Industrial engineers find ways to eliminate wastefulness in production processes. They devise efficient systems that integrate workers, machines, materials, information, and energy to make a product or provide a service.
Industrial engineers typically do the following:
Industrial engineers apply their skills to many different situations, from manufacturing to healthcare systems to business administration. For example, they design systems for
Some industrial engineers, called manufacturing engineers, focus entirely on the automated aspects of manufacturing processes. They design manufacturing systems to optimize the use of computer networks, robots, and materials.
Industrial engineers focus on how to get the work done most efficiently, balancing many factors, such as time, number of workers needed, available technology, actions workers need to take, achieving the end product with no errors, workers’ safety, environmental concerns, and cost.
The versatility of industrial engineers allows them to engage in activities that are useful to a variety of businesses, governments, and nonprofits. For example, industrial engineers engage in supply chain management to help businesses minimize inventory costs, conduct quality assurance activities to help businesses keep their customer bases satisfied, and work in the growing field of project management as industries across the economy seek to control costs and maximize efficiencies.
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Industrial Engineers,
on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/ooh/architecture-and-engineering/industrial-engineers.htm#tab-2 (visited January 8, 2019).