Facilities mechanical engineer job description

January 25, 2022

A facilities mechanical engineer combines aspects of the facilities management role with a mechanical engineer role. It is a highly niche role that would suit anyone with a background in mechanical engineering.

A facilities mechanical engineer is responsible for planning, implementing, maintaining and optimising the infrastructure and equipment in buildings and other facilities. They might work alone to keep the infrastructure running as it should, or they might be part of a wider team of facilities management professionals.

This role often requires analytical skills and the ability to juggle a wide-ranging workload. The role of the facilities mechanical engineer will require them to analyse and optimise resources, monitor energy use and make sure that all safety protocols are up-to-date and observed. 

If you’re thinking about a role in facilities mechanical engineering, read on to learn more about this fast-paced and engaging role.

What is a facilities mechanical engineer?

What is a facilities mechanical engineer?

A facilities mechanical engineer is a niche role that includes elements of mechanical engineering with facilities management and facilities engineering. A mechanical engineer is responsible for planning, building and maintaining equipment and systems, while a facilities engineer is responsible for the systems in a specific building, structure or organisation.

Combining the two allows an individual to take responsibility for the successful operation of an entire structure. Within this specific role, it’s also possible to focus on a specific area of facilities mechanical engineering such as planning and design or auditing existing facilities.

As facilities become more automated, the facilities mechanical engineer will also be responsible for implementing automation systems and monitoring for faults. This is a fast-paced and varied role where two days will truly never be the same. Graduates with experience in industrial, mechanical or electrical engineering would be well-placed to explore this type of role.

Facilities mechanical engineer responsibilities

Depending on the facility you are working in, the facilities mechanical engineer could be responsible for the following tasks within a company:

  • Conducting research on systems and equipment and presenting this information to key stakeholders and decision-makers.
  • Assessing existing equipment and specifications.
  • Analysing data and preparing blueprints/reports.
  • Designing layouts for new facilities and buildings.
  • Optimising and managing resource allocation across a facility.
  • Coordinating contractors for installation and maintenance projects.
  • Checking work completed by contractors for compliance and safety.
  • Designing and implementing safety standards for operations.
  • Evaluating the efficiency of systems and equipment within a facility.
  • Preparing reports and documentation.
  • Creating maintenance plans and schedules.
  • Ensuring all relevant building regulations are observed.

The exact role requirements to become a facilities mechanical engineer will all depend on the type of facility you are working in. It will also be determined by the stage of development. For example, a consultant tasked with designing a new facility will have a very different experience to one tasked with updating an existing facility.

Requirements to become a facilities mechanical engineer

Most facilities mechanical engineers will have a degree in engineering, typically mechanical, electrical or industrial. Many facilities mechanical engineer roles will also require prior experience in a facilities engineering role. There are also technical and soft skills that will need to be demonstrated in the interview to ensure success in this role. The typical facilities mechanical engineer role will stipulate the following requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree in engineering (mechanical, electrical or industrial)
  • Minimum of 3 years experience in facilities engineering or similar
  • Working knowledge of AutoCAD, CAP and MS Office, or similar.
  • Knowledge of construction principles and building processes.
  • Understanding of building regulations and health and safety.
  • Excellent communication skills, including the ability to work well with non-engineering colleagues.
  • Problem-solving skills and the ability to troubleshoot on the spot.
  • Experience with project management principles.

Entry routes to facilities mechanical engineering

Entry routes to facilities mechanical engineering

The most common route into a facilities mechanical engineering role is with a Bachelor’s degree in an engineering discipline. Typically this would include mechanical, electrical or industrial engineering. In order to secure a spot to study for a BA in engineering, you would typically need A-Levels in maths, physics and one other subject. 

The entry requirements for every university will differ. For example, The University of Manchester requires candidates to have A*AA in maths, physics and one other subject. Applicants to the University of Wolverhampton would require CCC/BCD in maths, and technology or science-based subject.

An engineering degree will typically take three years to complete on a full-time basis and six years on a part-time basis. Once qualified as an engineer, you would then need to secure a role as a facilities engineer or facilities maintenance engineer. You might enter this sector as an assistant or start out as a building services engineer.

If you are interested in working in a facilities mechanical engineer role, you would then need to explore job openings for this type of role. Most people think about making a switch after around three years in their facilities maintenance role. If you start out in a junior position working under an existing facilities mechanical engineer, you might be able to make this transition sooner with the right mentorship.

Salary and working patterns for facilities mechanical engineer

Most facilities mechanical engineers will earn more than £40,000 with a host of benefits available. This could include a housing allowance, transport allowance, bonuses and the option to carry out additional overtime. Through overtime, you could vastly increase your earning potential.

In terms of career progression, you may be able to move into a consultant role which would allow you to take a step back from the hands-on work and oversee your own team. You could also consult on the design of new facilities.

Gaining chartered status as an engineer would also help to increase your earning potential and open up a world of job opportunities. It would also enable you to work anywhere in the world, as chartered status is recognised around the world. 

Chartered status will require further formal education, usually a Master’s degree or PhD. However, since chartered engineers are typically the highest-earning engineers, this additional education and dedication to the sector can pay off in the long term.

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