Careers rarely develop the way we plan them. Our career path often takes many twists and turns, with particular events, choices and people influencing our direction.

We asked Angie O'Keeffe from Hewlett-Packard to give some advice for people considering this job:

 

Angie O'Keeffe

Materials Engineer

Hewlett-Packard

Read more...

  Angie O'Keeffe
Don't be afraid to speak out, but have your data to support your argument. Good problem solving skills will help but you don't have to be an expert in every area but get to the people who do know. Most people love to transfer their knowledge especially when the request for information is genuine. Your own interest level will determine the kind of response you get, you'll build your networks this way. Get your hands dirty, never think that some part of the job is below you, you'll get two invaluable things from this - knowledge, you'll learn things that others would overlook and you'll have a better understanding of processes and your products
Close

Realist?
Realist 
Realists are usually interested in 'things' - such as buildings, mechanics, equipment, tools, electronics etc. Their primary focus is dealing with these - as in building, fixing, operating or designing them. Involvement in these areas leads to high manual skills, or a fine aptitude for practical design - as found in the various forms of engineering.

Realists like to find practical solutions to problems using tools, technology and skilled work. Realists usually prefer to be active in their work environment, often do most of their work alone, and enjoy taking decisive action with a minimum amount of discussion and paperwork.

DIT 
St. Patrick's College, Thurles 
Setanta College 
Dundalk IT 
Occupation Details
logo imagelogo image

Engineer - Computer Hardware

Job Zone

Education
Most of these occupations require qualifications at NFQ Levels 7 or 8 (Ordinary / Honours Degrees) but some do not.

Related Experience
A considerable amount of work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is needed for these occupations. For example, an engineer must complete four years of college and work for several years in engineering to be considered qualified.

Job Training
Employees in these occupations usually need several years of work-related experience, on-the-job training, and/or vocational training.

Job Zone Examples
Many of these occupations involve coordinating, supervising, managing, or training others. Examples include accountants, sales managers, computer programmers, teachers, chemists, environmental engineers, criminal investigators, and financial analysts.

€25k >  
Computer Hardware Engineer
Salary Range
(thousands per year)*
€25 -  
Related Information:
Data Source(s):
FAS

Last Updated: March, 2013

* The lower figures typically reflect starting salaries. Higher salaries are awarded to those with greater experience and responsibility. Positions in Dublin sometimes command higher salaries.
Return to List
Saves this course to your Career File if you are registered.
At a Glance... header image

Computer hardware engineers work with the mechanical, electrical and electronic parts of computers. They design and develop computers, computer components and the computerised parts of other appliances.


The Work header image

Most computers are made by linking microprocessor chips, components and equipment together to form a system. The design process may begin with the computer systems analyst providing an outline specification for a computer system to meet a particular need. A team of logic designers works on the initial logic design to produce detailed specifications. They translate the ideas into detailed drawings and circuit diagrams.

A team of hardware engineers take the design, and build and test a prototype or working model. They buy the computer chips, assemble the hardware components and build the necessary interfacing equipment. They test the prototype to make sure it meets the specification requirements; they carry out any necessary modifications to the design.

 


Tasks & Activitiesheader image

The following is a list of the most commonly reported tasks and activities for this occupation

bullet

Update knowledge and skills to keep up with rapid advancements in computer technology.

bullet

Build, test, and modify product prototypes using working models or theoretical models constructed with computer simulation.

bullet

Write detailed functional specifications that document the hardware development process and support hardware introduction.

bullet

Specify power supply requirements and configuration, drawing on system performance expectations and design specifications.

bullet

Confer with engineering staff and consult specifications to evaluate interface between hardware and software and operational and performance requirements of overall system.

bullet

Design and develop computer hardware and support peripherals, including central processing units (CPUs), support logic, microprocessors, custom integrated circuits, and printers and disk drives.

bullet

Select hardware and material, assuring compliance with specifications and product requirements.

bullet

Monitor functioning of equipment and make necessary modifications to ensure system operates in conformance with specifications.

bullet

Test and verify hardware and support peripherals to ensure that they meet specifications and requirements, by recording and analyzing test data.

bullet

Direct technicians, engineering designers or other technical support personnel as needed.

Work Activities header image

The following is a list of the most commonly reported Work Activities in this occupation.

bullet

Thinking Creatively:  Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.

bullet

Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge:  Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.

bullet

Processing Information:  Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.

bullet

Drafting, Laying Out, and Specifying Technical Devices, Parts, and Equipment:  Providing documentation, detailed instructions, drawings, or specifications to tell others about how devices, parts, equipment, or structures are to be fabricated, constructed, assembled, modified, maintained, or used.

bullet

Interacting With Computers:  Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.

bullet

Getting Information:  Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.

bullet

Repairing and Maintaining Electronic Equipment:  Servicing, repairing, calibrating, regulating, fine-tuning, or testing machines, devices, and equipment that operate primarily on the basis of electrical or electronic (not mechanical) principles.

bullet

Analyzing Data or Information:  Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.

bullet

Making Decisions and Solving Problems:  Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.

bullet

Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others:  Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.


