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Computer Hardware Engineers

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What Do Computer Hardware Engineers Do?

Computer Hardware Engineer Example Research, design, develop, or test computer or computer-related equipment for commercial, industrial, military, or scientific use. May supervise the manufacturing and installation of computer or computer-related equipment and components.

List of Computer Hardware Engineer Job Duties

  • Specify power supply requirements and configuration, drawing on system performance expectations and design specifications.
  • Provide technical support to designers, marketing and sales departments, suppliers, engineers and other team members throughout the product development and implementation process.
  • Store, retrieve, and manipulate data for analysis of system capabilities and requirements.
  • Recommend purchase of equipment to control dust, temperature, and humidity in area of system installation.
  • Write detailed functional specifications that document the hardware development process and support hardware introduction.
  • Confer with engineering staff and consult specifications to evaluate interface between hardware and software and operational and performance requirements of overall system.

Computer Hardware Engineer Skills

These are the skills Computer Hardware Engineers say are the most useful in their careers:

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Writing: Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

  • Computer Architect
  • Computer Engineer
  • Systems Engineer
  • Field Service Engineer
  • Computer Hardware Developer

What Kind of Computer Hardware Engineer Job Opportunities Are There?

There were about 73,600 jobs for Computer Hardware Engineers in 2016 (in the United States).

New jobs are being produced at a rate of 5.5% which is lower than average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 4,000 new jobs for Computer Hardware Engineers by 2026. Due to new job openings and attrition, there will be an average of 5,100 job openings in this field each year.

Forecasted Number of Jobs for Computer Hardware Engineers in U.S.

The states with the most job growth for Computer Hardware Engineers are California, Colorado, and Washington.

Watch out if you plan on working in Minnesota, Idaho, or Oklahoma. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Computer Hardware Engineer Salary

The typical yearly salary for Computer Hardware Engineers is somewhere between $66,700 and $172,630. A Computer Hardware Engineer median salary is $114,600.

Salary Ranges for Computer Hardware Engineers

Below is a list of the median annual salaries for jobs of this type in different U.S. states.

Annual Mean Salary by State
State Annual Mean Salary



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New Jersey


New York


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South Carolina








What Tools do Computer Hardware Engineers Use?

Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Computer Hardware Engineers may use on a daily basis:

  • Verilog
  • Electronic design automation EDA software
  • Cadence Allegro PCB Designer
  • Microsoft Excel
  • Shell script
  • C++
  • National Instruments LabVIEW
  • Cadence Concept
  • UNIX
  • Xilinx ISE Foundation

Who Employs Computer Hardware Engineers?

Computer Hardware Engineer Sectors

Those thinking about becoming Computer Hardware Engineers might also be interested in the following careers:

  • Computer Systems Analysts

Are you already one of the many Computer Hardware Engineers in the United States? If you’re thinking about changing careers, these fields are worth exploring:

  • Electrical Engineers


Bureau of Labor Statistics

College Factual

O*NET Online

Image Credit: Via Wikimedia Commons

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