Systems EngineerJob Description, Salary, Career Path, and Trends
Systems engineers design and implement software for a variety of information and technological applications. They combine an understanding of both engineering and management to increase productivity in the workplace. Systems engineers apply engineering and computer science principles to not just the creation of software but also testing procedures for internal systems.
Systems engineers make sure that all IT services are appropriately supported and upgraded. Their role includes backups, imaging, testing, evaluating, and preventing viruses that could develop within the software. Systems engineers are responsible for ensuring that systems and software run smoothly and efficiently.
Sample job description
Systems engineers needed urgently to begin work at [Your Company Name]. The ideal candidate will have previous experience in systems engineering as well as the correct qualifications, degrees, and certificates for this position. The ideal candidate’s daily tasks will include implementing new systems and updating old systems to ensure they work properly, training other engineers throughout the company, and troubleshooting any systems that may not be working properly. It will be your aim to improve the operating efficiency of our company as much as possible through the systems you implement. Being data-minded is a large benefit for any systems engineer, as well as having a good ability to communicate and instruct. If this sounds of interest, please apply! We are urgently looking for a new systems engineer and would love to have you on our team.
Typical duties and responsibilities
Manage and monitor all installed systems and infrastructure according to company guidelines
Assist in testing and evaluating application software and system management tools
Write and maintain custom scripts to reduce the need for human intervention
Test software development methodology
Lead ongoing maintenance, support, and enhancements in existing systems and platforms
Collaborate cross-functionally with data scientists, business users, project managers, and other engineers to achieve software solutions
Recommend software and process improvements where necessary
Work alongside other engineers on the team to elevate technology and follow best practices
Education and experience
This position requires a bachelor’s degree in computer science, information technology, applied mathematics, or a related field. Many employers prefer candidates who have a master’s or doctorate and certification from INCOSE, the International Council on Systems Engineering.
Required skills and qualifications
Experience creating automated scripts
Understanding of best practices for systems security measures
Excellent problem-solving and analytical abilities
Ability to lead a development team
Several years of hands-on software development experience
Experience with modern programming languages including Python and Java
Expertise in written and verbal communication skills
Keen attention to detail
Understanding of and experience with system design, including writing IC design specifications, developing algorithms, and creating system reference models
Knowledge in structured and/or object oriented programming (C, C++) and signal processing tools (Matlab)
Average salary and compensation
The average salary for a systems engineer is $123,400 in the United States. Position salary will vary based on experience, education, company size, industry, and market.
Los Angeles, California
Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota
New York City, New York
Typical work environment
A systems engineer is required to be skilled in both engineering and systems management. Their daily tasks can include mentoring other engineers within the company, assisting engineers with tasks, creating schedules and implementing the correct systems, providing goals for a project, and much more. Because of the extreme qualifications a systems engineer needs to have, a systems engineer should aim to be an expert in both fields of qualifications that are required. As a systems engineer, it will be your job to understand both engineering and management, which will include working in various departments and developing systems for a company. Systems engineers attempt to improve productivity in the workplace by ensuring that systems are operating properly.
The typical work hours for a systems engineer are from 9 AM to 5 PM, Monday through Friday, in an office setting.
As a systems engineer, you can benefit from becoming certified in the field or relevant fields. Some of the ideal certifications of a systems engineer may vary depending on the specific field, but common certificates include:
Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE). A Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer will benefit from being certified by one of the most widely recognized certification companies for systems, security, and systems engineering. This certification ensures a basic and advanced level of competency in systems engineering and can be immensely beneficial to any systems engineer looking to further their career. Because it is widely recognized, this certificate can prove to be beneficial when acquiring a job as well.
CompTIA A+. The CompTIA certification is an industry standard for all sorts of computer technicians and system managers. Because of this, acquiring this certification can be beneficial for systems engineers to demonstrate their competency in the computer and systems fields. This certification is offered with the ability to take the test online, so it is broadly available to any engineer looking to acquire the correct certifications for their position.
The path to becoming a systems engineer starts with earning a bachelor’s degree in computer science, information technology, applied mathematics, or a related field. Many employers prefer candidates who have a master’s or doctorate, have a strong background in computer programming, and certification from INCOSE, the International Council on Systems Engineering.
US, Bureau of Labor Statistics’ job outlook
SOC Code: 15-1299.08
Projected Employment in 2030
Projected 2020-2030 Percentage Shift
Projected 2020-2030 Numeric Shift
A trend in the systems engineering field in the coming years is the increased use of progressive web apps (PWAs). They’re a kind of website that functions like a mobile app but runs in a web browser. Companies are using them to save money because they eliminate the need for a mobile app or a mobile version of their websites. Instead, PWAs give companies the same benefits as a mobile app and offer faster load times and better functionality for customers.
Increased demand for the Internet of Things (IoT) is another trend for systems engineers to watch in the coming years. Devices that can be connected to the internet, from smart appliances to wearable technology, are becoming increasingly popular. Many software companies are expected to begin specializing in programming for the IoT sector, so applicants who are knowledgeable about smart technology software will be more in demand.
Sample interview questions
As a systems engineer, what would you say the ideal skills are for this position?
How would you go about determining what aspects of a system need to be improved and how you should improve them?
If you were asked to explain part of a system by an employee, how would you go about explaining it in a clear and concise manner?
Do you get along well with teammates?
What is the largest development team that you’ve managed, and how did you successfully manage the team?
What do you consider when updating infrastructure and systems?
We match top professionals with great employers across the country. Your next career move or star employee is just around the corner. Review our career content and advice, browse our latest job openings, or email us your resume. We look forward to connecting with you soon!