Structural engineers are used to designing strong, sound construction projects. When hiring managers look for new employees, they want to see evidence of that ability as well as great focus on detail. You’re ready to build up your career and are looking for the right codes to get your started.
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This resume guide, along with the corresponding resume example will cover the following topics:
- What does a structural engineer do?
- Tips and tricks a structural engineer resume
- Professional resume layout and design hints.
What does a structural engineer do?
Structural engineers work to ensure that existing structures and structures being built are safe, functional and aesthetically pleasing. They address problems and concerns with building design and safety, and offer solutions.
Structural engineers are a subset of civil engineers. They typically oversee buildings, houses, bridges, tunnels and other large structures. They might assist with the planning and construction of new structures or design alterations to be made to existing structures. The create drawings, calculate loads and other building specifications, review other engineers’ work, according to the Structural Engineers Association of California.
A few of the many structural engineering specialties include:
The goal of a structural engineer is to ensure that a structure is capable of withstanding loads and stresses, and elements it is exposed to. Most structural engineers work for construction or engineering agencies, lending their expert services to achieve safe and pleasing structures. If you have a specialty, make sure you clearly define it.
What’s the job market for structural engineers?
There are more than 300,000 civil engineers in the United States today. Not all are structural engineers, however. The overall growth rate for civil engineers in the next decade is predicted to be 8%, or about average for all careers, according to U.S. statistics.
The median income for a structural engineer is $85,548, but the typical salary range is $76,676-$94,029, Salary.com reports.
How to write a structural engineer resume
You’re great at structure, so show off that skill by applying the classic resume sections to your application.
Your CV should contain the following elements:
- The resume header
- The resume summary (aka profile or personal statement)
- The employment history section
- The resume skills section
- The education section
All great resumes take into account the specific job and the style and culture of the company to which it is addressed. Research your prospective employer so that you can highlight the skills and attributes that will make you a great fit for the job. Adopt a professional tone unless you know for sure that the company is more low key.
Account for the ATS
Make sure you optimize for each position by analyzing the job listing and comparing keywords and phrases to your resume. Organically insert those important words into your resume to boost your chances against the Applicant Tracking System algorithms. There are no guarantees, but this step, along with using a standard format, can help land your resume in the hands of a hiring manager.
Need more guidance on how to write your resume? Look to our related engineering resume samples listed here below.
- Facilities Engineer resume sample
- Electrical Engineer resume sample
- Engineering resume sample
- Civil Engineer resume sample
- CNC machinist resume sample
- Agricultural Engineer resume sample
- Technician resume sample
- Health and Safety Engineer resume sample
- Research Engineer resume sample
- Process Engineer resume sample
- Project Engineer resume sample
- Mechanical Engineer resume sample
Choosing the best resume format for a structural engineer
The format of your resume is the primary structural system for the information you want to impart. For most careers, we recommend the reverse chronological order format and your structural engineer resume is no exception. Why? First, when you apply online and the ATS scans your resume it inputs it into a reverse chronological structure. If you have used an alternate format, you will have a lot more work reorganizing the online information. Second, this format is familiar to recruiters and allows them to quickly scan for items such as your current work situation.
If you are looking for your first job as a structural engineer, check out the resume formats we suggest as chronological alternatives or hybrids. They may also be of interest to mature workers or career-changers. The functional resume format is mostly reserved for highly technical or scientific careers where a professional wants to emphasize niche skills over experience.
Resume summary example: build a picture of success
Getting a new job entails more than simply stating your qualifications. The most impressive resumes build a strong frame that includes the highlights of your career and offers a glimpse of your professional demeanor and the way you approach projects.
The summary, also known as a profile, affords an opportunity with your structural engineering resume to take your best career material and put it on display. You have about 4 lines to give recruiters an idea what you can do under stress and how you relate to coworkers and stakeholders on construction projects. Describe your proudest achievement. Then use strong, positive language to illustrate your work style and your approach to building.
