What is the Lure of Industrial Engineering?
Industrial Engineering focuses on the optimization of systems (an operation that creates products). It is hard to put a specific description on what an Industrial Engineer does. Industrial Engineers are educated on the many areas of engineering but if you wanted to sum up the job description in two words it would be: problem solvers. No matter the problem Industrial Engineers are there to find a reasonable solution that will help the company. This may not be the newest field of study. People have been attempting to improve productivity in systems for years, but the areas that Industrial Engineers are growing. .
The word Industrial Engineering is quite misleading, making people believe that this Engineering is based solely on industry, manufacturing, and factories. It is true that Industrial Engineers work on making factories more efficient, but the job description is much larger than that alone:
“Industrial engineers are prime sources of management talent. They learn to make decisions concerning the best use of people, material, equipment, and energy in achieving an organization’s aims. To accomplish best use of resources, the industrial engineer systematically collects, analyzes, and arranges factual information in such a way as to fulfill management’s needs.”
Industrial Engineers are known for great management; they always try to get the best out of the hand they were dealt. The difference between Industrial Engineers and normal managers is that Industrial Engineers attempt to solve problems through an Engineers mindset. They tend to rely on their study of mathematics and use quantitative data to try and find a solution.
While people joke about the social lives of engineers, Industrial Engineers need to have social skills. In order for Industrial Engineers to be able to make improvements there must be cooperation between multiple people. I am not saying they are social butterflies, but I would like to think that they at least can communicate between each other.
Industrial Engineering is unique because Industrial Engineers focus on people just as much as machines.You normally do not find an Industrial Engineer working solely in the lab, you can find Industrial Engineers working in businesses helping out. Industrial Engineers are vital because they not only help industries improve, but they also help people become more efficient
Industrial Engineers are hired by industries, corporations, and the government. Many companies use Industrial Engineers to help solve their problems (malfunctions in the way a company creates a good) or help optimize the company (simplify the operation of creating the product). The truth is almost everybody is affected by the results of Industrial Engineers. You can find the works of an Industrial Engineer at a fast food restaurant. While you’re waiting in line, see that an Industrial Engineer sat down and purposely advised the restaurant to set up the line a certain way. The line they created was made to get the customer served the fastest. Also, for the customer to feel like they have been in line for less time than they actually have. This focus on lines seems trivial, but in amusement parks lines are part of the experience.
Industrial Engineers are not like other Engineers that create, build, and discover ideas, buildings, prosthetics, and robots. Industrial Engineers are not inventors but innovators. Inventions are always great but an Industrial Engineer helps improve the invention/idea and makes it more useful to the general public.Some critics believe that Industrial Engineers just steal the ideas of others and add one or two “new” features. This is not Industrial Engineering. Industrial Engineers take processes that include people, machines, energy, and materials and make the process more efficient and cost effective.
The lure of Industrial Engineering is the chance to help enhance processes not only involving manufacturing but also people!