Few entrepreneurs endure the agony of starting a business hoping that business crumbles within a few short years. The prestige and power of business ownership develops over the long-term as an entrepreneur grows into an executive of a corporate empire. However, as businesses grow, they become more complex. A startup might have less than 10 employees working together in a cramped room but, over time, a business’ smallest team might consist of hundreds of workers. In successful businesses, leaders waste hours desperately trying to keep their departments organized and productive.
That’s when a systems engineer comes in handy. Both an engineer and a manager — though not necessarily an engineer manager — a systems engineer is skilled in managing complex systems, like corporate structure. Business leaders, owners, and aspirers should seriously consider bringing a systems engineer onboard for the following reasons.
Managers trained in business understand people and money — but they rarely understand what it takes to accomplish the goods and services their companies offer. If a business decides to go forward with a new product, a MBA is rarely equipped to estimate what raw materials are necessary, how much they will cost, and what experts should come aboard to design and build. This is especially true when a company juggles projects under a range of fields.
Meanwhile, someone who has earned a control systems engineering degree is trained in understanding a breadth of disciplines, and often a systems engineer can determine a new project’s requirements with ease. The field of systems engineering aims to co-ordinate the objectives of individual projects with overall organizational goals; a systems engineer must be able to anticipate a project’s requirements with surprising specificity. In doing so, systems engineers are effective at keeping businesses working toward their goals while expanding.
Budgeting, Budgeting, Budgeting
Every manager must be adept at creating a realistic budget. Because systems engineers have wide-ranging knowledge, they are especially adept at determining how much money to devote to which operation. In fact, many companies decide to hire a systems engineer when they notice their operational costs skyrocketing and hope to reverse their expenditures.
Some organizations choose not to bring on a systems engineer for fear of overloading the budget. Indeed, these professionals do demand high salaries — averaging about $85,000, with more experienced systems engineers at larger firms taking upward of $100,000 — but the value they add to a business’ operations is drastic. One study found that programs overseen by systems engineers were between 13 and 50 percent more productive — earning the business more than enough money to pay for one incredibly valuable worker.
Ensuring Compatibility With Other Projects
Rarely is a product so revolutionary that it stands alone, interacting with nothing else. Most often, companies produce products to work with other goods and services. Therefore, if the new product is not compatible with other projects, it is ineffective and ultimately a waste of everyone’s time.
Fortunately, systems engineers can determine compatibility between different ongoing and completed projects to ensure parts will work together to create a fully functioning whole. Because systems engineers are technically trained, they not only manage projects to ensure every team has the resources they need; they also know how to evaluate the products produced to ascertain that various projects will be harmonious. With a control systems engineer on the team, businesses rarely waste time and money developing products that don’t work well with others.
Easing Communication Between Everyone
Any business leader who works alongside engineers knows that those professionals have a unique way of communicating, quite unlike the mannerisms of typical business speech and writing. In fact, the modes of communication are so disparate that sometimes messages can break down in the no-man’s-land between the business side and engineering.
One of systems engineers’ primary goals is to facilitate communication between different groups working on one project. However, unlike project managers or other professionals often responsible for this task, systems engineers have wider experience with both fields, business and engineering, so they can actually translate messages from one group to another. Thus, systems engineers can ensure that everyone has realistic expectations for a project and that everyone in the business — from executives to consumers — are satisfied with the results.