A manufacturing engineer is responsible for designing, operating, and integrating complex systems used to manufacture factory products, including machining, robotics, and materials handling. When interviewed for a manufacturing engineer position, you will likely be asked questions that measure your technical skills, business sense, and operational knowledge of manufacturing processes. Here are the top 25 manufacturing engineering questions and answers which may help you during an interview.
1. Tell Us About Yourself
I was in the administration department at my previous job, handling scheduling, meetings, and travel for four executives and 20 employees. I used to prepare correspondence, presentations, and reports for clients.
I consider myself a good communicator, detail-oriented, and able to juggle multiple tasks simultaneously. I am known to be a highly organized team player. In my performance reviews, my supervisor recognizes my professionalism and enthusiasm.
My experience has prepared me well for the next step in my career. I want to do so in a company like yours that works to improve the environment, which I’m passionate about.
2. Why Are You Interested In This Role?
My desire to contribute to manufacturing processes makes me interested in this role. As a highly analytical thinker with good troubleshooting skills, I am passionate about this job because I have extensive experience evaluating, developing, and improving manufacturing systems and products.
3. Which Biggest Strength Of You Makes You Stand Out Of The Crowd?
I consider myself passionate and hardworking. A few of my strengths include the following:
- Communicating well is one of my strengths.
- I have a great ability to reason analytically.
- Knowledge of mathematics and statistics.
- Work with the latest manufacturing technologies with ease.
- Focused, disciplined, and good at paying attention to details.
- I am a great team player
- I am good at collaborating.
4. Why Did You Choose Manufacturing Engineering?
When I point to a product, I can say, “That’s what I did.” I want to participate in the growth of the manufacturing industry. I want to work in different fields and countries to create products people use. I am passionate about technology and automation.
5. What Major Challenges/Issues Did You Face During Your Last Role? How Did You Manage Them?
Dealing with staff who are reluctant to change was the biggest challenge. It was not an easy change for them for a reason. Finding these reasons and knowing how to address them made working together easier. But things went smoothly after, as I learned a lot from my experience and skills.
6. How Do You Keep Yourself Updated With Manufacturing Engineering Trends?
I keep myself up to date with the latest trends by following the steps.
- By reading manufacturing and engineering books
- I read manufacturing blogs
- Following authors and influencers in the industry
- Networking with fellow peers
7. Explain Your Daily Routine As A Manufacturing Engineer.
I normally meet with the production management team in the morning to discuss any job-related issues since the last day. The next step is to walk around the plant and talk to other colleagues about the process we are using to get their input. I spend most of the day designing new things to improve our processes and equipment. My other duties include attending management meetings, handling administrative tasks, and interacting with vendors.
8. Tell Us About A Time When You Failed In This Role And The Lesson You Learnt?
As a manufacturing engineer, I knew I was responsible for maintaining and ensuring quality issues during production during my first year in this field. Despite not knowing how to fix the problem at the time, I maintained a professional attitude and pretended to be investigating. I did not accept that I could handle it until later in the evening when I sought assistance. This issue taught me the importance of teamwork. The senior engineer discovered a safety sensor had failed, which was why the line was down. We began the backup, and production resumed.
9. Why Do You Think You Are The Most Suited For This Role?
As well as holding a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering, I possess strong analytical skills, technical expertise, and management and organizational skills. During my two years, I gained lots of experience and knowledge in CAM, CAD, data analysis, and related software. You can count on me as a valuable asset to your company, particularly in evaluating manufacturing processes and machinery.
10. What Do You Think Can Be The Benefits And Limitations Of Six Sigma? Why Is It Important To Be Six Sigma Certified?
Benefits: Reduced manufacturing waste, higher quality, customer satisfaction, improved productivity, higher profits, and lower costs.
Limitations include less space for creativity, increased bureaucracy, and it’s quite hard to implement in small companies.
Six Sigma is a data-driven approach to eliminating defects in any manufacturing process, transactional process, or product-to-service. I am a certified professional as a black belt in the process. As a result, I can improve processes based on my information.
11. Do You Have Experience Using Kanban?
I remember I have used it in the past. It is a scheduling system that helps manufacturers decide what to produce, when, and how much to produce. It is a good system because it keeps track of manufacturing components and supplies. A single application also provides the necessary information for the production team to perform.
