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Engineering Resume Samples - A Step by Step Guide for 2021

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Volen Vulkov Avatar
Volen Vulkov
8 minute read
Updated on 2021-04-29

Elon Musk once said that a true expert can solve a problem on several levels.

He was talking about your engineering resume.

To land you a dream engineering job, your resume has to pass several robotic checks, get approved by non-technical and technical recruiters, and, lastly, impress your department lead.

If you are tired of taking chances every time you send your engineering resume, then this guide is for you.

In this guide, you’ll learn:

  • How to land more engineering interviews with your engineering resume
  • What do recruiters want to see in your engineering resume the most
  • Expert resume tips for specific engineering jobs and industries
  • How to properly structure your resume to emphasize your winning qualities
  • 12 engineering resume examples and why they work
I don’t spend my time pontificating about high-concept things; I spend my time solving engineering and manufacturing problems.

How to Write an Engineering Resume That Gets Interviews

  • Show complete project experience.

If you want to get a dream engineering job, listing your projects and inserting buzzwords is not enough. Explain how your role was critical to these projects. Be specific about your results.

Bad example: Reviewed company SOPs

Good example: Reviewed company SOPs to reduce non-productive time by 15% by conducting senior personnel surveys and troubleshooting operational glitches.

  • Show your ability to work within a modern engineering environment

The modern engineering environment is about multidisciplinary distributed teams, open-source tools, and agile frameworks. Show recruiters that you don’t just bear within it. You prosper.  

Bad example: Led a team of engineers to develop a new distillation process.

Goog example: Led a cross-functional team of engineers, analysts, and contractors to design and implement a new distillation system that is currently operational on 80% of facilities with 58% improved cost efficiency.

  • Guide recruiter’s attention where you want it to be with a smart resume format.

Use bold text to emphasize your results in a sentence. Usecustom sections and headers to improve the scannability of your resume. Use a customresume layout to guide the recruiter’s attention.

Make sure your resume can beeasily printed and exported in PDF format so that recruiters can study it even during their lunch break.

Scroll back to the header for a resume example that combines the most effective resume formatting practices to get an engineering interview more often.

Engineering Resume Format: Which One Should You Choose

No single engineering resume template or format will suit every scenario. But keep in mind the following tips:

  • Each engineer is different. Mechanical engineering and civil engineering are two totally different disciplines, so one design cannot fit both. We’ll share more advice in the later sections.
  • Don’t get too creative. You want to find that perfect balance of professionalism and uniqueness without being boring or average.
  • Be sure that your engineering degree is featured at the top of your engineering resume template - relevant education is extremely important in this field.
  • Your engineering skills, projects, and achievements should be visible. Don’t just write them down, focus on getting the numbers behind them.
  • Leave enough room for a solid resume summary.  Most engineers don’t focus on writing a summary, so making yours a little longer can help you really stand out.
PRO TIPIf you feel that you don’t have the right amount of engineering experience, then you can still consider using acreative layout. Even though your experience section might be short, a unique engineering resume format might help you get noticed and chosen for an interview.

Engineering Resume Header: When Details Matter

Your engineering resume header is the first thing a recruiter or HR department will see on your resume.

Remember they're looking at hundreds of engineering resumes a day, so you need to be sure you’re conveying all the right details, especially at a quick glance.

So let’s make sure you’ve got it in good shape!

An engineering resume header should have:

  • Your name - include next to it if you have the following certificates - B.Eng, M.Eng, etc. This way the HRs can see in the first seconds that you’re qualified.
  • Your engineering resume title - What kind of engineer are you? How many years have you been at it? Do you have a masters? Here’s where you highlight that.
  • Phone number and email address - make sure your voicemail is professional sounding and that your email address is easy to type.
  • Your linkedin profile - you might have several social media accounts but LinkedIn is likely the only one you want to put on your engineering resume.
Michael Harden B.Eng
Chemical engineer with 4+ years of experience at BASF


Chris Spencer

Put yourself in the shoes of the person reading your resume and consider the message your header is giving

PRO TIPSome companies, states, and countries have policies about identifying information like photos on your resume. Be sure to check all the relevant rules before submitting yours. If you’re in doubt, you can always try contacting the company’s HR department to ask for their policy.

Engineering Resume Summary: Do You Need It?

In short, yes.

This is one of the most underrated and impactful sections an engineering resume can have. It shows that you can write effectively (by including plenty of valuable information in a short format), and gives the reader a quick and valuable snapshot of who you are.

Let’s see how you should be creating and using a resume objective and summary.

4 great tips on writing your engineering resume objective

  1. First, You need to make sure the person reading your resume knows who you are and what you want as efficiently as possible.
  2. Include just a short personal description in your resume header. This could be something like “An electrical engineering graduate looking for an internship” or “A senior civil engineer looking to manage larger projects”. This gets the basics across very efficiently.
  3. Add a short paragraph (emphasis on short) which includes the basic information the person reading your resume needs about who you are and what your goals are
  4. Finally, tell them something personal from your experience - make it sound that it’s not copy pasted from the thousands of engineering resume examples around the web

So now that you have them looking at your resume, what they read in your resume objective is going to either make them read on or put your resume in the “no” pile.

This is why the resume objective or summary is so important.

An experienced engineer who works well in a team..

The problem? It doesn’t tell the reader anything very useful. It’s also not specific to the position, which makes it read as generic.

Project Engineer who is well versed in all construction methodologies, procedures, and disciplines with 6+ years experience with direct administrative support for all phases of commercial and public works construction.