Clearly answer the question, “Why should I hire you?”
You can find a structural engineer resume example summary below.
Experienced and dynamic structural engineer with a proven track record of ensuring that structures are architecturally safe and compliant with codes. Familiar with the construction management process, and adept in advising clients regarding the proper materials and layout during the building process. Experienced in providing services for both residential and commercial projects, and adept in communicating recommendations and concerns clearly and effectively. Committed to identifying issues and achieving solutions to increase safety, functionality, and aesthetics.
Employment history sample: a strong foundation
The employment history section of your structural engineering resume tells recruiters the value you will bring to your new position by demonstrating what you have already accomplished. This is where reverse chronological order comes into play. Start with your most recent position and go back about 10 years.
To create a superior CV, avoid listing responsibilities and instead tout achievements. Detail your contribution to projects, especially those that demonstrate work you will be expected to complete in your new job. Use data to strengthen your claims.
Begin each bullet with an action word, then follow it up with a terse summary of your achievement. Don’t waste space with words such as “I was responsible for …” or “In this position I …”
You can find a resume example for your employment history section below.
- Provided structural evaluations and design services for hundreds of homes in the Seattle area.
- Consulted with architects and clients to ensure the proper materials and layouts were being implemented to achieve safety, functionality, efficiency, and beauty.
- Performed structural stability calculations and sketched support drawings prior to construction.
- Successfully drafted plans for complex reinforcement structures.
- Worked with contractors to address deficiencies and design plans to rectify them.
CV skills example: concrete abilities
Of course structural engineers need extensive knowledge of building concepts, materials, math and physics, but they also need a host of soft skills. Within the skills section of your structural engineer CV, you need to convey the right mix of expertise and people skills.
Review the job listing again and tailor your approach here. What is your prospective employer looking for? Choose from among the listed skills when you develop this CV section. Use higher level attributes that will distinguish you from other candidates whenever possible.
Brainstorm a list of all your skills and attributes. Don’t be choosy. Instead put down everything you think of. This is your “Master List.” When you compile your structural engineering resume, you can choose the skills that best match the position you want. Add to your master list as your career grows.
Below you will find an adaptable skills resume example.
- Strong Critical Thinking Skills
- Structural Analysis
- Decision Making Skills
- Risk Analysis
- Reliability analysis
- Construction Management
Structural engineer resume education example
The education section is one of the most essential components of your resume as becoming a structural engineer requires a bachelor’s degree in civil or architectural engineering with an emphasis on structural engineering. Some states require working for two to five years under a registered professional engineer with structural experience and passage of a professional engineer’s exam.
Some engineers also earn master’s degrees or have certificates in computer-aided design (CAD) or drafting. In your education section, you should list all your degrees and qualifications. If you have just graduated, you may consider adding your GPA if it is 3.0 or above. Along those lines, you may move this section up if you have limited work experience and you want to highlight your education.
Below you will find an education resume example as a formatting guide.
- 2000-2004 Boston University, Master of Civil Engineering Boston, MA
- 1995-1999 Boston College, Bachelor of Structural Engineering Boston, MA
Resume layout and design: your shop drawing
Your diagrams are precision documents. Your resume should be one too. The visual impression you make counts, especially since your work life revolves partly around your ability to communicate visually.
Make a professional statement with your layout by keeping it neat and readable. Leave ample margins and vary your line lengths to create white space. Too much text makes your application hard to read. Along those lines, use section headings as graphic elements. You want recruiters to easily be able to find you to schedule your interview, so make sure your contact information stands out.
Your page layout speaks volumes about your experience and professionalism. If you want to be sure you've created a great layout, consider using an expertly-designed resume template.
Key takeaways for a structural engineer resume
- Use your resume to show off your structured, yet creative, critical thinking abilities.
- Make the most of your specialization.
- Take the ATS algorithms into account as you personalize your resume for each job.
- Check out our structural engineer resume sample for more ideas on creating a great header.