Sunday, July 21, 2024

GET EMBEDDED RIGHT AWAY!

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Though the major recruiters are big players, you should also take into account the small and medium enterprises (SMEs). In fact, these are responsible for more than 50 per cent recruitment. Naveen Kumar, CEO, Em-tech Foundation (an embedded system training institute), informs that SMEs are located in Delhi, Noida, Gurgaon, Pune, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Chennai and even smaller cities like Nagpur, Mysore and Kanpur.

What’s on offer?

Due to the huge gap between demand and supply of quality human resource, an experienced embedded system engineer may be the most sought-after professional in the electronics industry. “I believe salary is never a constraint for the right candidate. Typically, an embedded fresher starts at the same level as other engineers getting their first job in IT companies. However, embedded professionals are required to be more of solution seekers and providers. Due to these roles, they get to develop their skills faster and their rise on the corporate ladder too is faster,” opines Krishna.

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Let us check what is on offer. According to Patel, the average salary for a fresher in the embedded system field can range anywhere from Rs 10,000 to Rs 20,000 per month. Well-funded companies are prepared to offer upwards of Rs 25,000. Analysis of previous year’s industry feedback reveals figures ranging between Rs 1.2 million and Rs 2 million per annum for candidates with four to five years of experience. The compensation depends on the nature of organisation and competency level and academic background of the candidate. The ability to handle multitasking jobs may also be a defining factor.

After successful completion of the training period, an engineer’s career graph grows from the junior level towards a project leader, project champion or project manager position. In addition to gaining technical expertise, it is always advisable to explore the business processes as that can accelerate the climb to the top.

Kumar opines that in an SME one can manage a growth of 20-30 per cent up to 100 per cent after gaining an experience of one or two years, depending on whether one decides to stick to the same firm or switch jobs. He also points out the many onsite opportunities that exist in USA, Europe, Singapore and Japan. You can explore those after gaining experience of three to five years.

After successful completion of the training period, an engineer’s career graph grows from the junior level towards a project lead, project champion or project manager position.

Know the trivia

So now you want to know the basic criteria for entry, isn’t it? Diploma holders, engineering as well as science graduates and postgraduates, and even doctorates with background in electronics/electrical engineering or computer science may try their luck here. Primarily, embedded system development requires skills in electronics and computer science disciplines. The specific skills required are algorithms and programming, basic maths, computer organisation, electrical networks and digital circuits, control systems, digital signal processing (DSP) and basics of machine vision, real-time systems (including RTOS), programming of microprocessors and microcontrollers, and lab hardware.

“Depending upon the specialisation, one should focus on augmenting the skills required for embedded system development. For example, a person with electronics background should focus more on programming, software engineering and real-time system skills,” explains Chandrakant Sakharwade, general manager, embedded division, DKOP Labs, from his vast experience as a trainer in this field.

Tips from the experts…

Your next question is likely to be “How to prepare myself for this niche field?” Let us ask the experts in this field.

Ajit Clarence, head, EFY Tech Center, Bengaluru, says, “As an embedded engineer, it is very important to have knowledge of hardware and software, which sets one apart from a normal software programmer. This is one reason why embedded engineers are paid more than normal software engineers.”

From his varied experience in embedded industry and training, Clarence feels that the curriculum taught in various universities is more of theoretical in nature. Therefore he makes his students industry-ready by giving importance on hands-on training, both in hardware and software.

Clarence says that, an embedded engineer should have interest in basic electronics. He should have rigged up at least one circuit and tested it. He should be able to identify electronic components available in the market and know how to use them in his designs.

In fact, the challenge lies in understanding the electronics and other interface hardware. Understanding the fundamentals of embedded systems and knowledge of verification tools in an IDE setting are required.

Given that most electronic devices use microprocessors or microcontrollers, try to get in-depth knowledge of microcontrollers and printed circuit boards. “Programming, debugging and testing of microcontrollers as well as knowledge of printed circuit boards with respect to schematics and routing are must-to-have skills,” informs Clarence.

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