Role Review: Control Systems Engineer

Posted on 27 March 2023

​Automating a process is not a new way of working. Relying on technology to complete roles that were once completed by humans has been in use for hundreds of years. However, Labour statistics have predicted that the role of Control Systems Engineer is growing by a faster than average 6% amongst other engineering roles. That statistic equates to 146k new roles in the US alone. Automation is only getting bigger!

At Zero Global, we are seeing increasing demand for talented Control Systems Engineers across the Clean Tech space.

Control Engineering – what does it mean?

A control systems engineer is a person who designs, develops, commissions and often maintains a control system. A control system is a set of devices/systems that regulate the behaviour of other devices or systems. It is used on a variety of products from industrial power to shower units. There are many different types of control systems, but each one serves the same purpose: to control outputs.

The “control” focuses on the tools used which monitor or measure the result of a process, for example, motion or heat sensors.

Typically, there are two key control types

  • Digital – which is based on data processing and data signals

  • Binary – which focuses on physical elements such as water flow, lighting etc

Tasks of a Control Engineer

The responsibilities of a control engineer lie within the research, design and management of monitoring and control systems. This includes bench testing and integration. This can include a selection of tools while working with key stakeholders to ensure the needs of the control panel works.

The role of a control engineer is not exclusively with new projects.

It is often expected to maintain, manage and update these systems as demand changes. The role requires recommending and implementing improvements to make systems safer or more efficient.

Some of the expectations can include:

  • Development of hardware and software for control equipment

  • Control and maintenance of existing controls

  • Develop, write, and optimise PLC, HMI, Vision and Robot programs

  • Ensuring that the process works safely and efficiently in accordance with specifications

What experience is needed to be a control engineer?

The role of a control engineer requires both technical abilities as well as a logical approach to problem-solving.

Some of the attributes of a person in a control engineer role include:

  • Safe working practices regarding electrical equipment

  • Knowledge and experience of VMWare

  • Software skills such as HMI, PCI and Simulink

  • Ability to project manage

  • Ability to identify, maintain, and utilise SCADA systems and KPIs

Most employers will look for an engineering-based degree, often computer engineering, automation and electronic engineering or industrial studies.

More senior-level roles will also require a master's degree.

Considering a career as a control systems engineer?

At Zero we work with businesses that are focused on unfu*cking the planet.

If you are looking for your next role and want to work for a company with purpose, get in touch.

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