A career in engineering can be incredibly rewarding, and not just financially. However, getting your foot on the first step of the ladder can be difficult. But with the right combination of planning, research and action, you can get the job you need to get you started in this exciting industry. There are engineering firms looking for the right candidate, right now, that can help them grow and succeed.

Here is our quick guide on four tips that can help you get ahead as you prepare for a career in engineering.

Begin Your Preparation Early

If you are hoping to leave university and find a job almost right away, then you need to start preparing for your career early. You will need a strong result academically if you are going to pique the interest of the top engineering firms, but you will also need a mix of proven work experience and extra-curricular activities to be a well-rounded candidate.

Some people write a ‘future resume’ in their first year of university, to give them a target to aim for and an idea of the things they would like to be able to say about themselves when they do graduate. 

Make Sure You Get Some Practical Experience

The biggest thing you can do to improve your chances of getting a job is by getting some practical work experience, preferably with an engineering firm.

Some university degrees involve a year-long work placement, and these types of degrees can often impress prospective employers, showing you have a long-term work experience in the industry. Many of these also include projects that you can point to that demonstrate your ability to plan and execute engineering tasks.

Work Hard at University

If you finish university with a low-grade degree, your chances of finding a good job in engineering and having a successful career are greatly diminished.

An engineering degree can be a very demanding subject to study, and involves a knowledge of many other subjects such as math and physics. Make sure you do everything you can to excel in your studies. Many students can find their engineering degree difficult, but luckily there are quality study guides available to help you understand the more challenging concepts.

Make sure you study hard at university, and look for opportunities there to strengthen your resume such as research studies and relevant extracurricular clubs that you can join.

Aim High, But Take Lots of Shots

Some of the world’s biggest and most prestigious engineering firms operate in the United States of America. On the West coast, Boeing sits atop a huge amount of aerospace engineering companies, with SpaceX also pushing the engineering envelope as far as it will go from their base in California. There are also huge building firms on the East coast that are designing the infrastructure of 21st century America, today.

If you graduate from a university with a high-level degree in engineering, these are the companies you should target; but don’t stop there. There are hundreds of small and medium sized engineering firms that handle massive projects or are a part of a chain of companies that contribute to a huge engineering task, like building and designing spacecraft. 

You should apply for these companies, and apply often. Don’t be disheartened if you don’t hear back; the trick to getting a good engineering job is to aim high, and aim often.

Anyone applying for any type of job needs to remember to never give up, and that with the right approach, you can get your foot in a door and turn an interview opportunity into a career.