Or, for an entry level engineering resume:

Recent B.Eng recipient with internship experience at Sacramento Public Works, looking for a position with a focus on municipal or state construction.

In both “right” examples the reader knows who you are, what you’ve done and what your career is focused on.

If you’d also like to add more context on your engineering background or objective, this can be included in a cover letter. If you won’t be using a cover letter and still want to add more detail you can include a summary.

An engineering resume objective should

  • Be specific
  • Express your short and long-term career goals
  • Say something about who you are and what you’re good at
  • Be addressed to the specific job you’re applying for

For more tips on crafting an attention-grabbing resume summary, check out our guideResume Summary: How-To Guide (30+ Examples You Need To See)

Engineering Resume Experience Section: The Most Effective Approach

Let’s say you’re up against one other person for a job.

You’ve got the better experience, but they know how to present it better than you do.

Guess who’s getting hired?

Probably not you.

That’s because, for better or worse, the way you present your engineering experience is tremendously important.

Have a look at these examples to see what we mean.

Industrial EngineerASELSAN
02/2010 - 11/2015
New York, NY
Created and developed 2D/3D preliminary drawings and designs setting the framework for manufacturing projects,
Provided expert judgment and analysis for the design, development, and implementation of technical products and systems.
Recommended key alterations to the development and design to improve the quality of products and procedures
Responsible for designing new products using computer-aided design software applications such as AutoCAD, Pro/ENGINEER, Solid Works, Adobe Illustrator/Photoshop.

By using action words such as created, provided and recommended you give the impression that you were involved in your past work. This is the kind of engineer companies are looking for.

Industrial EngineerASELSAN
02/2010 - 11/2015
New York, NY
Adhered to product design and manufacturing standards
Worked as a part of $12 million of CAPEX projects
Part of a team consisting of 2 engineers and 3 workmen for production modelling, drafting and execution

Notice how lifeless and generic that second example is? Hiring managers certainly will notice.

Beyond telling them what type of work you did, it gives them no real sense of whether you were successful or what you accomplished.

You could have done a terrible job or an excellent job and this experience section could look identical.

So, if someone reads that section, they feel like you just wasted their time making them read something that gave them almost no new information.

PRO TIPThe person reading your resume will be busy, so make sure you write your engineering resume in a way that is not only informative but interesting too!

Engineering Resume Education: What to Include?

How many engineers do you know who didn’t go to school?

So while the answer to that question is obvious, what isn’t obvious is how important it is to make your education on an engineering resume stand out.

Every engineer that is applying for your job has a degree or certification in engineering.

So you need to make your education stand out, especially if you’re looking for an entry level engineering position with no experience.

While senior engineers with years of experience shouldn’t devote as much space to their education (just a listing of where you went, your degrees, etc. should be sufficient), younger engineers need this section to make an impression.

Here’s what you can add to your education section:

  • Relevant courses (here you can mention projects, skills acquired, lessons learned, etc.)
  • Awards
  • Your GPA (if you think it’s relevant)
  • All of the regular information mentioned above

Here’s an example of a senior engineer’s engineering education on a resume:

Masters of Mechanical EngineeringUniversity of Illinois

This person graduated 10 years ago, so it’s not necessary to include many details about their education.

Here how to put education on an entry level engineering resume with no experience:

Masters of Mechanical EngineeringUniversity of Illinois
Successfully completed studies in a broad spectrum of engineering including civil, mechanical and industrial engineering
Two summer internships at Chicago Public Works assisting a 10 person team on municipal construction projects
Made the Dean’s List for 6/8 semesters with a final GPA of 3.87
Served as Vice President and Secretary of the Engineers of Tomorrow undergraduate organization

You can see how your years at school created a wealth of experience that is going to be valuable and interesting to your potential employers.

So don’t take for granted how including engineering education on a resume matters.

It could be the reason your engineering resume gets picked for the job!

Engineering Resume Skills: How to Forge The Winning Combination

For most engineering resumes you will want to focus on technical skills for engineers.

Below we’re going to break down the difference between technical and soft skills on engineering resumes.

How to include technical skills on an engineering resume

SolidworksMathcadUnigraphicsAutodeskANSYSNastranMATLABVisual BasicPython

Displaying engineering skills this way is excellent for technical skills like software and programming languages.

This kind of a skills section is important because many ATS (Applicant Tracking Systems) will screen your resume for certain keywords before a human ever sees it). A simple list of relevant technical skills required in the job description does the job perfectly.

The technical skills for an engineering resume

  • Mathcad
  • Solidworks
  • Unigraphics
  • Autodesk
  • Nastran
  • Visual Basic
  • Python
  • Catia
  • ZW3D
  • MechDesigner
  • PTC Creo
  • BricsCAD
  • Solid Edge
  • Rhino
  • SolidFace
  • Geomagic Design
  • TurboCAD
  • COMSOL Multiphysics
  • CircuitLab
  • IronCAD
  • Eagle PCB

How to include soft skills on an engineering resume

Too many engineers think soft skills just aren’t important in their field.

But that’s just plain wrong.

In fact, soft skills are often what can distinguish an engineer, especially for someone with no formal work experience.

Below, you can see an example of valuable engineering soft skills and examples to show that you actually possess them.

Creative problem solving
Spent a summer volunteering to build houses in Honduras, during which time I had to constantly improvise with the tools and building materials that were available to solve a variety of engineering problems.
Verbal and written communication skills
Wrote the Engineering for Non-Engineers column in my university paper and gave presentations about engineering to general audiences as a representative of our department.