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What skills do you need to succeed as an engineer?

Think you have the skills and qualities of an engineer? Check out our range of engineering roles and apply today.

The pursuit of knowledge is one of the top traits of a successful engineer.

Engineering is a fast-growing and increasingly exciting field to work in, but as the industry develops, it’s clear that having a relevant degree isn’t enough. Although there are a wide range of engineering careers available, you’ll need a highly sought-after skillset to really reach your potential.

To succeed in an engineering role, you will need the following skills:

  • People skills
  • Enterprise
  • Digital
  • Creative thinking
  • A desire to learn
  • Problem solving
  • Sustainability

Alongside core technical knowledge, developing the soft skills required for engineering is critical to success. So, why are these skills so important? Here's why.

People skills

It's highly likely that you'll be working with a range of different teams throughout your career, so working well with others is crucial to achieve the very best outcome for the projects that you'll be working on. If you want to thrive in the world of engineering, you’ll need to make use of these skills so you can work easily with a range of people from different backgrounds and cultures.


Enterprise skills are found throughout a number of different areas, such as communication, teamwork, innovation, leadership and resilience. For instance, it’s not enough to work with teams of engineers, you need to know how to communicate effectively within those teams. Having these enterprise skills can do wonders in setting you apart from other people in your field.


Engineering is currently in the middle of a huge digital revolution. Therefore, strong digital skills such as a knowledge of AI are required to make the changes that are needed for the future. Engineers who can embrace technology and understand data will play an important part in many of today’s industrial strategies which welcome working across multiple disciplines.

Creative thinking

Thinking creatively should be a key focus for any engineer. Having the ability to see ideas in a different way, or coming up with innovative solutions to challenging problems, is a hugely desirable skill. Engineers with imagination, foresight and “out of the box” thinking are best suited to take on some of the most in-demand roles within the industry.

A desire to learn

The pursuit of knowledge is one of the top traits of an engineer. This is critical so that you never stop learning throughout your professional career. By continuing to learn, you’ll be growing your expertise and understanding of important topics which will help you to make more impactful changes at work.

Problem solving

Thinking in an analytical way is an essential skill needed for engineering. You may come up against several issues, barriers and challenges in your career – so you need to be motivated in coming up with a solution rather than creating even more of a problem for yourself. You must be able to identify and work out complex problems with an inquisitive mind.


Engineers all have a role to play in sustainable development. This means using your knowledge to help tackle some of the greatest challenges in the world while also being mindful of your own actions and how they can affect the environment and the society you live in. Much of the work you do will enable people to have a better quality of life, but this shouldn’t be at the expense of future generations.

Think you have the skills and qualities of an engineer? Check out our range of engineering roles here.

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