Monday, July 15, 2024

Industrial Engineering Makes Engineers Industry Ready In 2017

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With engineering in India masked by the highly in-demand Information Technology enabled Services (ITes) streams viz. Computer Science Engineering (CSE) and Information Science Engineering (ISE), it is worth understanding that there are also other branches that have found absolute relevance in changed circumstances, In this regard, experts believe that the time is right for prospective engineers to take up the study of Industrial Engineering.

At this point in time, when counselling for professional courses in underway in most Indian states, experts have also highly rated the Industrial Engineering branch. A major reason for this changing trend is cited to be the potential impact that the latest smart technology buzzword, Industry 4.0, is expected to have on the Indian industrial scheme of things. Also, aspects such as industry and factory automation are also viewed as factors driving demand for industrial engineers.

Scope for industrial engineering is seemingly evergreen

“First of all, understand that the demand for industrial engineers will not die down. With rapid evolutions in Indian industrial scenario, demand will only go north,” states Dr Radhakrishnan HK who is a leading career counsellor in Bengaluru with over twenty years of experience in guiding young engineers towards right career paths.

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Dr Radhakrishnan also adds that, in 2017, industrial engineering has converted into a cross-functional area; which means that engineers get to flex their creative muscles in multiple domains apart from traditional manufacturing. This means that jobs are naturally more for industrial engineers in India.

The Indian government’s push for foreign direct investment (FDI) and Make in India have also opened up avenues for industrial engineering.

“There has been a sudden spike in the number of students enrolling to study industrial engineering and management, and industrial production overall,” stated Dr M N Kumar Naik who is principal of a well-known engineering college in Bengaluru.

Dr Kumar Naik also brings out the fact that the student strength for industrial production is now on par with that of CSE branch. This trend has reportedly come to light over the last three years.

The number games

With increased avenues, experts believe that industrial engineering (and related engineering streams) have the number advantage because of the cross-functional aspect associated with the branch.

Major sectors that aggressively look out for industrial engineers are manufacturing (the traditional base), textiles, logistics, Research and Development (R&D), essential services, Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG), Aviation, and Banking.

“Industrial engineers are typically essential elements of any firm that is into essential services and production. Society today is in a position where industry is the driving force. Therefore, the time is now apt for students to take up industrial engineering as a specialisation,” states Albert Lewis who is a Mangalore-based engineering professor.

Engineering solutions for society is at its peak

With industrial engineers working on a variety of real-world projects to be deployed in the physical domain, adding creativity and smartness to engineer solutions almost becomes a norm. This means that industrial engineers have a lot of scope to develop smart models to creatively address issue plaguing society.

“As industrial engineers normally work on aspects like techniques, resource pooling & management, managing operations, and more; there is every opportunity to find creative work-arounds,” adds Dr Radhakrishnan.

“With almost an entire organisation being dependant on industrial engineers, the scope for development of intuitive models only increases so does the working of a firm,” advises Rajesh Prasad K who is a Bengaluru-based independent mechanical engineer who consults for governmental agencies on various projects.

Rajesh Prasad also believes that good industrial models are directly connected with positive societal impact. Therefore, students with a penchant to study industrial engineering can take note of these aspects now.

The overflow of data is the USP for Industrial Engineers

From a technology viewpoint, experts believe that industrial engineers have an edge with the sheer amount of data generated within an organisation (or industry). By tapping into the enormous data pool, it should not be difficult to develop technology-driven industrial solutions on par with the developed economies.

“On par with the latest trend of developing data-driven smart solutions, industrial engineers only tend to gain as their skillsets and experience goes upbeat in such a system,” believes Sharath MN who is a senior industrial engineer working with Aditya Birla in Bengaluru.

Higher studies in industrial engineering and production are seemingly a boon

Apart from career scope and progression, experts also quote an unconventional reason which is the comparatively lucrative career that industrial engineering and production streams offer students.

“I would recommend students to take up industrial engineering at the graduate level, and as Master’s specialisation due to the fact that the latter makes it relatively easier to fetch placements and land jobs. Even advanced research in the domain is slowly becoming an in-thing now,” states  Uma HM who is currently pursuing M.Tech in GITAM University at Vishakhapatnam.

Uma states that she has been offered placements by companies that have offered salary packages in the range of ₹6 – ₹8 lakhs per annum. The post Master’s degree career is also looked at upon highly by industry experts.

Skillsets required to work as Industrial Engineers, job prospects, and more

Undoubtedly, a bachelor’s in engineering degree is a fundamental requirement for engineers to take up work as industrial technologists and industrial technology evangelists. Other technical skillsets include AutoCAD, Autodesk, lean manufacturing, automation, development testing, test engineering, Oil & Gas schematics, and other skillsets that vary based on the firm.

Also, since industrial engineering involves development of heuristic models for industries (and society), knowledge of technology advancements such as the Internet of Things (IoT), Machine Learning (ML), Artificial Intelligence (AI), and Deep Learning ideally suit engineers.

As far as work description is concerned, industrial engineers spend their time doing a lot of quality analysis, quality control, machine designing, machine location design, supply chain management, remote industrial management, engineering specifications, monitoring process flows, developing & checking production schedules, and more essential tasks.

Industrial engineers are also involved with almost all levels of industrial machines management, and MIS monitoring.

Designations for fresh engineers include industrial engineers, industrial trainee, production trainee; designations generally vary based on job roles. Pay packages for freshers typically start from ₹2-₹3 lakhs per annum; large companies also generally tend to offer monetary increments irrespective of appraisal cycles, based on outstanding performance (and achievement).

“Industrial engineering offers industry level exposure, which is a value addition in comparison to ITes engineering streams. This should be harnessed effectively by students,” signs-off Albert Lewis.

Therefore, prospective engineers can put on their thinking caps and look at developing societal solutions from the industrial engineering perspective. Experts feel that the effort and time spent are totally worth at the end of the day.

Need to study industrial engineering, in a nutshell

Industrial Engineering offers enhanced scope and cross-domain work roles
Industrial Engineering is multidisciplinary
Master’s programs in Industrial Engineering promise fulfilling careers
Pay packages offered are generally considered lucrative
Manufacturing of efficient solutions driven by technology comes to the forefront

Experts Consulted

Dr Radhakrishnan HK Bengaluru-based expert career counsellor with twenty years of experience
Dr M N Kumar Naik Principal of a well-known engineering college in Bengaluru.
Albert Lewis Engineering profesor who teaches Electronics and Communication ENgineering to students in Mangaluru
Rajesh Prasad K Bengaluru-based independent mechanical engineer who consults for governmental agencies on various projects.
Sharath MN senior industrial engineer working with Aditya Birla in Bengaluru
Uma HM M.Tech student at Gitam University in Vishakhapatnam

Feel interested! Check out the career guidance for engineers.

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