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7 Tips to Land Your Next Quality Engineer Role

Quality Engineer Tips to Take Your Next Career Step

Whether just starting out in a Quality Engineer job or as a seasoned professional seeking your next career move, it can be difficult to find the best-fit job for you. From our experience – and the experience of the thousands of active and passive job seekers we’ve helped secure their next move – we have compiled these seven tips to help you land your next role as a quality engineer.

1. Know Yourself

Before starting a job search, it’s crucial to know yourself. There are three parts to a successful self-evaluation:

i. Identify your skillsets

What is it that you bring to the table? What technical skills and experience do you possess, and what are the soft skills that you practice every day?

ii. Figure out your career objectives
Why are you considering a new Quality Engineer job? Your reason depends upon your situation, of course. As a graduate you may be looking for a first job. As an already employed quality engineer, you may be seeking the next step up in your career – perhaps in a supervisory or management role. If you have recently been made unemployed, you may be seeking to get back on the ladder quickly.
Start by figuring out what you value most and what will make you happiest and most fulfilled in a new role. For example, do you care more about being recognised for your efforts? Is the commute to work a drag for you? Is remuneration a key driver for you?

iii. Plug the gaps
Now, compare your skillsets to your objectives. Read job descriptions that meet your objectives. Are there any skillsets or knowledge that you are lacking? If there are, then figure out how to plug those gaps.

If there are areas in your current job that you wouldn’t mind doing more of in the future, now is the perfect opportunity to be building that expertise. Whether that’s through structured training and development programs or more self-driven experiences like industry events, or subscriptions to industry material for example, it’s always good for your career to continue learning and developing your skillsets. .

Upskilling and further development is an essential element of our work environment today – said Mary Jo Parker from Innopharma Education, an accredited training provider in STEM

Remember also to think about all the things that you value when considering the jobs that you should be applying for. The money may be important to you, but if you hate/dislike commuting and the employer is an hour’s drive from your home on a good day, then you’re not likely to be happy at work.

2. Keep Pushing for Results in Your Current Role

Just because you have made the decision to leave your current Quality Engineer job, now is not the time to take your foot off the pedal. Take the initiative to do things that are not necessarily within your remit. Push for more project work. Be the ideal employee. It’s likely during your next interview for a quality engineer job you’ll be asked about your experience working with:  (should this list start with capital letters?)

• CAPA (Corrective & Preventative Analysis);
• audits;
• continuous Improvements or Six Sigma; (Risk Reduction, Yield Improvements, etc)
• validation
•  statistical techniques ( (e.g. SPC, CpK analysis, sampling techniques).
• project work;
• route cause analysis;
• and so on…

The more experience you can gain from your current employer in these areas, the better.

The continual updating of skills and experience that you can gain from your current employer will provide you with a good example framework for interviews. You’ll be able to discuss your achievements. You’ll have examples to demonstrate that you are a top performer who positively impacts a variety of projects and goes above and beyond their job description. Exactly the type of candidate employers seek.

3. Be selective in Your Search

If you have been made unemployed or you are seeking a first job in quality engineering, don’t be tempted to take a scattergun approach to job seeking. It’s far better to be selective:

• Ensure that you apply only for jobs that closely match your skillset and career objectives
• Research the companies that are advertising these roles or ask your recruiter to brief you (we need to allow somewhere in the blog “find the right recruitment partner who knows your sector and can open doors, support you in preparing)
• Examine the employers’ websites and social media to ensure that they align with your own values and beliefs. Culture fit is important (there must stat on this john – ie % people stay longer when culture fit is right or people enjoy job better etc)

Take note of what current and previous employees have to say about their employer on jobs boards and other social media.
If you apply to as many jobs as are advertised, you’ll waste a lot of time. Your applications will smack of desperation, and the job you are eventually offered is unlikely to be right for you.

4. Use Your Network

When you have a good idea of the type of company you want to work for, the skillsets you possess, and the next step you wish to take, consider employing your network to help you in your job search. The people you know in your professional network all know someone you don’t.

The authors of the book ‘Unlock the Hidden Job Market’ estimate that around 50% of jobs are not advertised. Your network and a partnership with a specialised recruitment agency could be key in accessing this jobs pool.
Reach out to people you know or who you have worked with previously. Pick their brains and let them know that you could be tempted to move – but do so stealthily.

You may also widen your network while searching for your next job in quality engineering. Add connections by attending events and increasing your activity on social media.

5. Personalise Your Job Applications

Personalise your CV and cover letter for each application you make. This doesn’t mean rewriting your CV. Instead, pay attention to the individual job description and the language the employer uses. Highlight the skills and experience the employer has requested, and mirror the language they use. By doing this, your CV is more likely to resonate with the employer – and breeze through automated CV reviews.
In your cover letter, provide a little more information about who you really are, and why you are the best person for the job – but don’t repeat what is in your CV.

6. Prepare for the Interview

Prepare answers to questions that will demonstrate your ability, skills, and experience. Compose sample answers that follow the STAR method – setting Situation, Task, Actions you took, and Results achieved.

Research the company, and, if you know who will be interviewing you, the interviewer, too. This will help you demonstrate that you are enthusiastic about joining the company and provide clues to build rapport with the interviewer. As well as preparing answers (and practicing them), make sure that you have a couple of questions that you can ask during and at the end of the interview. This helps to cement your enthusiasm and show your interest.

7. Be Disciplined and Diligent in Your Job Search

Finding a new job is a job itself. You must work at it, taking a disciplined approach. Set yourself job searching tasks to complete each day and mark out time in your diary to do so. Keep track of your applications and outcomes, and always ask for feedback after interviews.
Land a Job as a Quality Engineer with the Right Salary

These seven tips will help you land a job as a quality engineer. However, it’s essential that before you start your search you know your worth. In Ireland, the average salary for a quality engineer with three to five years’ experience is generally between €40k and €55k – with benefits such as healthcare and pension on top of this.

Some companies may also offer bonuses of around 5-10%. As a senior quality engineer, you should expect a salary of between €45k €55Kand €67k. You should remember, though, salaries can and do vary between industries and companies. To get a gauge on your true worth, contact HERO Recruitment today – the STEM specialists.

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