificate.

ABET accredits associate's degree programs in relevant fields of study, such as mechanical engineering technology.

Completing an associate's degree in mechanical engineering technology is good preparation for studying for a bachelor's degree.

High school students interested in becoming mechanical engineering technologists and technicians should take classes in math, science, and computer skills. Courses that help students develop skills working with their hands also are valuable because these technicians build what mechanical engineers design.

Important Qualities for Mechanical Engineering Technologists and Technicians

Communication skills. Mechanical engineering technologists and technicians must be able to clearly understand and follow instructions or ask their supervisors for clarification if they do not understand. They must be able to clearly explain, both orally and in writing, the need for changes in designs or test procedures.

Creativity. Mechanical engineering technologists and technicians help mechanical engineers bring their plans and designs to life. This often requires helping the engineer to overcome problems that might not have been anticipated.

Detail oriented. Mechanical engineering technologists and technicians must make precise measurements and keep accurate records for mechanical engineers.

Math skills. Mechanical engineering technologists and technicians use mathematics for analysis, design, and troubleshooting in their work.

Mechanical skills. Mechanical engineering technologists and technicians must apply theory and instructions from engineers by making new components for industrial machinery or equipment. They may need to be able to operate machinery such as drill presses, grinders, and engine lathes.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations for Mechanical Engineering Technologists and Technicians

The National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET) offers four levels of certification through its technician certification programs. Mechanical engineering technologists and technicians can obtain certification in industrial instrumentation by passing an examination. In addition, an engineering technician's supervisor must verify the competency of the candidate for certification.

Mechanical Engineering Technologist and Technician Salaries[About this section] [More salary/earnings info] [To Top]

The median annual wage for mechanical engineering technologists and technicians is $58,230. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $36,200, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $91,320.

The median annual wages for mechanical engineering technologists and technicians in the top industries in which they work are as follows:

Scientific research and development services $62,720
Computer and electronic product manufacturing $60,820
Architectural, engineering, and related services $58,230
Transportation equipment manufacturing $57,720
Machinery manufacturing $56,850

Most mechanical engineering technologists and technicians work full time.

Job Outlook for Mechanical Engineering Technologists and Technicians[About this section] [To Top]

Employment of mechanical engineering technologists and technicians is projected to grow 3 percent over the next ten years, about as fast as the average for all occupations. Firms may contract the work of mechanical engineering technologists and technicians from industries that provide engineering services, research and development, and consulting services. Contracting for this work allows firms to hire these services at a lower cost than employing in-house technicians.

Mechanical engineering technologists and technicians may find work as assistants to mechanical engineers and thus work in emerging fields, such as automation, three-dimensional printing, robotics, and alternative energies.

See all engineering jobs.

Job Prospects for Mechanical Engineering Technologists and Technicians

Mastering new technology and software will likely become more important for workers in this occupation. Those who gain skills to help deploy the latest technological developments, such as three-dimensional design software, should have the best job prospects.

Employment projections data for Mechanical Engineering Technologists and Technicians, 2019-29
Occupational Title Employment, 2019 Projected Employment, 2029 Change, 2019-29
Percent Numeric
Mechanical engineering technologists and technicians 43,500 44,900 3 1,400


A portion of the information on this page is used by permission of the U.S. Department of Labor.


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