Happy engineers week to all of my engineer readers! (Actually, it’s almost the end of engineers week. Sorry for the late notice–hopefully you can still find time to celebrate). Today is Introduce a Girl to Engineering (and OR??) Day. If you brought your daughter to work today, kudos!
Industrial engineers determine the most effective ways to use people,machines, materials, information, and energy to make a product or to provide a service. Sometimes they are called “efficiency experts.”
Do you think of yourself as super organized? Do you think you’re good at understanding the big picture and figuring out how things could work better? If so, you might make a great industrial engineer. Your job would involve organizing people, places, equipment, and information, ensuring that complex and large-scale systems operate safely and efficiently.
For example, you might keep a hospital operating room running like clockwork. You might make sure an assembly line runs smoothly both for people and machines. Or you might be involved in adding a little extra fun and convenience to people’s lives by figuring out ways of making amusement park lines shorter, or by seeing to it that a big clothing chain always has every size of jeans in stock.
Although most industrial engineers work in manufacturing industries, they may also work in consulting services, healthcare, and communications.
Kinda sounds like operations research. Too bad they didn’t mention OR by name. Mike Trick wrote about the importance of the OR brand recently. If you are an engineer and an operations researcher, how do you describe yourself?