5 Best Alternative Careers for Engineering Grads

5 Best Alternative Careers for Engineering Grads

Career Paths Posted by: GradSiren
Time to Read:   3 min

Entry Level Jobs

If you’re pursuing an engineering degree or you’ve already graduated, you might decide to search for a job that’s not typical for your engineering focus, whether it’s electrical, mechanical, geo technical, or some other type of engineering.

Engineering graduates typically have strong skills in numeracy, problem-solving, and logical thinking. These skills open up a wide range of career options for engineering graduates in various sectors depending on other strengths, talents, and interests you might have.

Here are the five best alternative careers for engineering graduates and anyone with an engineering degree who wants to start their career in another field.


Alternative Career Opportunities for Engineering Graduates

Project Management

Project management is one of the best alternative careers for an engineer at the entry level. If you’re comfortable interacting with people in a leadership role, this might be for you.

Project management is a role which connects individuals, teams, and various tasks between departments involved in the project. You may be involved in designing, development, and testing as a project manager, and you’ll need to conduct assessments and plan work strategies for project completion.

If you’re lucky enough to have an internship in project management, that’s an additional advantage for an entry-level job.


Procurement and Purchase

Another great alternative career for engineers is in the procurement department. Procurement is the process of purchasing equipment and products related to various projects, and you’ll need to source the correct items at reasonable prices without compromising product quality.

A procurement specialist ensures timely delivery of the final product to the customer or team responsible for project development. An individual with an engineering background can examine the product and technical specifications more deeply and carefully, in many cases, than others before purchasing.

This type of purchasing may deal with millions of dollars, so you should have strong negotiation and general communication skills as well as confidence in managing interactions with sales people and others involved in the purchase.


Technical Writing

Technical writing may cover many different subjects, and graduates with engineering backgrounds are ideally suited to write a variety of technological documents. The good news is that technical writers are currently in huge demand based on the document specifications.

Writing is an interesting career opportunity with good salaries. If you’re pursuing a course in technical writing or believe you already have strong writing skills, remember that on-the-job experience is often the best teacher. Some companies do, in fact, train employees for these positions.

If you enjoy writing and communicating the most minute details and specifications, technical writing can be a great alternative career for an engineer.


Academic Faculty   

Teaching is one of the best professions for those who enjoy interacting with people and sharing their knowledge.

Engineering graduates can start their careers as an adjunct instructor, professor, or lecturer at a university or college with a post-graduate degree or, depending on experience or outstanding achievements, with a master or bachelor degree. You might even be interested in a public school position, which might require a few additional courses.

A master or doctoral program, although not always necessary to teach at the college or university level, can be an added advantage if you secure a position as a teaching assistant while studying. In this way, you can gain the teaching experience and contacts needed when looking for a full-time position.

Teaching is a profession with a variety of different opportunities, many of which do not adhere strictly to textbooks. The competition in this field is bit high, but if you’re willing to relocate and apply widely, you have a good chance of finding a satisfying position in this field.

Technical Recruitment Specialist

One of the fastest growing opportunities for engineers is in the technical recruitment field. Most Fortune 500 companies hire technical background personnel in their recruitment departments to identify the best candidates for their company, and other companies do the same.

The responsibility of these recruitment professionals is to interview the graduates and choose the best people for various positions. With an engineering background, you’ll have knowledge in the technical aspects of the open positions and be able to communicate effectively with nervous applicants who have technical or engineering backgrounds.

While most companies prefer experienced technical people for this position, they also welcome recent graduates. It’s a responsible job that requires excellent communication skills, insight into the finer details of a position, an understanding of human nature, and good judgment. The salary, though, is typically high.


Many alternative careers exist for engineers, but these five are the best for career satisfaction as well as salary and perks. Why not choose one based on your skills and interests and do some research? Start here: What career is right for me? https://www.gradsiren.com/career-advice/7-best-career-assessment-tools-for-recent-grads/

For more entry-level opportunities in the engineering field, check out the best job portal for recent graduates. https://www.gradsiren.com/registration

Comments are welcome. And if you know of other alternative careers for those of us with engineering backgrounds, please share. Or ask questions and get answers to your questions from career experts!

Was this article helpful?

The information on this site is provided as a courtesy. GradSiren is not a career or legal advisor and does not guarantee job interviews or offers.

Get expert career advice and insights delivered straight to your inbox.


5 Best Alternative Careers for Engineering Grads

by GradSiren 3 min read