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What Is Engineering Management?

Effective engineering leaders do not simply manage engineering technology personnel. Engineering management is a set of leadership capabilities that combine technical mastery with an understanding of how cross-functional teams in a business enterprise succeed. The Henderson State University online Master of Business Administration (MBA) with a concentration in Engineering Management program provides graduates with a rare combination of skills to blend technical training with organizational and project leadership capabilities. This AACSB-accredited online MBA program builds on engineering expertise and business acumen with a focus on logistics and supply chain management, as well as quality control and improvement.

Engineering firms in manufacturing, construction, technology and production value graduates who can step in to help optimize their organization’s performance and apply sound strategic decision-making to daily operations. An MBA in Engineering Management conveys a rare, in-demand set of capabilities required of engineering leaders, including organization, communication, analytical, project management and technical skills. With these skills, graduates become the voices of engineering in the boardrooms. As a result, they are ready to work in various industries and positions, including as engineering project manager, construction management engineer, production manager and director of operations.

Employment and Average Salary Details

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, as of October 2022, the median pay for architectural and engineering managers is $152,350 per year. While the minimum educational attainment is a bachelor’s degree in engineering or architecture, many leaders in the field learn their skills through a master’s degree in business administration (MBA), engineering management (MEM or MSEM) or technology management (MSTM).

Roughly 14,000 openings are projected each year for leaders trained to plan, direct and coordinate projects in engineering and architectural firms. Civil engineering services may see the highest demand, as the country’s “aging infrastructure requires expansion and repair.” The mechanical and electrical engineering fields should also see robust employment growth. Professionals in this field commonly work in offices, construction sites, research laboratories and industrial production plants.

Why Integration of Business and Technical Skills Matters

There are four pillars to success in engineering management, and an effective leader can use proven methodologies to make effective decisions around each pillar:

  1. Business alignment. Ensure that technical teams are moving in the strategic direction of the business, focusing on funding the right projects and allocating and measuring resources accordingly.
  2. Engineering operations. Use key operational metrics to ensure the right processes are in place and teams follow them correctly.
  3. Deliverable management. Ensure that projects are completed successfully and on time without costly process bottlenecks.
  4. Performance management. Measure productivity and collaboration to optimize team performance.

Specialized MBA programs in engineering management typically develop with input from leading employers and these pillars in mind. The skills developed throughout Henderson State University’s MBA in Engineering Management curriculum include budgeting, decision-making, project management, data analytics, risk management, problem-solving, supply chain management, team training, team oversight, team development and sustainability.

Engineering Management Tools

As in most technical leadership positions, engineering managers must be proficient in cutting-edge software and technical tools. Engineering management platforms support this work by providing leaders visibility into organizational performance and operations. Through the collection and analysis of data, managers use these tools to align engineering projects with strategic business initiatives and objectives. Furthermore, these tools support different business and technical processes, expedite communication and foster digital collaboration. They also build in best practices and organizational alignment so mastering these tools becomes synonymous with providing effective leadership in engineering management’s technical and business sides.

A Curriculum That Supports Your Focus

Are you more interested in project management than quality control or economic analysis over logistics? Have you had more professional experience in some areas than in others, and would you like to further develop the skills you have acquired on the job? This field provides such diverse leadership opportunities that students can tailor their concentration and prepare for the roles that interest them most by selecting six of the following courses:

  • Logistics and Supply Chain Management II
  • Project Management
  • Economic Analysis for Managerial Decisions
  • Strategic Information Systems
  • Evidence-Based Management & Analytics
  • Marketing Management
  • Logistics and Supply Chain Management
  • Quality Control and Improvement

Students can complete the program in as few as 14 months, and many earn their specialized MBA while continuing to work. In addition, total tuition is highly affordable to meet the demands of industry professionals and their current and future employers.

Learn more about Henderson State University’s online MBA in Engineering Management program.

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