When it comes to running a smooth operation, whether in real life, online, or in a mobile app, lead engineers are instrumental in designing operating systems and procedures that can cope with any scenario. A central part of any product team, the lead engineer drives innovation at the heart of any process improvement project or start-up.
Much of a lead engineer’s work is hidden, but their battles are real. When a finished product or service comes to market, many of the issues that have been overcome will be swept under the carpet, but the career of a lead engineer is about mitigating risk and handling every obstacle along the development path. The lead engineer CV should revel in their ability to handle any issue that comes their way.
At Resume.io, we hope to assist in your search for your next lead engineer role. Our 65+ CV examples and expert-backed writing guides should guide you as you plot your next moves. Our CV and cover letter templates should cover any personal preference in terms of design.
In this CV guide and lead engineer example, we hope to cover the following:
- What should a lead engineer share on their CV
- How to compose a lead engineer CV (with example)
- Choose the right format for a lead engineer CV
- Advice for each section (summary, work history, education, skills)
- How to design a CV with mistakes to avoid
Lead engineers understand the importance of a well-thought-out plan. Take your time over how you set out your CV — it is the foundation of a successful job search.
What does a lead engineer do?
Lead engineers work in many different industries. The example CV below offers the example of a lead engineer in a retail environment, but the title encompasses software, technical and mechanical engineering responsibilities.
- Preside over the design, test and build phases with project teams.
- Work with analysts and operational teams during the engineering process.
- Support developers and architects to manage product and service roadmaps.
- Bear in mind business continuity and development requirements.
- Serve as an escalation point for operational performance issues.
- Ensure all compliance and quality requirements are observed.
Lead engineers should be logical and strategic thinkers, with an eye on what is coming multiple years down the line. Make sure that your CV has a proactive thread running through it. You are there to anticipate issues rather than to react to them. Have a look at our CV example below:
According to Payscale the average salary for a lead engineer in the UK is £59,254. If the role is with a start-up or large tech company, then this may be significantly more.
There are also many interim and consulting roles, as you may not be looking for a permanent position. The median day rate for a lead engineer contractor role is £700 — there is some lucrative work to be had out there for talented professionals. You will obviously still require a stellar CV for a consulting role.
While writing operational processes or software protocols might be your thing, your lead engineer CV could be the most important thing that you write this year.
How to write a lead engineer CV
Every lead engineer CV should be structured in the same way:
- CV header
- CV summary (or personal statement)
- Employment history section
- CV skills section
- Education section
There is a certain way to tell a career story that every hiring manager will expect when opening the document, so much as you might wish to come up with an impressive piece of software to demonstrate your prowess at the same time as telling your career story, stick with the tried-and-tested. By all means, link to a portfolio of your projects, but stick to the PDF or Word format for your CV. You’ll have the chance to stand out at the interview.
Every lead engineer will understand the impact of an efficient algorithm on a process, but sadly some recruitment algorithms within an ATS system are less than perfect. Most companies will attempt to ensure that every CV reaches a human eye, but not all will want their people to sift through hundreds of applications.
An Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) helps the employer to manage the volumes of applications, so ensure your CV includes enough of the required keywords and matches the demands of the job description.
It is worth thinking about how much you wish to match your CV for each role. While you will certainly have a long list of proud achievements, some of them may not be suited to your future activities. Most of your CV should be as relevant as possible for the role.
Looking for some extra inspiration? Check out our engineering resume writing guides below.
Choosing the best CV format for a lead engineer CV
The format for a lead engineer CV should ideally follow a reverse chronological format with the last role at the top of the page. If you have a consultancy role with multiple clients at any one time, you may wish to opt for a functional CV that focuses on your core competencies, but you will still need to provide a list of the clients that you have worked for with dates.
People process information visually, so make sure that the first page of your CV contains the most important information about your application. Often this is your most recent employers and projects. Use bullet points to save space and create an impact. Check out the layout options in our guide or look at our CV sample.
CV summary example
The summary of a lead engineer CV should offer an example of your most impactful project as an indication of what you can achieve with your next employer. Let them know the extent of your project management experience and some details of your technical prowess. Mentioning a rare technical skill in this section will make them sit up and pay attention.
If you are looking to change industries or move from a consulting to a permanent role, the summary can also include an objective for your next career move. It isn’t always the case that your previous activity is going to lead smoothly onto your next move. Have a look at our summary CV example.
Solutions-focused lead engineer with extensive experience in overseeing development and implementation of ecommerce architecture using cloud native technlogies. Excel at coordinating with business users, product teams, and engineers to ensure timely delivery and prompt resolution of issues. Passion for incoporating emerging techniques and practices to create a modern, scalable technology ecosystem that results in high user adopt rates.
Employment history sample
While your projects should form the backbone of your lead engineer CV, the hiring manager needs to get a sense of how you solve problems and influence those around you. Making engineering decisions is rarely simple, so how do you build consensus and get others on board with your ideas? Offer some examples of improbable projects that went well.
While your CV should not contain a long list of your technical skills, make sure that you include some of your rarer knowhow so that you make the hiring manager wonder what else you can do for them. They understand that a CV cannot contain all of your accomplishments, so leave them wanting to hear more.
Lead Engineer, Accenture, London, UK
October 2020 - Present
- Consult with clients, DevOps, and business analysts to understand requirements and develop innovative Salesforce and AWS solutions.
- Assist in planning and execution of migration from on-premises environment to hosted cloud data centre.
- Streamline delivery using Jenkins to manage continuous integration/continuous deployment (CI/CD).
- Collaborate with team to implement microservices architecture to reduce application development time.
Software Engineer, Tata Consultancy Services, London, UK
May 2017 - October 2020
- Developed new customer onboarding process using AWS functions, API gateway, DynamoDB, and Node.js.
- Configured, refined, and implemented numerous cloud-based applications, platforms, and databases.
- Automated routine processes by writing Python scripts and using built-in Salesforce tools to increase efficiency.
CV skills example
The skills section is particularly important for a lead engineer as the hiring manager’s eyes will be drawn there to see the potential fit with the role. Make sure that you stick to the technical and hard skills in this section. Keep a mix of the common skills that are expected and a few that truly set you apart from the competition.
- Cloud Native Technologies
- PaaS & SaaS Solutions
- Amazon AWS
- Mobile Platforms
- Agile Project Management
- Team Leadership
- Requirements Analysis
Lead engineer CV education example
A university or college education is essential to include on a lead engineer’s CV, but you should also consider any other technical qualifications that may be essential to the role. Continuing education is essential, so emphasizing continuous professional development in this section is a good way to show that you are always seeking to develop.
University of London, Master of Science in Computer Science, London, UK
September 2015 - June 2017
Imperial College London, Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering, London, UK
September 2010 - June 2015
CV layout and design
Most lead engineers will appreciate the need for a solid design, but don’t be too creative when it comes to the look of your CV. As mentioned earlier, the aim of a CV is to tell your career story, not show off your technical ability. Keep the fancy software tricks for your professional portfolio and choose a solid and professional design for your CV. Keep it monotone and visually simple. Here are some of our CV templates.
- Your list of engineering achievements is not enough to impress an employer. Talk about how you got there and worked with others to make it happen.
- Make sure that your lead engineer CV fits the job description.
- Use bullet points to give maximal space to your individual achievements.
- Select a professional template that will serve to showcase your career story.