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Career and Education Opportunities for Industrial Engineers in Elgin, Illinois

If you want to be an industrial engineer, the Elgin, Illinois area offers many opportunities both for education and employment. Currently, 7,530 people work as industrial engineers in Illinois. This is expected to grow by 29% to about 9,680 people by 2016. This is better than the national trend for industrial engineers, which sees this job pool growing by about 14.2% over the next eight years. Industrial engineers generally design, develop, and evaluate integrated systems for managing industrial production processes including human work factors, quality control, inventory control, logistics and material flow, cost analysis, and production coordination.

A person working as an industrial engineer can expect to earn about $33 hourly or $69,140 per year on average in Illinois and about $35 hourly or $73,820 yearly on average in the U.S. as a whole. Earnings for industrial engineers are not quite as good as earnings in the general category of Engineering in Illinois and not quite as good as general Engineering category earnings nationally. Industrial engineers work in a variety of jobs, including: factory engineer, district plant engineer, and test inspection engineer.

There are sixty-one schools of higher education in the Elgin area, including one within twenty-five miles of Elgin where you can get a degree to start your career as an industrial engineer. Industrial engineers usually hold a Bachelor's degree, so it will take about four years to learn to be an industrial engineer if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Industrial Engineer

Industrial Engineer video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, industrial engineers design, develop, and evaluate integrated systems for managing industrial production processes including human work factors, quality control, inventory control, logistics and material flow, cost analysis, and production coordination.

Industrial engineers recommend methods for improving utilization of personnel and utilities. They also talk with vendors and management personnel regarding purchases and project status. Equally important, industrial engineers have to design manufacturing methods, labor utilization standards, and cost analysis systems to promote efficient staff and facility utilization. They are often called upon to estimate production costs and effects of product layout changes for management review and control. They are expected to communicate with management and user personnel to evolve production and layout standards. Finally, industrial engineers direct quality control objectives and efforts to deal with production problems, maximize product reliability, and minimize cost.

Every day, industrial engineers are expected to be able to think through problems and come up with general rules. They need to prioritize information for further consideration. It is also important that they articulate ideas and problems.

It is important for industrial engineers to apply statistical methods and perform mathematical calculations to establish manufacturing processes and production standards. They are often called upon to analyze statistical data and product specifications to establish standards and establish quality and reliability objectives of finished product. They also complete production reports and material, tool, and equipment lists. They are sometimes expected to record or oversee recording of data to insure currency of engineering drawings and documentation of production problems. Somewhat less frequently, industrial engineers are also expected to evaluate precision and precision of production and testing equipment and engineering drawings to formulate corrective action plan.

Industrial engineers sometimes are asked to draft and design layouts of equipment and workspaces to illustrate maximum efficiency using drafting tools and computers. They also have to be able to formulate and establish sequence of operations to fabricate and assemble parts or products and to promote efficient utilization and regulate and alter workflow schedules in line with established manufacturing sequences and lead times to expedite production operations. And finally, they sometimes have to schedule deliveries on the basis of production forecasts, material substitutions, storage and handling facilities, and maintenance requirements.

Like many other jobs, industrial engineers must be thorough and dependable and be able to absorb the factors involved and a problem and provide a well thought out solution.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Elgin include:

  • Electrical Engineer. Design, develop, or supervise the manufacturing and installation of electrical equipment, components, or systems for commercial, industrial, or scientific use.
  • Electronics Engineer. Research, design, and test electronic components and systems for commercial, industrial, or scientific use utilizing knowledge of electronic theory and materials properties. Design electronic circuits and components for use in fields such as telecommunications, aerospace guidance and propulsion control, acoustics, or instruments and controls.
  • Industrial Engineering Technician. Apply engineering theory and principles to problems of industrial layout or manufacturing production, usually under the direction of engineering staff. May study and record time, motion, and speed involved in performance of production, maintenance, and other worker operations for such purposes as establishing standard production rates or improving efficiency.
  • Manufacturing Engineer. Apply knowledge of materials and engineering theory and methods to design, integrate, and improve manufacturing systems or related processes. May work with commercial or industrial designers to refine product designs to increase producibility and decrease costs.
  • Mechanical Engineer. Perform engineering duties in planning and designing tools, engines, and other mechanically functioning equipment. Oversee installation, operation, and repair of such equipment as centralized heat, gas, and steam systems.
  • Mechanical Engineering Technician. Apply theory and principles of mechanical engineering to modify, develop, and test machinery and equipment under direction of engineering staff or physical scientists.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Industrial Engineer Training

Northern Illinois University - Dekalb, IL

Northern Illinois University, 1425 W. Lincoln Hwy., Dekalb, IL 60115-2825. Northern Illinois University is a large university located in Dekalb, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 24,397 students and an admission rate of 58%. Northern Illinois University has a bachelor's degree and a master's degree program in Industrial Engineering which graduated nine and twenty students respectively in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Planning and Scheduling Professional: The PSP certification is to recognize specialists who meet a demanding set of planning and scheduling criteria by a rigorous examination, experience, education and ethical qualificaion.

