Careers Guidance for Electrical Engineers | Job Opportunities

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Career guidance electrical engineering

This career guidance and career Planning blog is intended for electrical engineers (EEE) who wish to pursue their career in electrical domain after electrical engineering. Few important questions that comes to the mind of final year electrical engineering students are

  • How to get a job in electrical company?
  • What are the courses to do after electrical engineering ?
  • How to find entry level electrical engineering jobs?
  • What is the job description of electrical engineer ?

This blog is intended to answer these question. Before going into companies which provides the jobs for electrical engineers, lets have a look at the type of jobs available in electrical domain and skills required for each Job. Some skills are not mandatory as a fresher, but having those skills will significantly improve the chances of getting jobs. Different Openings for Electrical Engineers and Skill set required for each engineering Job is given below

JOB CategoryRequired Skill Set
Industrial Automation PLC,SCADA,DCS,Electrical Engineering Basics,Communication protocols like IEC 104,IEC 61850,Modbus,DNP3
Substation Automation RTU,PLC,SCADA,Electrical Engineering Basics, Communication protocols like IEC 104,IEC 61850,Modbus,DNP3
Power System Analysis Fault Analysis,Electrical Network Analysis,Power Flow Basics,Electrical Engineering Basics
Microchip Design B.E,B.Tech,M.E,M.Tech, Electrical Engineering Advanced
Equipment Manufacturing Home Electrical Appliances,Electrical Engineering Basics
Power System Equipment Manufacturing DRIVES,Relay, Meter, transformer,Breaker,Generator, Electrical Engineering Basics
Plant Operation & Maintenance Electrical Engineering Basics
Research and Development Careers Optimization, ANN, FANN, Electrical Engineering Advanced

Let us have look at the companies that provide electrical engineering jobs in each category for electrical engineers. 

JOB CategoryCompanies
Industrial Automation ABB, Seimens, Schneider Electric, Rockwell Automation
Substation Automation ABB, Seimens, Alstom, Areva, Schneider Electric
Power System Analysis Digsilent
Microchip Design microchip
Equipment Manufacturing ABB, Seimens, Alstom, Areva, Schneider Electric
Power System Equipment Manufacturing ABB, Seimens, Alstom, Areva, Schneider Electric
Plant Operation & Maintenance All Private and Government owned Cement,Steel,Oil and Gas, Aluminium, Paper, Copper Plants. All Private and Government owned Power Plants, Transmission Companies and Distribution utilities.
Research and Development Careers ABB, Seimens, Alstom, Areva, Schneider Electric

Now lets have a detailed look at each skill.

PLC

PLC (Programmable Logic Controller) is used in automation industry for controlling electromechanical process. PLC consists of a processor, communication modules, analog and digital cards. External devices can communicate with PLC using protocols like IEC 104,IEC 61850,Modbus,DNP3 etc. PLC Programmers can write logic's to control a electromechanical system and download into PLC. When inputs are received from the field device, PLC program executes and sends out necessary commands as per Logic.PLC Programming Languages are based IEC 1131-3 standard. IEC standard specify following list of languages of PLC.

  • Ladder Logic diagram (LD)
  • Structured Text (ST)
  • Function Block Diagram (FBD)
  • Sequential Function Charts (SFC)
  • Instruction List (IL)

RTU

RTU ( Remote Terminal Unit) is a microprocessor controlled electronic device, which act as an interface between Field devices and PLC, DCS, SCADA . Simple programs are downloaded and get executed inside RTU. RTU fetch data from field devices like Transducers, Sensor, Relay, Meter etc. via Serial,Ethernet cables. RTU can be interfaced with other equipments or software's over standard communication protocols like IEC 104,IEC 61850, Modbus, DLMS,DNP3 etc.

DCS

DCS (Distributed Control System) is the brain of automation system. DCS functions as a coordinated control system for all the PLCs to control the operations of a plant.  Every plant will have sub divisions. For example in a steel plant there will be mills like casting mill, furnace,manufacturing and packing. Each mill be controlled by a PLC. DCS system sits on top of all these mills, which control and communicates between the PLC's and sends necessary commands.

SCADA

SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition) is a type of control system which is used to monitor data Polled from PLC, RTU using protocols like IEC 104, IEC 61850,Modbus, DNP3 etc. Polled data will be stored in the system for online and Offline analysis via real time trends, Historical graphs etc. SCADA can send commands to PLC's, RTU's on user action.

PROTOCOLS

Protocols that are mainly used in communication are IEC 104, IEC 61850, Modbus, DLMS, DNP3 etc. Since most protocols are IEC standard protocols, working with RTU's, DCS and PLC's of different manufacturers will be easy.

Research and Development

As population and industries grow, demand for power grows exponentially. Starting new power projects is not the best solution to tackle this issue. So governments around the world is pumping huge amount of money in power sector research and development for increasing efficiency in generation,transmission and distribution of power. So choosing careers in research and development for Engineers after Electrical engineering is a good move, since research and development are well funded. In order to increase efficiency in power sector, power production need to be optimized and and power should be generated with high efficiency. The generated power need to be transmitted and distributed to end customers with less transmission loss. So there are n number of areas for research in power sector. Areas for research development are

  • Optimization Solutions in power plant to increase efficiency using ANN, FANN, Genetic Algorithm etc.
  • Load Flow Analysis in Transmission and Distribution networks for reducing Transmission loss
  • Optimization solution in power exchange scheduling process between Transmission,generation and distribution networks.
  • Smart devices and equipments like smart meters, smart home appliances development which consume less power. Smart devices and equipments are a part of world wide initiative to save power called "SMART GRID"

Hope this article provides an insight to electrical engineering students in choosing careers, jobs after engineering.