This is a highly specialized
position meant for the engineer who has decided that a
of science or technology
will become the foundation of the person’s career.
Sometimes we confused this position with the product development
engineer. Many companies actually call their product development
engineers as R&D. This is not exactly correct.
There are many elements in the job specification that separates
these two jobs:
- R&D develops knowledge that does not exist today,
but will be useful for tomorrow’s solutions.
development develops on existing body of knowledge to
realize today’s products and solutions.
- R&D is highly specialized in a particular field. Dwells
deeply into the theoretical foundations of a technology.
development can be specialized but from a product perspective.
Dwells into the various
technologies and solutions
that when combined together will create a competitive
- R&D delivers new knowledge to a company’s creation
development delivers new products to the market.
the product development engineer, the R&D engineer
does not need to gain experience as a manufacturing, product
and product development engineer. Although beneficial,
it is possible for candidates to move straight into this
if the scientific background is appropriate. The reason
is that knowledge is not product related, but products are
and process related.
In general, the R&D engineering
career is a life career choice. Engineers here move from
jobs in different
companies more for the technology than for promotions. Of
course, pay is still an important factor.
Most companies use R&D engineers to realize their long-term
technology acquisition roadmaps. All companies have a vision
of the future and what needs to be overcome to get there.
R&D engineers are hired to overcome the technology barriers
and come up with knowledge leading to the solutions required
for the company’s winning future product offerings.
It is important to note that
in the business world, even R&D engineers are on a timeline – sometimes
tight ones. It is necessary that companies compete with
acquisition as much as market dominance. No company is alone
it its research and development initiatives. Competitors
compete on who will be first in acquiring the key knowledge.
Here are some key successful
characteristics for an R&D
- A passion for the technical selected field of interest.
- An expert in the theoretical and design aspects of
- Have a wide network of collaborators of equal standing
both inside and outside of the company.
leadership within the company to identify knowledge development
initiatives within the company’s technology vision.
key contributor to the company’s technology roadmap
via deep understanding of the challenges faced towards
acquiring these technologies.
- A good communicator that is able to motivate the thinking