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Know Your Career Opportunities - A Primer On Seeking New Employment

Lots of young engineers seek new opportunities of employment. In most cases the overpowering consideration is to get a hike in the salary and / or an enhanced position in the new organization. Is this all to seeking a new job? I would consider it a folly to have such a approach while seeking new employment. A lot more needs to be found out about your prospective new employer before you take the plunge. Remember you are looking at a long term career prospective and any unwise decision is going to cost you dear in the long run. I am providing some point wise guidance on what aspects need to be checked out before any young engineer decides to switch jobs.

1. Set your priorities whether you are looking for a permanent type employment or a short-term contract. Short-term contracts generally pay more but in a short-term contract the employer has no obligation towards the employee and you can be fired at less than a day's notice. If quick money is the sole criteria and you have a tendency not to hang around one place for long then opt for the short-term contract option.

2. Check out your probable employer's credentials. What kind of a market reputation he has? Are they doing substantial and meaningful work in your area of expertise or strength? Check out what projects they are engaged in and how long these projects will run. If you join an organization and find out they have no meaningful work you will soon find yourselves twiddling your thumbs and also get this unpleasant feeling of being a liability to the organization since you are not contributing anything for the growth and profit of the organization. You just simply end up as an overhead expense to the organization. I can assure there is no worse feeling then sitting idle and still collecting your paycheck.

3. I would recommend joining a reputed organization at a lower paycheck then joining an unknown or little known organization at a higher paycheck. This might sound boring and a very conservative approach but I believe most people are looking for stability in their jobs rather than adventure.

4. Don't deviate too much from your area of expertise. Stick to your areas of strength and look for employers who can provide you substantial growth in your area of expertise. Otherwise you will end up as a jack-of-all-trades and master-of-none. This is a sheer waste of one's talent and expertise. I am not advocating anything against learning new skills but everybody needs to focus on his or her area of strength.

5. Check out the place (town / city / state / country) where you have been offered a job. Is the place amenable for living to you? As an example, if you cannot handle cold weather, Calgary in Alberta would simply be the wrong place to work for you. Your physical and mental well being counts above any lucrative job opportunity.

6. Generally as a rule do not take up any employment opportunity at a lower paycheck then your current paycheck. If your prospective employer has the temerity to offer you a lower salary then your current one, it is clear that he is trying to exploit you. Do not let anybody exploit you or take undue advantage of you. An employer-employee relationship is of a meaningful partnership and not that of a master and a slave.

7. If you are having a family and are desirous to take up any job wherein your family stays with you take their opinion about the new job offer. Tell them all the pros and cons of a family life at the new place of employment. These are your loved ones, and any discontent on their part is going to affect your own well being. If your personal life is in disarray it certainly will affect your professional life. Do not ignore this aspect of choosing a new employment.

8. Do your homework on the prospects of business in an overall perspective in your area of expertise. If global trends indicate that business in your area of expertise is going to face a turndown in the time to come, look for employment opportunities where other skill sets that you have acquired can be utilized. After all nobody wants to end up on the losing side.

9. Last but not the least, make a sound introspection on where you want to end up as an employee 15-20 years down the line. Introspecting today on what are your targets and goals in the future will ensure to bring a brighter future for you.

A lot of these suggestions that I have made in my blog entry may sound idealistic but many of these are based on my own experiences working as an employee for the last 26 years.

I would be happy to receive the comments of young engineers who are looking for brighter career prospects in their chosen area of expertise.


Supriyo Mukherjee
Jun 03 2011 12:27 PM
Anuja Sawant
Jun 04 2011 03:03 AM
I am a 21 years old female, pursuing B.E. Chemical and I am currently in the last year of this degree. I would like to ask you about the job opportunities for women in the Chemical Industry in India, and preferably in the state of Maharashtra. I was suggested by a Human Resource Manager to apply for Consultancy jobs or in Designing section of the Industry, I was also told they do not prefer women as a plant operator since there are change of shifts. Can you please suggest me other options suitable for women?
Kindly help.
Hi Ankur,<BR><BR>I really agree with your thoughts presented here regarding career choice.<BR>Though higher position and fat salary is mostly the reason for shift in job, other points need to be considered while doing so. Basically work culture at new place, reputation of the employer, climatic conditions, family consideration, your job profile etc. <BR><BR>I think you have done a good job by putting down different points to be considered during job shift in detail.<BR><BR>-Rahul<BR>
Really a nice article...Most of us have lot of dilemmas in choosing a right employer if new job..I felt most of the points what You have discussed here..keep writing Sir
divya singh
Jun 30 2011 11:36 PM
Hey Ankur,I would like to point out that ,from my point of view the title of the blog does not match its content.This blog complies of the choices one should make while opting a particular job.But the title makes us to look forward for something like that what all options one can have after pursuing B.Tech (ChE),and what additional degrees or diplomas will open the doors into different fields.For example, I heard that a degree/ diploma in environmental or legal(law) field along with B.Tech in chemical engg. can give wide range of option.
As I have just completed my 3rd year of B.Tech,i am keen to know the all possible options, and the additional degrees/courses that will widen my eligibility .
Please guide us,the young undergraduates in this regard.Your help will be highly appreciated.

