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Computer Hardware Engineer

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What You Need to Know About Computer Hardware Engineer

Job Description & Duties Research, design, develop, or test computer or computer-related equipment for commercial, industrial, military, or scientific use. May supervise the manufacturing and installation of computer or computer-related equipment and components.

Daily Life Of a Computer Hardware Engineer

  • Provide technical support to designers, marketing and sales departments, suppliers, engineers and other team members throughout the product development and implementation process.
  • Confer with engineering staff and consult specifications to evaluate interface between hardware and software and operational and performance requirements of overall system.
  • Select hardware and material, assuring compliance with specifications and product requirements.
  • Design and develop computer hardware and support peripherals, including central processing units (CPUs), support logic, microprocessors, custom integrated circuits, and printers and disk drives.
  • Recommend purchase of equipment to control dust, temperature, and humidity in area of system installation.
  • Store, retrieve, and manipulate data for analysis of system capabilities and requirements.

Things a Computer Hardware Engineer Should Know How to Do

These are the skills Computer Hardware Engineers say are the most useful in their careers:

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Writing: Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Active Learning: Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.

Types of Computer Hardware Engineer

  • Field Service Engineer
  • Computer Architect
  • Telecommunications Engineer
  • Systems Integration Engineer
  • Computer Engineer

Is There Job Demand for Computer Hardware Engineers?

There were about 73,600 jobs for Computer Hardware Engineer in 2016 (in the United States). New jobs are being produced at a rate of 5.4% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 4,000 new jobs for Computer Hardware Engineer by 2026. The BLS estimates 5,100 yearly job openings in this field.

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The states with the most job growth for Computer Hardware Engineer are North Dakota, Tennessee, and Washington. Watch out if you plan on working in Minnesota, Idaho, or Oklahoma. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Computer Hardware Engineer Salary

The salary for Computer Hardware Engineers ranges between about $66,700 and $172,630 a year.

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Computer Hardware Engineers who work in California, District of Columbia, or Maryland, make the highest salaries.

How much do Computer Hardware Engineers make in each U.S. state?

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $108,040
Arizona $110,600
Arkansas $109,810
California $131,570
Colorado $117,120
Connecticut $105,980
District of Columbia $126,770
Florida $97,830
Georgia $100,190
Hawaii $96,080
Idaho $106,680
Illinois $101,630
Indiana $82,130
Kansas $88,630
Kentucky $85,340
Louisiana $81,660
Maryland $125,290
Massachusetts $123,650
Minnesota $107,780
Mississippi $90,320
Missouri $100,160
Nevada $88,670
New Hampshire $114,280
New Jersey $115,090
New York $114,590
North Carolina $108,090
Ohio $102,820
Oklahoma $103,570
Oregon $111,020
Pennsylvania $107,410
Rhode Island $104,400
South Carolina $87,870
Tennessee $87,910
Texas $116,720
Virginia $119,500
Washington $123,680
West Virginia $96,370
Wisconsin $88,780

What Tools do Computer Hardware Engineers Use?

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Computer Hardware Engineers:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Web browser software
  • Python
  • Microsoft Access
  • Data entry software
  • Word processing software
  • Autodesk AutoCAD
  • Spreadsheet software
  • Microsoft Visio
  • Database software
  • Structured query language SQL
  • The MathWorks MATLAB
  • SAS
  • Linux
  • Microsoft Visual Basic
  • UNIX
  • Computer aided design CAD software
  • National Instruments LabVIEW

Becoming a Computer Hardware Engineer

Learn what Computer Hardware Engineer education requirements there are.

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What work experience do I need to become a Computer Hardware Engineer?

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Who Employs Computer Hardware Engineers?

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Computer Hardware Engineers work in the following industries:

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Other Jobs You May be Interested In

Those thinking about becoming a Computer Hardware Engineer might also be interested in the following careers:

Those who work as a Computer Hardware Engineer sometimes switch careers to one of these choices:

References:

Image Credit: via CC0 Public Domain

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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