Choosing an MBA program for Engineers – how to CLARIFY your priorities

Course: Specialist MBA for Engineers

This is a detailed look at one of the first elements of our unique CLARIFY headings, enabling you to focus exclusively on MBA programs that meet all your personal needs!

We outline here aspects of the specialist MBA for engineers. Look elsewhere on this site to consider in broad terms the relative merits of generalised or specialised provision, full-time or part-time study.

What relevance does an MBA have to the highly technical skills of a professional engineer, and is there a need for an MBA specifically for Engineers?

Broadening your skills

As an engineer, you must widen your knowledge and skills in management areas if you wish to become an effective senior manager in manufacturing industry. Following your technical degree, an MBA can complete your education in areas such as finance, marketing, human resource management, lean operations and management strategy. With this background, you should have the opportunity to progress quickly in your career, usually through fast-track promotion into very senior management posts.

In the rapidly changing world of industrial production, the engineer is likely to be the manager who has to implement new practices and new technology. In this role, you are likely to be the primary instigator of change in your organisation and for this you need specific skills and knowledge.

A postgraduate qualification will be of ever greater importance for engineers in the future. In the UK, for example, the Engineering Council and the various professional bodies require that to attain Chartered Engineer status (CEng), the graduate engineer must have studied to MEng level through an accredited degree route or alternatively studied a 'Matching Section' (equivalent to an MEng) through postgraduate study. One of the requirements of this 'matching section' is in the area of management.

One way of attaining the required management skills is through study on a Master of Business Administration (MBA) program. Most MBA courses are aimed at all graduate disciplines, although a few universities offer a technical program.

Looking ahead

Relevant work experience is usually essential before starting an MBA program. Sharing this experience in seminar classes is one of the benefits of studying on an MBA. Additionally, assignments often require you to relate theory to the world of work by using your own company as a case study. You therefore have the opportunity to understand the workings of the company in greater depth, in areas not usually covered in your engineering role. The company can also benefit from this work through your assignment output.

You may, for example, consider how to improve the supply chain for particular products in your company, or develop a marketing strategy for the launch of a new product.

Having an MBA will enable you to enhance your technical engineering abilities with management knowledge, skills and techniques, and to have the confidence to apply them to develop strategies for growth.

Don’t stop now…

We have considered here some of the key issues in determining whether a specialist MBA is the right program for you. Continue to CLARIFY your MBA objectives by working through all the CLARIFY links to identify the best routes to achieving your MBA:


You can proceed in any order you like and take as long as you need to explore each area thoroughly.



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