Application Engineer Job Description
Working as a bridge between customers and engineering teams, Application Engineers use customer input and sales information to design or re-design, develop, test and implement complex software programs and applications. They also provide technical support and expertise to customers, testing applications, responding to customer feedback, installations, maintenance and often performing sales presentations and demonstrations.
Application Engineers reach across many departments, working with the engineering team, the sales team, the customer service team and the manufacturing team. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the field is expected to achieve very rapid growth of about 17 percent through 2024.
Application Engineer Duties and Responsibilities
In order to provide applications and software that satisfy customers, an Application Engineer performs many different tasks. We analyzed job listings for Application Engineers in order to identify these core duties and responsibilities.
Application Engineers are responsible for designing, developing and implementing programs and applications. They must be able to do customer analysis to create applications that respond to customer needs and provide innovative solutions to common problems. They also perform prototyping, application tests and code reviews to ensure product is satisfactory.
Improve Existing Software
Responsible for existing software in addition to new developments, Application Engineers perform debugging, testing, code improvement and re-designing tasks. They work with customer service and quality analysis teams to optimize products and ensure products stay up-to-date and continue to satisfy customer needs.
Provide Technical Support
From application start-up through the warranty period, Application Engineers must provide customers with ongoing technical support. This support includes responding to customer issues, providing updated software that solves bug issues, performing installs for customers and working with the customer service team.
Assess Customer Base
In order to design and re-design effective applications, Application Engineers must acquire and analyze customer needs and problems, making recommendations to the engineering team to satisfy needs and develop solutions. They generate ideas for software products that innovate and fill gaps in the current market.
Application Engineer Skills
Because Application Engineers operate at the intersection of the engineering, sales, customer service and manufacturing departments, they must possess strong communication abilities, excellent mathematical skills and the capacity to facilitate teamwork across departments. Application engineers are a uniquely talented in both customer service and detail-oriented, analytical tasks. Specific software and development skill requirements vary greatly across industries and are dependent upon specific job details.
Core skills: Based on job listings we looked at, employers want Application Engineers with these core skills. If you want to work as an Application Engineer, focus on the following.
- Having relevant engineering or development experience
- Possessing knowledge of software and coding skills specific to job
- Demonstrating project management abilities
- Developing strong quantitative skills
- Collaborating across interdisciplinary teams
Advanced skills: While most employers did not require the following skills, multiple job listings included them as preferred. Add these to your Application Engineer toolbox and broaden your career options.
- A Master’s degree in engineering
- Industry-specific experience
- Familiarity with company product
- Mobile development experience
Application Engineer Resources
We searched the Web to find the best industry resources to help you continue exploring a career as an Application Engineer. From thought leaders to industry groups, this list is packed with opportunities to learn, connect and engage.
On the Web
Coding Horror – Co-Founder of Stack Overflow talks about coding
Scott Hanselman – Popular programming blog
Women Who Code – A blog about programming focused on women
NSPE – National Society of Professional Engineers
NAP – National Association of Programmers
AWC – Association for Women in Computing
Application Engineer Books
Soft Skills – A software developer’s life manual
Programming: Computer Programming for Beginners – Basics of Java, SQL, and C++
Programming: C++ Programming – Learning C++ for beginners
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