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Electronics & Test

Salary Survey: 2013 Delivers Bigger Paychecks

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Ralphy Boy
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Platinum
Re: Isolated Employer
Ralphy Boy   8/14/2013 4:30:11 PM
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Tool Maker you really said a mouthful...

It sounds like our paths are somewhat similar. Straight out of HS mine started in a small shop making minimum plus a little bit. I should'a went to college but I didn't like the first 12 years enough to sign up for more of the same.

Lots of tweaking my skill-set along the way and after 40 years in manufacturing I now supervise 2nd shift production in an aerospace lithium battery company, I'm still the go to guy for the tough CNC work but that is not too often anymore, I have a decent working knowledge of electronics, can debug and repair our machinery (much of it is custom built w/robots)... and I even have time to keep my crew busy and usually fairly happy.

One of my main duties is designing (which I enjoy immensely... 2 words SolidWorks) and then building test equipment. I do most all the design/fabrication of our artillery simulation fixtures. They see thousands of Gs and go from 0 to 10,000 RPM in a heartbeat. They must be reusable and provide a clean electronic connection to the test equipment.

The last time someone else designed/made one of these it turned into small pieces on the first shot. Some of mine are well beyond 100 shots, with minimal maintenance.

So yeah, we do engineering work as took makers, especially as we get more experience... I still wish I had liked school enough to get a degree way back when.

bobjengr
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Platinum
SALARY SURVEY
bobjengr   8/14/2013 7:25:50 PM
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Rogue Moon, I agree with your comments completely.  At the "tinder" age of 71, it's amazing how many "head-hunter" calls I get every month.  I own my consulting company and when I tell them that they still are interested.   If not full-time employment then contract jobs.  The absence of qualified engineering talent has already caught up with us.  Many jobs go hunting simply because no one is there to work them.  Engineering management loads up employees simple due to lack of human resources.  Quite often, compensation for those added hours is not there. I do think one reason for generous bonus plans is due to management recognizing "blue-collar" engineers DO work considerable hours and rewards are necessary to keep good employees.   I really don't see this trend abating in the near future.     

Tool_maker
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Platinum
Re: Isolated Employer
Tool_maker   8/15/2013 6:41:35 AM
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  We are today's exceptions to what was once the rule. When I got into the tool & die industry (1964), virtually all the designers were extoolmakers. Now it is only relics like us.

  I did go to college when I got out of the service and earned a degree in English. I intended to be a technical writer and tuition re-embursement was one way to make Uncle Sam pay me back the wages I lost when I got drafted. Imagine my surprise when I found that a journeyman tool maker made way more money than a beginning tech writer. Instead I just became a curiosity in any shop where I worked. 27 years later I returned to get Teacher Certification and taught evenings for 6 years at a small, expensive boy's boarding school. It was a great experience but I had to quit when things at my day job changed. I hope to return as a teacher when I retire from my day job.

  Ralphy Boy, I would encourage you and anyone else who has been out of school for a long time to enroll in a couple classes at any local school. Not online classes, but real face-face classroom experience. You may find it a real eyeopener as to how much you know and can apply from real life experiences and how much just plain rubbish is being spoonfed to student's heads full of mush, by teachers that have never moved outside a class room. Even in tech schools.

Ralphy Boy
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Isolated Employer
Ralphy Boy   8/16/2013 12:32:13 AM
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Old Relics... ha!

Thanks for the thought about taking some college classes. I've actually done that; face to face and online, plus some electronics tech seminars off campus. I'm a try all the above guy.

I got half way through a CIM degree, but the college has since removed most of the shop equipment and converted the space into a book store... Way more money in that I guess.

You're right in that it was an eye-opener. It sure is funny when the old guy in the room is the one messing up the curve, which I've since heard is not all that unusual. I even spiked the ball a couple times in English class... lol

I've told many people who have worked for me the same thing; to take some classes and that they may be pleasantly surprised.

Ann R. Thryft
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Blogger
Thanks for the thorough report
Ann R. Thryft   8/19/2013 6:29:25 PM
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Thanks for this thorough report on the survey, Lauren. This salary info is great new for the profession and for our readers. Interesting that controls have risen faster/higher than electronics.

Charles Murray
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Blogger
Re: appreciated more because companies have to
Charles Murray   8/26/2013 7:41:03 PM
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"Engineering pays well because its a discipline that requires a lot from its students either in raw talent or just the tenacity to finish.  It's a good profession, but WAY undervalued."

I wouldn't argue your point for a minute, RogueMoon. I would also add that it's not just undervalued, but widely misunderstood. Teachers in most of our high schools can tell you what doctors and lawyers and even accountants do, but most have no clue to what an engineer does.

taimoortariq
User Rank
Gold
Re: appreciated more because companies have to
taimoortariq   8/28/2013 12:09:54 AM
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I totally agree with that, Its mainly because their is no defined work for engineers like other occupations such as doctors or lawyers. A doctor will always have to work on humans, nothing is going to change about it. Engineers have to cope up with the development and advancment of technologies and also because of such a diverse nature of the jobs people are generally confused about our job descriptions.

eric.frohn
User Rank
Silver
Salary Survey
eric.frohn   9/3/2013 9:52:10 AM
With respect, most responses and comments are missing the true value of such reports and this one is lacking.

What is the true net result of the salaries surveyed relative to the net value or buying power of the dollar.

Nothing relative to the continued devaluation of our fiat currency has been taken into consideration.

Further, nothing is included to show how QE (quantitative easing) has impacted salaries.  I would expect to see salaries coming up, but the truth/fact of the matter its a function of the devaluation of our currency which is no longer currency but fiat money.

 

eric.frohn
User Rank
Silver
Re: appreciated more because companies have to
eric.frohn   9/3/2013 10:48:06 AM
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Physicians have to adapt to changes in treatment and technology as well as the continuous cuts in reimbursements by insurance companies.

The advancements of technology, in imaging, for example, have made quantum leaps as well as how those images are read and interpreted. Granted, all created by an engineer but the user must also make changes to utilize the new techology.

Debera Harward
User Rank
Silver
Re: Appreciated
Debera Harward   9/3/2013 5:06:31 PM
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Thats really great that these days engineers are becomming recognized as well because once there was a time when engineers were not that much paid and the moral of students who wanted to become engineers was comming down just because of the pay scale . But with these figures our young students can easily get motivated and can achieve what they want in lifes by becomming engineer .

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