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Should Engineers Aim for Management? Reasons and merits for managerial positions, differences from professional positions

In today’s digitalized society, engineers are indispensable. There are always many jobs for engineers, and you can choose a job if you have technical skills. However, since the required roles change at a certain age, many people worry about their career plans as to whether they should proceed to a managerial or professional position.

Here, we will explain why engineers are required to be in management positions and the specific differences from professional jobs.

>> What is engineer management? Explanation of necessary skills and learning methods

Should engineers become managers?

Many people think that they want to be programming all the time because they have become engineers.

Why Engineer Managers Are Needed

Engineers need specialized knowledge and skills, but they cannot proceed with a project alone. To carry out a project, it is necessary to cooperate with multiple members, and communication skills are important at that time.

However, as you gain experience, you will come to see not only communication skills but also tips for efficiently proceeding with projects. Also, when you become a veteran to some extent, you will have more opportunities to teach new engineers. It is said that around the age of 35, people reach a state in which they have accumulated sufficient skills and knowledge to promote a project.

As a company, we want to lead a large number of people to accomplish a larger project, so we need engineers in managerial positions to promote projects.

There is also a career path for specialists (experts)

If you become a manager, you will naturally have more responsibilities, so there are quite a few people who say, “I don’t want to be a manager, I want to continue to improve my skills as an expert.” For those who have craftsmanship that feels rewarding, joyful, and happy in pursuing technology, and those who feel that they are not good at managing members and training subordinates, continuing to work as a professional is one of the options.

However, if you can manage the project, you can proceed with the project in your way to some extent, and you can expect a significant increase in annual income.

If you are wondering whether you should be a manager or a specialist, why not consider the criteria below?

・Do you have the confidence to keep up with the speed of technological evolution?

・Will you can continue to work with enthusiasm in the future?

・Is the company’s evaluation justified?

If you can confidently answer “yes” to these questions, then it might be a good idea to aim for a professional career.

Difference between managerial and professional engineering


Compare and contrast the differences between management and professionals.

Differences in work content

The main job of managers is project progress management, quality control, and training of members, but the main job of professionals is to promote projects using more advanced specialized knowledge and skills. is. In other words, the skills required for managerial and professional positions are different. Managerial positions, which require different skills from system construction, have a wider range of work than specialists.

Differences in career plans

Career plans differ greatly between managers and professionals. Managerial career plans include project managers, consultants, and IT architects, while professional careers include IT specialists, full-stack engineers, and freelance engineers.

Benefits for managers

There is no such thing as “which is better” between a managerial position and a professional position, but if you gain experience as a manager, you will be able to work from a perspective closer to that of management.

On the other hand, the advantage of being a professional is that you can thoroughly master the technology. It is up to you to decide which path you want to pursue, but it is important to consider your future career plan when making your choice.

Engineer manager job description

There is an image that seems to be difficult when you hear the management position, but what kind of work do you do?

What is Project progress management?

The scope of management varies depending on the position of the manager, but project schedules and team schedules are always managed. As a project manager, you must consistently manage the project from launch to completion and ensure that progress is made according to the schedule. In that case, progress management with an awareness of QCD is required.

<What is QCD?>




Customer negotiation

Managers clearly understand the needs of customers and reflect them in system development. In that case, you must stand between the customer and the member and negotiate and coordinate in a way that both parties can agree on. Therefore, “skills related to human relations” that are different from technical skills are required.

member development

Managers are responsible for tasks that one person cannot handle alone. You are required to assign work to members and proceed with the project as a team. Developing team members is therefore a factor in making work more efficient.

Skills required for engineering management

There are four main skills required for a managerial position as an engineer.

1. Management skills

2. Communication skills, leadership

3. Technical skills

4. Problem-solving ability, decisiveness

management skills

Most of the work of managers is management such as schedule management, cost management, and quality control. Management skills are also required to manage the progress of the project and allocate work appropriately.

communication skills, leadership

Good communication skills are essential to understanding customer needs. In addition, skills such as negotiating and coordinating with customers, building systems appropriately, and leadership to lead members are also required.

What are technical skills?

Just because you’re a manager doesn’t mean you don’t need technical skills. Appropriate project management requires technical skills as an engineer, such as knowledge about various products and the technical ability to solve the issues of members. In addition, technical knowledge is essential to grasp the needs of customers.

problem-solving ability, decisiveness

Successful management requires problem-solving and decision-making skills. As the project progresses, some problems will occur, so managers must take appropriate measures to deal with the problems that have occurred.

Also, in that case, there are many situations where you have to choose one from multiple options, and judgment and decision-making based on logic are also important.

Management position of engineers by industry and type


In a nutshell, the characteristics of a managerial position vary depending on the industry and type. Here, we will introduce the role of managers in each industry.

IT venture system

At IT ventures and SMEs, many people become managers in their 20s. This is partly because of the lack of human resources, but partly because the average age of the company as a whole is young. Therefore, it is possible to gain experience as a manager from an early stage.

system engineer

In Japan, there are many SIers with multiple contracts, and the way they should be will change depending on what position you are in. However, since the number of people involved in management positions, such as customers and cooperating companies, is very large, it is possible to gain experience negotiating not only with people within the company but also with people from various companies.

Web system

The web industry is an industry with a high job-change rate, as many engineers have been kicked up. Even if you say web-related in one word, there is a wide range of types from designers to engineers, so the knowledge and skills required are also wide. However, if you acquire the skills of a manager, you can also work freely as a freelancer.


In general, it is said that engineers should become managers after the age of 35, but it is also possible to choose a career plan as a specialist if desired. In recent years, “playing managers,” who manage while in charge of actual work, are also attracting attention. Therefore, make sure to carefully consider your future career plan before choosing a managerial position or a professional position.

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