Field engineers can work in a variety of jobs. They are specialists employed at companies that offer services to clients, and they usually work in the field, which is to say on locations owned by the client and not the company at which they are employed. The locations can range from various production facilities and plants to oil fields. Field engineers' job title is not defined by a particular set of skills, but by the fact that they do not work at their company office. In the field, they can act as service representatives, oversee operations, install equipment and maintain and repair the existing one, or supervise all engineering operations at any given location. Skills A field engineer usually works directly with clients, which means that excellent business and communications skills are a must in this line of work. Analytical and problem solving skills are just as essential to the profession. Field engineers must have a high degree of mobility and be able to adapt to living conditions that are sometimes less than ideal. They must be able to handle stress and work in high pressure environments or under difficult conditions, such as those at wellsites. Dexterity and good motor skills are very important because the nature of the work can be quite physical. A good engineer must have an inventive mind and be able to address a number of unforeseen problems that arise over the course of a project. Usually there are many, especially when a project involves new equipment or procedures. If their job involves maintenance of specific products or equipment, field engineers must have an excellent knowledge of those products and all the relevant health and safety regulations. Field engineering is an area that always keeps up with the rapid changes in technology, so it is essential for any professional working in this field to keep up with the changes and to sign up for additional training and education courses when necessary. Qualifications Field engineers usually learn all the necessary skills through training programs provided by their employer. An academic degree is required for most positions, but the discipline will depend on the nature of the work and the responsibilities the job entails. Degrees in engineering, construction, information science, electronics, utilities, and computer programming are just some of the common ones among field engineers. Work Field engineers are typically involved in all phases of a project. They do research, collect all the information necessary for the planning stage, design plans for long-term projects, install equipment and test it to make sure that it is functional and that all the safety requirements are met. Their role can entail providing support to an existing team of technicians and engineers or it can be a supervisory one, depending on their area of specialty and years of experience in the field. The day-to-day duties of a field engineer can vary greatly depending on the nature of the project, as well as on the engineer's area of specialty, employer, and willingness to travel. Field engineers can take short trips to diagnose problems and do repairs, or they can travel to a different continent to perform tasks. If they choose to be self-employed, they can create their own schedules, and decide which projects to take on.
A good engineer must have an inventive mind and be able to address a number of unforeseen problems that arise over the course of a project. Usually there are many, especially when a project involves new equipment or procedures.