8 Perks to Working for an Engineering Firm (when you're not an engineer!)

Image of cracked dirt with the name 'Groundwork' on it.
on 7 May 2020
  • engineering
  • perks
  • work

Myth #1 about the Architecture/Engineering/ Construction (A/E/C) industry: you need to be an engineer, architect, or construction technician to work here.

//   THINK ABOUT IT   //

Every company regardless of what they do needs marketing, business development, human resources, billing, IT, administration, and even graphic design and web development. So if you’re scrolling through job opportunities and that A/E/C firm pops up, don’t be so hasty in scrolling past! Here’s eight reasons why people who aren’t engineers really enjoy working in the A/E/C industry.

1. The Hustle and Bustle

Whether you’re in graphic design, HR, or IT, the verdict is in: no day is ever the same, and time moves quickly.

2. Constant Learning Curve

Professional development matters to everyone, right? No one wants to be stagnant. We feel the same way. This industry gives you lots of space to move around and explore. One of my coworkers literally started in administration, moved into marketing, and now works in graphic design and web design (and this was after she had been in the army, worked in screen printing and worked tech support for SAS). As a non-engineer, you’re never limited to a single task in this industry and there’s always space for professional development.

Blocks stacked in a stair pattern with the word growth and an upward arrow.

3. Patience

This is a skill you don’t see on “thing you need to know about career-ing” lists. It takes patience to thrive in this industry, because you might be working on projects that last for years. It’s a “soft” skill you’ll quickly develop in the technical industry.

A lady with her eyes closed, meditating at her work desk.

4. Communication

Speaking of soft skills! People who aren’t engineers in this field have to think critically to communicate in this engineering-heavy industry. From multiple interview with professionals, here are some key takeaways about how communication in this industry is different from others:

  • This industry teaches you how to defend the importance of your work and how to explain to someone why they should care about your work, especially when they don’t understand what you do.
  • This industry gives you the opportunity to talk to everyone from a bunch of different backgrounds and help a lot of different people with your skillset.
  • This industry teaches you to have all your details and points put together, because the people you are communicating with expect you to have your I’s dotted and t’s crossed.
  • You are in charge of making sure people have the information that helps them live better lives and make the right decisions for their future.
Sketch of different ways to communicate

5. Traveling and Connecting

Just as your firm has to travel to get to what needs built, designed, planned etc., you get to travel to those places. The nature of this work means that you will get to meet people you never would have and experience things you didn’t know was out there. Most people look for that, but you won’t always find it in a desk job. Here you do.

Woman walking through the airport with a bag.

6. Team Based Collaboration

Roads literally aren’t built with one set of hands, or even one company. Everyone has to come together to get things built, and the non-engineering side of A/E/C firms often work the same way. You learn how to reach across some barriers – be that distance, or discipline – to make your projects work for your client. Collaborative environments were happening in A/E/C before offices stopped having walls and everyone sat at the same table to work.

Group of Workers Collaborating at a Table

7. Job Security

Unless you live that forest hermit life, there are very few places where the A/E/C industry does not exist in some form. Just as the job outlook for engineers is always growing, there’s always potential for people who are not engineers to work for these firms.

8. Fun and Success

As much as everyone likes job security and paid time off, the greatest benefit is enjoying your day. And while engineering isn’t known for its parties, it is known for its great successes. Without A/E/C, there’d be no Brooklyn bridge, no Interstate 40, nowhere to park your car or buy your groceries. And without the people behind the engineering, those successes wouldn’t be real today.


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Lauren Stearley
Lauren Stearley is our Marketing Coordinator. She writes the content needed to get Summit’s name out there. Born at 9:09 in February, Lauren has always lived in North Carolina, except for a brief stint in England. When she is not marketing Summit’s many different services, Lauren enjoys gardening, taking naps in her hammock and reading historical fiction.