Recruiting Trends for Mechanical Engineering

The market is hot for mechanical engineers, with engineering and manufacturing companies continuing to fill a number of skilled technical jobs. At Amtec, our direct hire recruiters are seeing this trend will continue as companies grow at an accelerating pace. Many firms are struggling to find enough qualified engineers and technicians to fill their needs, which opens the door for job-seekers who have the necessary skills. This makes recruiting mechanical engineers a top priority for many businesses across the country. 

The job growth outlook for engineers is 7% from 2020 to 2030. The auto industry employs the most mechanical engineers of any industry in the United States. Other major markets include aerospace and defense; oil & gas; power generation; heavy machinery manufacturing; construction equipment manufacturing; industrial machinery fabrication (process industries); medical devices & pharmaceuticals; pulp & paper mills; environmental engineering firms that specialize in wastewater treatment, air quality management systems, etc.; and food processing plants.

About 20,200 openings for mechanical engineer jobs are projected each year over the decade. Many of those openings are expected to result from the need to replace workers who transfer to different occupations or exit the labor force, such as to retire. 

To properly assess the candidate’s technical skills and experience, consider having a panel interview that includes one or more of your current engineers.

The panel interview is a great way for you to get a second opinion about the candidate’s technical skills and experience. It also gives you an opportunity to learn from other engineers’ questions and perspectives, which can provide a broader understanding of their background. It’s a great tool for recruiting mechanical engineers, because candidates see that you value the employees’ insight.

In addition to testing the candidate’s knowledge, encourage team members to ask open-ended questions that help them understand more about the person’s background or career path. The panel should also discuss what they like or dislike about each candidate based on their answers and demeanor during the interview process.

Depending upon the nature of your business and environment, behavioral interview questions should focus on both professional and personal strengths and weaknesses.

Behavioral interview questions are designed to assess how well applicants would behave in real-life work situations. The answers will provide insights into how candidates would approach problems in the future. Behavioral questions may also focus on communication skills, motivation, teamwork and interpersonal relations, as well as leadership or teamwork competencies. It’s important for interviewers to be comfortable asking these types of questions because they can reveal information about an applicant’s behavior outside the workplace environment (if such information exists).

At Amtec, we’re strong believers in behavioral interview questions. You can find out what really needs to be known about candidates so you can make better hiring decisions and ultimately build a more productive team. We have an interview guide tool that can help you ask questions for the competencies your team needs.

For example, if you’re looking for analytical skills, you can ask questions such as:

  • Can you tell me about a time when you discovered a more efficient way to do a work task? or Measure: Use a competency test. Measure quick learning and applying it. Possibly develop a case study from your company’s history, have the candidate read it and then question them on it to determine their analytical skills.
  • Some people work at understanding what is going on around them while others accept the current structure. Can you give an example of the way you prefer to work?
  • Tell us about a time when you had to analyze information and make a recommendation. What kind of thought process did you go through? What was your reasoning behind your decision? How did it turn out? What was the outcome of your analysis?

You can choose which competencies are most important to your team and have behavioral interview questions delivered right to your inbox. 

Use open-ended questions that give you insight into how candidates think through problems so you can better gauge their analytical abilities as well as their individual personalities.

Our direct hire recruiters work with candidates to find out how they think through problems, what they know, and how they would deal with situations. In order to gather this information, our recruiters ask open-ended questions that give them insight into the candidate’s analytical abilities.

One way recruiters can clarify what candidates say is by reflecting back what they hear from them using open-ended responses such as: “It sounds like…” or “What I’m hearing is…” Another helpful way is clarifying any points which are unclear by asking follow up questions such as: “Can I see an example of how this happened?” The intent here is not necessarily being judgmental but rather getting clarification so both parties understand where each stands on any given topic under discussion. 

Mechanical engineers are highly sought after in fields like aerospace, automotive, and manufacturing. 

It’s not uncommon for these professionals to have multiple offers from different companies at the same time. They also need to be able to work on their own and make decisions about what needs to get done within their organization.

How can you make your company stand out to mechanical engineers? Here are some ideas:

1. Offer a good salary

The most important thing to remember is that mechanical engineers are in high demand. That means that they can pick and choose who they work for, so it’s up to you to make sure your company is offering competitive compensation packages in order to attract top talent.

2. Show them how they’ll grow professionally

One of the biggest reasons people leave their jobs is because they feel like there’s no room for growth within their current role. Make sure to articulate clearly how your company offers opportunities for growth and advancement for all employees. If possible, include examples of people who have been promoted within the organization or moved onto other roles due to their hard work and dedication to helping others succeed!

3. Provide an environment where people can thrive

Mechanical engineers love working with other people who share similar interests—which means that having fun together at work is crucial! Consider hosting events on campus or inviting employees’ families in for lunch once a month so that everyone feels like part of a big.

At Amtec, we’re here for your direct hire needs. By partnering with our direct hire recruiters, we’ll share what we’ve learned and help your company prepare for future employment needs. 

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