12. How Would You Reduce Waste In Manufacturing?
You can reduce the waste in manufacturing if you follow the below-mentioned steps.
- By using six Sigma, lean, kaizen, or JIT manufacturing methods.
- Transport, inventory, motion, waiting, overproduction, overprocessing, and defects are the seven types of waste to be reduced.
- Human resources should be scheduled and used correctly.
- Physical space can be better utilized.
13. How Can You Ensure Quality In An Organization?
Some of the quality measurements are as under.
- Customer Focus: Everything an organization must comprise of the customer’s needs as its starting point. In my work, the “customer” is the target population or the community that will benefit from what I am offering or doing. What are the needs to which I am responding? How can I meet those needs effectively, appropriately, and respectfully for the people I am planning to serve?
- Quality Obsession: Quality needs to be considered from the beginning and built into everything a business or organization does. Planning carefully, monitoring my work, and constant reevaluation and adjustment are all extremely important. I don’t ensure quality by catching mistakes before they reach the customer; I ensure it by setting up a system where I’m not particularly eager to make mistakes. Everyone in an organization must adopt and understand this point of view if the organization is truly going to have quality performance.
- Continual Improvement in Systems: Organization’s work must be taken as a process, which is never finished. Any programs can always be improved and must be changed as the needs of the community or the target population change.
- Unity of Purpose: To achieve the best quality standards, everyone in business must work towards common goals. It means having mutual support throughout the organization, no jealousy, no turf battles, and no unnecessary competitions. All interactions within the organization must be mutually aimed at achieving the best possible performance of the organization.
- Teamwork: Instead of individual performances, teamwork makes better connections and results. Moreover, relations with others also become good hence creating better results. Teamwork completely removes performance pressures from the individual and usually coaxes better performance from everyone.
- If all staff members in an organization are committed to quality performance, they should all have the opportunity to contribute to its success. People must control their affairs and opinions to accomplish their jobs effectively, and ideas must be respected and considered.
- Achieving quality requires continuous learning for everyone in an organization, and that learning must be part of the organization’s culture. In addition to learning from each other in the organization, staff should also be encouraged to take courses, attend organization-sponsored training and workshops, visit other organizations, etc., to learn more about their work and gain new insights and perspectives.
- Grassroots and community-based organizations should use the best research available to construct effective programs and initiatives, along with the experience of others. Considering this approach is much more likely to result in success and high quality than relying just on intuition or what seems politically correct.
As manufacturing engineers, we discovered workers were stripping bolts on an assembly line. I recommended switching to a different power tool after careful analysis. Consequently, we were able to increase production speed and reduce defects at the same time.
One more major accomplishment I would love to share.
During my first job, a very good friend left the technology development team due to relocation. He was in IT. He led the iOS development team. Unfortunately, nobody else on the team had ever worked with iOS apps. While studying and practicing for my graduation, I had some basic knowledge of iOS. Hence, I volunteered to take the lead role for the same, though my field was entirely different. With the help of other colleagues, I troubleshot the new app. I completed and delivered everything a month ahead of schedule. It was something very different and a new experience for me.
15. How Would You Ensure If The Manufacturing Plant Is Free Of Hazards?
You can use the below-mentioned steps to assure the quality.
- It will help if you use elimination, substitution, engineering controls, administrative controls, and personal protective equipment in the hierarchy of hazard control.
- Is it possible to eliminate the hazard?
- Replace the hazard with a less hazardous object/situation.
- Controlling engineering: is it possible to build structures that isolate people from hazards?
- Signs, alerts, and employee training are all administrative controls.
- Gloves, respirators, hard hats, full body suits, eye protection, and more are personal protective equipment.
16. What Do You Understand From “Design For Manufacturability”?
As per most companies’ available technology and experience, design for manufacturability means creating easy-to-manufacture products.
They are cost-effective, do not promote waste, are understood by factory engineers, and are easy to test.
17. Define Value Engineering.
Value engineering is about increasing performance without increasing costs or reducing costs to increase the value of a product.