For more information, see the AACE International (Association for the Advancement of Cost Engineering through total cost management) website.

Certified Forensic Claims Consultant : AACE International's Certified Forensic Claims Consultant (CFCC) certification program is designed to establish credentials to recognize your professional expertise.

For more information, see the AACE International (Association for the Advancement of Cost Engineering through total cost management) website.

Quality Process Analyst: The Certified Quality Process Analyst is a paraprofessional who, in support of and under the direction of quality engineers or supervisors, analyzes and solves quality problems and is involved in quality improvement projects.

For more information, see the American Society for Quality website.

Six Sigma Greenbelt: The Six Sigma Green Belt operates in support of or under the supervision of a Six Sigma Black Belt, analyzes and solves quality problems and is involved in quality improvement projects.

For more information, see the American Society for Quality website.

Quality Inspector Certification: The Certified Quality Inspector is an inspector who, in support of and under the direction of quality engineers, supervisors, or technicians, can use the proven techniques included in the body of knowledge.

For more information, see the American Society for Quality website.

Geometric Dimensioning & Tolerancing Professional - Technologist: ASME GDTP Certification provides the means to recognize proficiency in the understanding and application of the geometric dimensioning and tolerancing (GD&T) principles expressed in the ASME Y14.

For more information, see the American Society of Mechanical Engineers International website.

Certified Energy Manager: Since its inception in 1981, the Certified Energy Manager (CEM®) credential has become widely accepted and used as a measure of professional accomplishment within the energy management field.

For more information, see the Association of Energy Engineers website.

Certified Professional Ergonomist: The BCPE was established to provide a formal process for recognizing practitioners of human factors/ergonomics.

For more information, see the Board of Certification in Professional Ergonomics website.

Certified Associate in Materials Handling: MHMS is proud to offer a professional certification program for its members.

For more information, see the Materials Handling and Management Society website.

Industrial Instrumentation: This certification program was designed for engineering technicians who are engaged in a combination of the following instrumentation system activities: design assistance, installation and maintenance of industrial measurement and control systems, and the installation and maintenance of a variety of electrical, electronic, and pneumatic instruments used within systems.

For more information, see the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies website.

Certified Enterprise Integrator: The CEI Certification recognizes a proficiency in leading cross-functional initiatives throughout a company's extended supply chain involving process, organization, and technology.

For more information, see the Society of Manufacturing Engineers website.

LICENSES

ENGINEER, PROFESSIONAL

Licensing agency: Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation
Address: 320 West Washington, Springfield, IL 62786

Phone: (217) 782-8556
Website: Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation

LOCATION INFORMATION: Elgin, Illinois

Elgin, Illinois
Elgin, Illinois photo by James Jordan

Elgin is located in Kane County, Illinois. It has a population of over 106,330, which has grown by 12.5% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Elgin, 104, is above the national average. New single-family homes in Elgin cost $156,500 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, three hundred thirty-two new homes were constructed in Elgin, down from seven hundred fifty-six the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Elgin are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is construction, metal and metal products, and administrative and support and waste management services. The average travel time to work is about 26 minutes. More than 20.5% of Elgin residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 6.0%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Elgin is 12.4%, which is greater than Illinois's average of 10.5%.

The percentage of Elgin residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 56.0%, is more than both the national and state average. Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, Seventh Day Adventist Church and Saint Thomas More Roman Catholic Church are some of the churches located in Elgin. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Lutheran Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

Elgin is home to the Fox Bluff Corporate Center and the Elgin Fire Station Number 2 as well as Wing Park and College Park. Shopping malls in the area include Wing Park Manor Shopping Center, Tyler Creek Plaza Shopping Center and Town and Country Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Elgin can choose from Elgin-Days Inn, Colonial Lodge Motel and Crowne Plaza for temporary stays in the area.