The chief engineer is generally in charge of building, maintenance, and repairs needed on-site. This position is often a supervisory role, in which the chief engineer works with maintenance subordinates and delegates tasks. Some of the duties of the chief engineer include purchasing materials or equipment, fulfilling budget requirements when ordering supplies, and keeping stock of necessary inventory. The chief engineer must work closely with other managers or supervisors to ensure operations run smoothly and meet standards of safety and cleanliness. This position also requires formulating blueprints and designs to be implemented using machinery and equipment.
Work conditions vary for this position, and hazardous conditions can be common. Chemicals, steam, electricity, and heavy machinery are commonly encountered; wet, noisy, hot, and cold conditions may also exist.
The chief engineer typically needs bachelor's degree or a technical accreditation, as well as experience in the engineering field. A background in HVAC, electrical, or mechanical operations is generally preferred. This position requires physical aptitude, as heavy lifting and physical exertion are common. Excellent problem solving skills, higher mathematical ability, and the ability to work well on a team are also necessary. Being able to understand, analyze, and revise complex technical data is highly recommended, and the ideal candidate will seek to improve upon established methodologies and procedures.
Chief Engineer Tasks
- Operate, maintain, and repair equipment and machinery.
- Develop designs, specifications, and/or software of new product development projects.
- Ensure quality assurance for facility and its services.
- Supervise engineering department staff and operations, and provide technical leadership and mentoring from quotation to execution.
- Secure internal, external, and customer funding and assist in the development, preparation, and implementation of operating and capital budgets, and control of expenditures.