Maintenance Engineer – Job Description

Maintenance engineers can be found in a wide variety of job sectors, from manufacturing to transport to food production, but they all work to a common goal – ensuring that equipment and machinery is fully operational.

The job is a mix of proactive prevention and reactive fire-fighting. One day you might be running a service check or quality inspection and the next reacting to an emergency breakdown call.

For more senior engineers, other key tasks include arranging routine servicing and 24-hour cover rotas, checking the accuracy of instruments and recalibrating where necessary and managing the workloads of teams of fitters.

A number of companies in engineering, transport and manufacturing run apprenticeships to give school leavers a start in maintenance engineering. Five good GCSEs (grades A to C) are required in subjects such as maths, science, design and technology and English. Some firms demand more – an A level (or two) in maths or a science subject or a BTEC certificate and diploma in operations and maintenance engineering, for instance.

Traineeships for engineering graduates are also available, and there are a number of work-based NVQs out there.

Once in a job, experienced maintenance engineers can register with the Engineering Council to gain EngTech status – a good way of boosting your long-term employability.

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Other recommended resources:

Institute of Engineering and Technology
Offering chartered status within continuing professional development, membership gets you access to training and networking opportunities in addition to research and a framework of personal career support.

Engineering Council
The UK regulatory body for engineering, the EC lists the national register of chartered individuals and sets the standards for work and qualifications. Their website holds a lot of information about improving your status within the industry as well as the latest policy updates and research, helping you stay abreast of a continually evolving environment.

Society for Maintenance and Reliability Professionals
A professional society aimed at promoting the work of those involved in all areas of maintenance, they offer news, information and training opportunities.

The Skills Sector Council for the advanced manufacturing and engineering sectors, these guys put you in touch with courses, qualifications and apprenticeship schemes.

Tomorrow’s Engineers
Still in school and interested in how you can get involved? Run by EngineeringUK, Tomorrow’s Engineers offer information, inspiration and the path from your school classroom to a job in the field.

WISE: Women in Science and Engineering
Aiming to promote science and engineering to women and address the current gender balance, WISE has a wealth of information and support for any women who want to get into the industry with apprenticeships, training and networking opportunities available.

Maintenance Online
A news and research information resource, this digital magazine offers all the latest to keep yourself up to date with maintenance issues.

The Engineer
A digital magazine resource bring you all the latest in the engineering world.

Simon Thompson

Simon Thompson is CEO of Simon is a recruitment professional that pioneers the usage of video in recruitment and fully committed to helping young people find employment.