Steps involved in value engineering:
- Obtain information about the product
- Identify the functions of products
- Based on the business goals, set targets for each function
- Should brainstorm Ideas for hitting targets
- Select and evaluate ideas
- Execution of ideas
- Identify results and analyze them
Repeat the process until targets are achieved
18. Are You Somewhat Familiar With CGMP?
The term “CGMP” refers to current good manufacturing practices.
Pharmaceuticals, medical devices, food and supplements, and cosmetics are industries that use these practices and regulations.
These standards and regulations are in place to ensure baseline quality.
19. What Should A Manufacturing Engineer Know?
The skills required of a manufacturing engineer include developing and optimizing manufacturing processes, working well within a team, being technically proficient, communicating effectively, and being organized. Also, knowledge of the below-mentioned needs to be there.
- Lean manufacturing
- Quality control
- Government regulations
- Six Sigma
- Safety procedures
- CAD experience a plus
20. What Do You Think Are The Roles Of A Manufacturing Engineer?
The manufacturing process is overseen and improved by manufacturing engineers. Their duties include identifying areas for improvement, designing new processes and products, ensuring high manufacturing and product quality levels, ensuring cost efficiency, and adhering to regulatory standards. Roles include:
- Manufacturing equipment design, development, installation, and monitoring
- Improving factory productivity, quality control, and waste management
- Choosing, purchasing, and installing equipment
- Should improve facilities
- Management of the budget
- Providing training to employees
21. Can You Elaborate On The Term Bom And Tell Us How It Is Used In Manufacturing? Explain Bom Types.
An apparatus used in the manufacturing process are listed on the bill of materials. Occasionally, it refers to the tools and supplies employed by a manufacturing company. It can also be viewed as a supplier in the manufacturing process.
A BOM list is necessary when building a product and ordering replacement parts, and it reduces the possibility of problems if repairs are required. A BOM helps to plan for acquisition orders and reduces errors. There are two types of BOMs: engineering and manufacturing.
- The engineering bill of materials contains all the alternative and substitute part numbers and parts in the drawing notes. It specifies the final product’s design. Among the lines of a bill of materials (BOM) are the product code, part name, part number, revision, description, quantity, unit of measurement, size, length, weight, and specifications.
- In product lifecycle management, engineers create engineering bills of materials based on computer-aided design (CAD) drawings.
- Including all the assemblies and parts needed to construct a finished product, a manufacturing bill of materials (BOM) also includes packaging materials needed to ship the product to the customer. In addition to storing all the information necessary for manufacturing activities, you must execute all processes within it before the product is completed.
22. Explain MES And How It Is Used
MES stands for manufacturing enterprise system. It is an application that controls and manages production on the factory floor. It is generally used to minimize the time needed to produce an order. Data collected can be used to optimize every process and review it. For example, employees can use this application to identify bottlenecks when they wait for components or when it seems difficult to access the necessary resources.
23. How Would You Calculate The Cost Of Manufacturing Work Still In Progress? Can You Provide Any Example Of Factory Overhead?
A cost calculation will be based on raw materials, labor, factory overheads, and general administrative costs for the manufacturing work.
Manufacturing work in progress is a cost accounted for by manufacturing. Indirect costs include factory overhead and general and administrative costs, which include raw materials and labor. Each of these can be used to calculate the cost of the manufacturing work still in progress.
Among the factory components, overhead are factory rent, insurance, utilities, administrative costs, equipment costs, depreciation, and taxes.
24. Where Do You Find Yourself In 5 Years?
In five years, I would like to be recognized as someone with a deep understanding of manufacturing engineering. I know that I can achieve this here. In the future, I expect to take on more managerial roles at your company, including leading a few projects.
25. What Is A Major Difference Between Lean And Just-In-Time Manufacturing?
Just-in-time (JIT) components or parts are delivered just in time to a production station. By employing this technique, inventory costs are reduced, and waste is reduced by reducing damaged or surplus parts. In addition to JIT, lean manufacturing incorporates the customer perspective, so each step in the process adds some value to satisfy the customer.
In the above content, we have mentioned 25 top interview questions and answers for manufacturing engineering. You can quickly check them as they surely help you achieve great success. They surely won’t remain exact for all manufacturing engineers, but most of them will be helpful.