We have reviewed more than 10 well-written blog posts and 15 video contents that introduce must-have skills for Bridge engineers. So, here we listed up the top 4 most featured skills and 4 more major skills that MIDAS civil experts think every successful Bridge engineer must-have.
1. Project management and leadership skills
As you may know, only licensed civil engineers are allowed to sign final design documents for infrastructure projects. This is because they are the only ones who can confirm whether the design complies with all standards and safety regulations. Therefore, civil engineers are the center of the entire project’s design and implementation. While you develop a career as a junior engineer, you will learn how to lead clients, managers, planners, technicians and provide them with appropriate guidance for a given project.
2. Finding Errors & Omissions
Bridge engineers can prevent a number of errors in projects by evaluating the work of others. According to McGraw Hill Construction’s report, “Managing Uncertainty and Expectations in Building Design and Construction (2014)”, Errors & Omissions are the top concerns for business owners. 80% of surveyed owners responded that additional work and costs are inevitable if there are errors & omissions present in a given project. We think this situation is no different in Bridge design and construction.
It requires years of experience in various projects to find errors and suggest cost-effective solutions to partakers. Having hands-on experience on the newest and most advanced software tools (CAD or CAE) can help you save time and minimize errors by providing features in various processes such as design checks and load rating.
3. Time management
Remember, time never waits. You have very limited time to complete tasks to meet your client’s deadline. Delays in construction can have detrimental effects on different construction stages such as the budget plan, which will take a great toll on your company’s reputation. Therefore, you need to allocate your time efficiently so that all the design & analysis procedures meet quality requirements within the budget and time-frames.
4. Field Experience
Having field experience in various civil engineering projects helps civil engineers visualize the entire process happening on construction sites. Furthermore, with more field experience, engineers are able to make more appropriate changes when there is a change in the design or material of a given project. For example, planning for material logistics could be shortened if the construction site environment is considered wisely, or the construction budget can be saved if the site conditions are fully grasped by the civil engineer in advance.
5. Communication skill
The above-mentioned skills are essential for an engineer; however, good communication skills are by far the most important skill for a civil engineer. All your ideas and suggestions should be delivered in a clear, concise, and easy-to-understand way so that all partakers can follow you in a given project. Leaving ambiguity while delivering your ideas about a project may bring delays and obstacles in the near future.
Civil engineers should be able to deliver plans and reports to a wide range of audiences, ranging from investors to site engineers. Furthermore, clients will expect your report to be cost-effective and safe, while planners and technicians will expect your plans to be convincing and practical.
Civil/Bridge projects are said to have good synergy when their respective roles are matched. For example, if an investor decides to cut the budget of a project, it will affect the quality of the materials, leading to new designs from the project engineer. This domino effect created by one person affects those people involved, creating losses for the project. Therefore, a civil engineer must be able to visualize the role and responsibilities of the entire project and be able to prevent any problems that could be detrimental to any given project.
7. Experience in the newest and most advanced software tools
Powerful civil engineering software can assist you in managing various projects. It can help you check designs and loads based on different international design codes. Also, it can automatically create load combinations in accordance with specified design standards. This process will help you create precise and correct reports for you to deliver to your clients. Furthermore, various forms of graphic outputs (charts, member forces, results of displacements, etc) can be printed, which makes your reports more convincing to your clients and boss.
8. Technical skills
It is obvious to say that civil engineers must have a high level of understanding of mathematics and physics. It would be more appropriate to talk about the technical skills related to:
- Structural Analysis
Analyze complex steel/concrete structure to determine design adequacy
- International Bridge Design Standards and Codes
Set the standard for material properties, load combinations, load factors, etc.
- CAD and CAE software
Draft preliminary and final design with CAD or CAE software.
- Design Calculations
Check design and analysis calculations of bridge constructions: time history results of displacements and member forces, dynamic analysis results, and static analysis results.
An effective way to achieve these above-mentioned essential skills?
1 . To properly manage civil/bridge engineering projects and further improve the visualization skills mentioned above, we recommend watching our free webinars.
We strongly suggest you watch our FREE webinars and courses hosted by our experts in civil structures. We have more than 39 case studies and 400 uploaded videos available on our website. Watch and learn how experts manage their cases and learn the special considerations they take while designing structures.
2. Experience in the newest and most advanced software tools
We provide tutorial videos for beginners who want to gain experience in civil engineering software.
You may also try our 30-day fully-functional trial version of midas Civil.