The field of engineering is divided into two main categories, and those are design engineering and project management. Design engineering refers to the systematic planning, designing and constructing of a structure or object, whereas project management refers to coordinating activities among the different phases of an engineering project. Engineering management is basically the process of applying the discipline of management to this field of science.
The engineering management process involves planning, designing, building, testing, maintaining and sometimes dismantling of a system or a structure, including the analysis of results obtained during these phases. The most common areas of application for engineering management are:
These are the steps that are taken to meet system requirements. The systems which are used in these processes include but are not limited to: manufacturing plants, construction and maintenance facilities, power stations and other industrial buildings, vehicles and ships, dams, wind farms, water treatment plants, pharmaceutical labs, aircraft engines and many others. The system requirements of these systems are determined based on the specific need of their users.
When the system has been defined by its users, it is now time to determine the system's requirements according to their particular needs. Engineers then decide how to satisfy their customers with the best products and services and to achieve this goal, the engineering and management process involves a series of steps:
Engineering management takes many forms. However, it is generally considered that it has two distinct branches: project management and cost control. The first branch of engineering management deals with the planning, design, construction, and operation of a specific system or a set of systems, whereas the second branch of engineering management deals with controlling costs. Cost control engineering management have some similarities as well. However, they differ in the manner in which they implement this knowledge to control costs.
In short, the engineering management process is a complex and multifaceted science. It involves a series of interrelated techniques and methods that are used to control costs of a certain system, and which are then applied to achieve cost-effective solutions. The key aspects that make the engineering management process effective are transparency, reliability, efficiency, accuracy and repeatability, and these are achieved through a combination of mathematical modeling, analysis and simulation.
Engineering managers also incorporate several key elements such as planning, budgeting, purchasing, design, engineering, construction and operation to achieve cost-effective solutions. Each element in this process plays a part in the success . . . . . . of the entire engineering management system.
As said earlier, one of the most important elements of engineering management is Project Management. This is what allows engineers to focus on the actual work rather than worrying about cost overruns and errors.