Knowledge header image

The following is a list of the five most commonly reported Knowledge areas for this occupation.

bullet

Engineering and Technology:  Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.

bullet

Computers and Electronics:  Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.

bullet

Design:  Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.

bullet

Mathematics:  Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.

bullet

Physics:  Knowledge and prediction of physical principles, laws, their interrelationships, and applications to understanding fluid, material, and atmospheric dynamics, and mechanical, electrical, atomic and sub- atomic structures and processes.


Skillsheader image

The following is a list of the most commonly reported skills used in this occupation.

bullet

Reading Comprehension:   Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

bullet

Complex Problem Solving:   Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.

bullet

Systems Evaluation:   Identifying measures or indicators of system performance and the actions needed to improve or correct performance, relative to the goals of the system.

bullet

Writing:   Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

bullet

Critical Thinking:   Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

bullet

Operations Analysis:   Analyzing needs and product requirements to create a design.

bullet

Active Learning:   Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.

bullet

Speaking:   Talking to others to convey information effectively.

bullet

Instructing:   Teaching others how to do something.

bullet

Judgment and Decision Making:   Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Personal Qualitiesheader image

To be a computer hardware engineer, you need strong technical knowledge of computers and electronic systems. You must have a flair for turning system requirements into detailed designs. You need to be able to work to deadlines and budgets; you may also need to consider the cost and availability of components.

Computer hardware engineers must be able to work as part of multi-disciplinary teams; you must have strong oral and written communication skills. You need to be able to explain complex information to others and give clear instructions.

This job requires good eyesight and normal colour vision, as you may be dealing with electrical wiring.

A willingness to learn and develop your knowledge is also important as the technology and industry is constantly changing and improving and you will need to keep up-to-date with latest developments.


Further Informationheader image

A detailed description of this occupation can be found on a number of online databases. Follow the link(s) below to access this information:

Note: you will be leaving the CareersPortal Site

Go..   Computer Hardware Engineer - from:  YouTube Video

Contactsheader image

bullet

Organisation: Irish Computer Society
  Address: 87-89 Pembroke Road, Dublin 4
  Tel: (01) 644 7820
  Email: info@ics.ie
  Url www.ics.ie
   

 

Job Search


Career Guidance

This occupation is popular with people who have the following Career Interests...

Investigative  Realist  Administrative 

...and for people who like working in the following Career Sectors:

Computers & Software
Electrical & Electronic Engineering

Search for Related Courses from Qualifax - the National Learners Database

Go..