The title is exactly what it should be. It is for seeking a new employment considering that you are already employed somewhere and looking for a change in employment.

I personally have acted in 3 different roles during my long career of 26 years. First as an Operations Engineer in chemical process plants, then as a sales/marketing person which was a mistake, since I was not cut out for sales/marketing and lastly as a design engineer which is where I am today and comfortable with my role.

I personally do not have any knowledge about any other options as a chemical engineer and would not be in a position to provide any guidance in fields other than what I have mentioned above.

I do know a few chemical engineers who have moved in to "Information Technology" during the early years of my career and I think they are doing quite well.

New options keep opening in this dynamic world but I have had my hands full with design engineering and have never tried to look beyond this.

The spare time I get is spent on "Cheresources" because what started out as a pastime has turned into a passion and I love interacting with the members of "Cheresources".

Dr. Process
Jul 04 2011 03:49 AM
HI Ankur,

I am a M Tech Chemical Engineer, Previously I was working as a Process Engineer in a Pharmaceutical Industry, but due to low paychecks I switch to a project based company at a higher paychecks as a process design and development engineer. But now i am just a marketing person ( proposal engineering) as both the Process Design and Proposal department got combined.

Kindly suggest what should be my next plan of action.
Dr. Process,

If you are not satisfied with your job simply try to move on. Decide what you really want to do? If you want to be a process design engineer search hard for such a job. Maybe you may require to join a small engineering consulting firm which deals in your area of interest. They may not offer you what you are looking for as salary but the experience would be very valuable.

Oil and Gas is booming once again and Oil prices are expected to shoot above the $150 mark in the very near future. Joining a firm which primarily deals with oil & gas may help to boost your career. But then again all businesses are cyclic in nature. However, the chance that the global economy will see a recession like 2008-2009 in the near future are quite negligible.

For the future of oil and it's growth refer the link below:


Dear Ankur,
I am working in Indian Oil Corporation as a Senior Engineer in operations department. I am interested in joining Basic Engineering companies like UOP, Haldoe Topsoe. I request you to give me your suggestion on my decision. Whether a job switch is advisable.
Thank you

I don't know how many years you have put in operations, but I can only tell you one thing that when I switched from operations to design I had to start all over again. I have no regrets about my decision because I have always enjoyed working as a design professional.

If you think that design engineering would give you satisfaction and you don't mind sacrificing your seniority in operations then just go ahead and do it. Sometimes money and seniority play second fiddle to what you love to do the most.


talk2hnag,I don't know how many years you have put in operations, but I can only tell you one thing that when I switched from operations to design I had to start all over again. I have no regrets about my decision because I have always enjoyed working as a design professional.If you think that design engineering would give you satisfaction and you don't mind sacrificing your seniority in operations then just go ahead and do it. Sometimes money and seniority play second fiddle to what you love to do the most.Regards,Ankur.

Thamks ankur,
I completed 5yrs in operations. But if i want to move for design, then they pay lesser than what i am drawing now.
Darshan Soni
Mar 24 2014 02:19 AM



Really a nice article, I'm a mechanical engineer & working with a major CGD company in India since last 4 years & I have joined as a GET.


I'm looking after CNG operations & mainteance where my major role is to look after O&M of CNG compressors & CNG dispensers.


I find there's nothing much to learn in my present role & employer but due to certain constraints I'm not able to find a change or switch over & continuing since last 4 years.


To better understand Oil & gas field recently I have started my Post Graduation Diploma in Petroleum Management as a working executive in a premium petroleum institute.


requesting you to help me find out the way.

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