Hardware engineers and designers are basically the same groups of people and 99% of the population makes no difference between them. This is because two employees in a hardware company that are working on design and engineering had the same education and qualification before hiring. They probably have a similar experience but when a special request comes upon them, one must be the designer and the other a regular engineer. Read this interesting article on how hard these jobs are.
A lot of people are now saying – okay, so you’re saying it’s not the same, now tell us where the difference is. Hold your horses, we’re just about to do it. Read on and find out!
What is the difference between hardware engineers and designers?
Even though, as we said, these are the same people, there is a difference and it can be acquired over the years working on different projects. There’s no different school for the two and you can’t get employed as a specialist in hardware design, but over time, you get to see the difference.
What are hardware engineers?
Hardware engineers are people who are responsible and capable of creating the hardware as a piece. They create it and make sure it works. For example, if the task is creating a simple cooler, the hardware engineer is supposed to do all the preparation and execute the final product. When connected to the electrical power, it must blow wind and cool the surroundings. That’s it, the engineer did their job.
What are hardware designers?
The best definition, and compared to the previous paragraph is: a person who has an idea, turns it into reality, and makes sure it works together with the rest of the parts.
It means that the hardware designer is the person who’s not only responsible for making the cooler we mentioned before, but it is the person who makes sure the specific cooler can fit in the box with the other parts, knows what kind of needs the other engineers have from the cooler, and makes sure the cooler does its job and keeps the temperature on a low level so the other parts work perfectly.
In a way, this person has more obligations and more responsibilities. They need to keep an extra eye on everything that happens around. They need to create a product that will be able to work in different surroundings or at least test the product so they know in what surrounding it is able to work at all. Take a look of an example here: https://www.softeq.com/services/hardware_design
What makes them special?
Not every regular hardware engineer can become a hardware designer. It takes a lot of experience, skill, but also knowledge in different areas of both the tech world and management with all accompanying branches working for and with the hardware engineers.
With this being said, you should know that not everyone is qualified for the position. Moreover, very few can deal with the stress and the obligations coming from it. You can say that there’s no special education for this position. You are either capable or skilled or you have to admit that you’re not up for the task.
This is why designers actually usually make more than standard engineers. Because they work more, have more knowledge, and they are able to be multitasking in every second of the working day. Every serious company working in the field saves no money to find themselves the best person the market can offer at the moment. If you’re about to become one someday, we can say go for it. You’re not making a mistake.
Just like everything in life – you can’t settle once you feel okay. You always must work more and try to achieve different and higher goals. It’s the same here. You must learn more as you go along the way and you must be able to adapt and interfere perfectly in other people’s business. If you’re willing to learn right now, jump here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Softeq
When we say interfere, we don’t mean in a bad way, of course. Interfering by giving and receiving information about the work. If you manage to find the perfect balance and be helpful – then you’re ready to become a hardware designer.