CAO Course suggestions
If you are interested in this occupation, then the following CAO / HETAC courses may also be of interest. Note that these course suggestions are not intended to indicate that they lead directly to this occupation, only that they are related in some way and may be worth exploring.
Courses found: 158
Applied Computing
Letterkenny IT
Applied Computing
Waterford IT
Applied Physics
University of Limerick
Arts (subject option: Applied Mathematics)
UCC (NUI)
Arts (subject option: Computer Science)
NUI Maynooth
Arts (subject option: Computer Science)
UCC (NUI)
Arts (subject option: Information Technology)
NUI Galway
Arts (subject option: Mathematical Physics)
NUI Maynooth
Arts (subject option: Mathematics)
TCD
Arts (subject option: Mathematics)
UCC (NUI)
Automation Engineering
DIT
Business and Information Technology
IT Blanchardstown
Business Computing
DIT
Business Computing and Digital Media
GMIT - Galway-Mayo IT
Business Information Systems
NCI
Business Information Systems
NUI Galway
Business Information Systems
Dublin Business School
Business Information Systems
Dublin Business School
Business Information Systems
UCC (NUI)
Business Information Systems (Cloud Computing)
Dublin Business School
Business Technology (Information Systems)
Limerick IT
Business Technology (Management)
Limerick IT
Common Entry to Computer, Electronic and Communications Engineering
NUI Maynooth
Communications in Creative Media
Dundalk IT
Computational Problem solving and Software Development
DCU
Computational Thinking
NUI Maynooth
Computer and Communications Engineering
DIT
Computer and Electronic Engineering
GMIT - Galway-Mayo IT
Computer and Energy Systems
GMIT - Galway-Mayo IT
Computer Applications
DCU
Computer Engineering
IT Blanchardstown
Computer Engineering
Letterkenny IT
Computer Engineering in Mobile Systems
IT Blanchardstown
Computer Forensics & Security
Waterford IT
Computer Games Development
Letterkenny IT
Computer Games Development
IT Carlow
Computer Games Technology
Griffith College. Dublin
Computer Networks and Systems Management
Limerick IT
Computer Science
UCD (NUI)
Computer Science
TCD
Computer Science
DIT
Computer Science
UCC (NUI)
Computer Science (International)
DIT
Computer Science and Business
TCD
Computer Science and Information Technology
NUI Galway
Computer Science and Language
TCD
Computer Science and Software Engineering
NUI Maynooth
Computer Science and Software Engineering (Arts Entry)
NUI Maynooth
Computer Security and Digital Forensics
Letterkenny IT
Computer Services
Limerick IT
Computer Services Management (Thurles)
Limerick IT
Computer Systems
University of Limerick
Computer Systems Management
IT Carlow
Computing
Cork Institute of Technology
Computing
Limerick IT
Computing
IT Tallaght
Computing
IT Tallaght
Computing
Griffith College. Dublin
Computing
Dundalk IT
Computing
NCI
Computing
DIT
Computing
Griffith College. Dublin
Computing
Griffith College. Limerick
Computing
Griffith College. Limerick
Computing & Multimedia
Dorset College
Computing & Multimedia
Dorset College
Computing & Multimedia
Dorset College
Computing (Applications, Commercial Programming or Networking)
IT Carlow
Computing (incorporating 3 award options)
Dundalk IT
Computing (Information Technology)
IT Blanchardstown
Computing (Information Technology)
IT Blanchardstown
Computing (Information Technology)
IT Blanchardstown
Computing (Thurles)
Limerick IT
Computing - Games Design and Development (Thurles)
Limerick IT
Computing - Games Development
IT Sligo
Computing - Software Development
IT Sligo
Computing - Systems and Networking
IT Sligo
Computing for Business
Athlone IT
Computing In Applications and Support
NCI
Computing in Games Development
Dundalk IT
Computing in Information Technology
College of Computer Training
Computing in Information Technology
College of Computer Training
Computing in Information Technology Support
Letterkenny IT
Computing in Multimedia Programming
Dun Laoghaire IADT
Computing in Software Development
GMIT - Galway-Mayo IT
Computing Science
Griffith College. Limerick
Computing Science
Griffith College. Cork
Computing Science
Griffith College. Dublin
Computing Science (Cloud Computing)
Griffith College. Dublin
Computing Science (Games Development)
Griffith College. Dublin
Computing Science (Network Management)
Griffith College. Dublin
Computing Science (Software Development)
Griffith College. Dublin
Computing with Cloud and Green Information Technology
Letterkenny IT
Computing with French
Dundalk IT
Computing with Games Development
Tralee IT
Computing with Games Development
Tralee IT
Computing with Multimedia
Tralee IT
Computing with Multimedia
Tralee IT
Computing with Software Development
Tralee IT
Computing with Software Development
Tralee IT
Creative Multimedia (Clonmel)
Limerick IT
Creative Multimedia (Clonmel)
Limerick IT
Digital Animation Production (Clonmel)
Limerick IT
Digital Forensics and Cyber Security
IT Blanchardstown
Digital Media Engineering
DCU
eBusiness Management Systems
Limerick IT
Electronic and Computer Engineering
University of Limerick
Electronic and Computing Engineering
NUI Galway
Electronic Engineering with Communications
NUI Maynooth
Electronic Engineering with Computers
NUI Maynooth
Electronic Systems Engineering
Cork Institute of Technology
Electronics
Letterkenny IT
Electronics and Communications Engineering
DIT
Electronics and Computer Engineering
Athlone IT
Electronics and Computer Engineering
IT Blanchardstown
Energy Systems and Automation Engineering
GMIT - Galway-Mayo IT
Engineering Informatics (Common Entry)
Athlone IT
Enterprise Computing
DCU
Entertainment Systems
Waterford IT
Health Informatics
University of Limerick
Information Systems Management
GMIT - Galway-Mayo IT
Information Systems Management
Tralee IT
Information Technology
College of Computer Training
Information Technology
IT Tallaght
Information Technology
Waterford IT
Information Technology - Distance Learning
DCU
Information Technology Management
IT Tallaght
Information Technology Management
IT Tallaght
Information Technology Support
Cork Institute of Technology
Information Technology Support - Castlebar
GMIT - Galway-Mayo IT
Interactive Applications Design and Development
Dundalk IT
Internet Systems Development
Limerick IT
Internet Systems Development
Limerick IT
IT Management
Cork Institute of Technology
Management of Business Information
Limerick City College
Management of Information Systems
Limerick City College
Management of IT & IS - Distance Learning
DCU
Management of Technology in Business
NCI
Management Science and Information Systems Studies
TCD
Mathematical Sciences
University of Limerick
Mathematical Sciences
DIT
Mathematical Sciences
UCC (NUI)
Mathematics
TCD
Mathematics
NUI Maynooth
Mathematics and Physics
University of Limerick
Mobile Communications and Security
University of Limerick
Networking Technologies
DIT
Smart Technology for Business
Athlone IT
Software Design & Development
Limerick IT
Software Development
Limerick IT
Software Development
IT Carlow
Software Development
Cork Institute of Technology
Software Development
IT Carlow
Software Development and Computer Networking
Cork Institute of Technology
Software Systems Development
Waterford IT
Theoretical Physics
TCD
Theoretical Physics and Mathematics
NUI Maynooth
Web Development
Cork Institute of Technology