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Insights 5 essential skills for structural engineers

What is a structural engineer?

Structural engineering is a subdivision of civil engineering where the key focus is infrastructure projects' design, analysis, and construction. Engineers in this field are responsible for designing structural processes, ensuring they can withstand forces and different weather conditions, analysing structural performance, inspecting and evaluating existing structures, and more. 

Structural engineers, therefore, play a vital role in ensuring that our built environment is safe, reliable, and functional. 

At AtkinsRéalis , we provide a full range of design, engineering and project management services for buildings, transportation and other infrastructure programmes. This opens you up to a range of opportunities in terms of the projects and experts across the business you’ll work with. 

We’ve put together five key soft and hard skills, you’ll need to excel as a Structural Engineer:

Structural engineer and foreman worker with touch pad discuss, plan working for the outdoors building construction site.

Communication skills

The projects you work on will be complex and require a technical understanding. However, not all of the stakeholders you collaborate with will have this same understanding. 

This is why communication is an essential skill for a Structural Engineer. You’ll need the ability to communicate technical information in a clear and concise way. 

Technical skills 

There are many components in this role that require technical skills. Here are a few that you should be proficient in: 

  • Computer-Aided Decision (CAD) - this software is used to create 2D and 3D structural designs. 
  • Structural design - you’ll need to understand the behaviour of different structures and how to design different structural elements.
  • Building regulations - knowledge of building codes and regulations to maintain safety.

Attention to detail

Structural integrity is a critical part of this job. As you design buildings, dams, bridges, and more, you will need to pay great attention to detail. Whether you are looking at the materials to use in a project, the measurements of a building or adhering to regulations - attention to detail will help you to deliver safe and reliable projects. 

Teamworking and interpersonal skills

You’ll collaborate with Architects, Contractors and other interdisciplinary teams and all work towards a common goal. Teamwork allows you to deliver the best possible outcome on your projects. We deliver projects economically and efficiently. 

Structural engineering projects are complex and have a lot of different aspects that feed into them. You’ll also be working with tight deadlines. Coordinating with your teams ensures that nothing slips through the cracks, you have different perspectives, as well as your own personal development. 

Decision-making skills

In this role, you’ll be making a lot of independent decisions in the planning, organizing and coordination of solutions to complex problems. From conception to completion, Structural Engineers manage projects where every decision is an important part of the overall project outcome.

You want to ensure that everyone on your team is safe, the building meets requirements, and you are able to finish the project on time. 

Create a better-built environment with AtkinsRéalis

With Structural Engineers in high demand, we are looking for talented professionals to join our team in the APAC region. 

As one of the world’s most respected design, engineering and project management consultancies, you’ll build the skills you need to thrive in your career.

Push the boundaries of design with AtkinsRéalis and explore our Structural Engineering roles