What does a Research Engineer do?

Research engineers plan, design, develop, and build innovative equipment and technologies using a research-driven process. They perform investigations, testing, modeling, verifications, comparative analysis, and other forms of research to make educated recommendations. They support and guide organizations or clients in making informed decisions based on this data, which is then used to develop action plans for designing and implementing systems and equipment that supports key objectives. They also play an active role in strategic planning by providing ongoing research-based input and advice.

Research engineers typically have at least a bachelor’s degree in engineering, computer science, or another technical field, although an advanced degree is often preferred. They should have hands-on experience with a wide range of research tools and programs, including verification and testing programs.

What responsibilities are common for Research Engineer jobs?
  • Establish and manage the operating and capital equipment budgets for the team.
  • Identify, evaluate, and manage vendors to support early-mid phase device prototyping.
  • Perform data analysis to identify trends and opportunities of improvement.
  • Coordinate product return, on hold, and product destruction operations.
  • Enhance the product through algorithm development and code implementation.
  • Actively lead in team engagement action planning and implementation.
  • Prepare and contribute to technical documents, product manuals, and protocols.
  • Design and oversee manufacturing of test equipment and apparatus.
  • Assist in process development, product optimization, including manufacturing and QC procedures.
  • Help organize and participate in field trials as required.
  • Lead scientific evaluation and participate in diligence and negotiation activities.
  • Assist with the evaluation and recommendation of new equipment and technology.
  • Audit review programs and make corrections based on findings.
  • Serve as technical project lead (principal investigator) for integration process development programs.
  • Work closely with internal product teams to understand and address their requirements.
  • Review work products and documents to ensure technical rigor and quality.
What are the typical qualifications for Research Engineer jobs?
  • Bachelor's Degree in engineering or science.
  • Fluent with Python and other programming languages.
  • Basic understanding of writing protocols.
  • Solid algorithm design skills.
  • Strong leadership, problem solving, and critical thinking skills.
Education--
Work/Life Balance
3.9 ★
Salary Range--
Career Opportunity
3.7 ★
Avg. Experience2-4 years

Research Engineer Salaries

Average Base Pay

$4,000 /month
Same as national average
Not including cash compensation
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$3K
Median: $4K
$5K
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Glassdoor Estimated Salary

Research Engineer Career Path

Learn how to become a Research Engineer, what skills and education you need to succeed, and what level of pay to expect at each step on your career path.

Research Engineer

Years of Experience Distribution

0 - 1
20%
2 - 4
38%
5 - 7
20%
8+
22%
Not including years spent in education and/or training

Research Engineer Insights

Read what Research Engineer professionals have to say about their job experiences and view top companies for this career.
Huawei TechnologiesHuawei Technologies
Research Engineer
9 Apr 2021

“Research is extremely applied and the best ideas suffer from production level coding and technical debt.”

The Raymond CorporationThe Raymond Corporation
Research Engineer
13 Jul 2022

“Those people are usually highly skilled and great to work with because they enjoy what they do.”

PolarityTEPolarityTE
R&D
6 Aug 2020

“I enjoyed my work and the people I interacted with on a regular basis were great.”

Telit Wireless SolutionsTelit Wireless Solutions
R&D Engineer
7 Mar 2022

“3. Salary increments are not great and money related issues don't get easily addressed.”

AztechAztech
Senior R&D Firmware Engineer
16 Jul 2021

“Do not have any development methodologies and project management strategies to develop a good product.”

University of LeedsUniversity of Leeds
Research Software Engineer
5 Jan 2022

“The work and life balance was very much similar to like working at an angel startup.”

ClarapathClarapath
Director of Device R&D
20 Jul 2021

“It is a great opportunity to learn and apply what you know in many areas and levels.”

STEMCELL TechnologiesSTEMCELL Technologies
Research & Development
29 May 2020

“Everyone here wants to do a great job but sometimes hierarchy and bureaucratic processes can get in the way.”

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Research Engineer Interviews

Frequently asked questions about the role and responsibilities of a Research Engineer

The most similar professions to Research Engineer are:
  • Engineering Consultant
  • Development Engineer
  • Optical Engineer
  • Research Assistant

Related Careers

Engineering Consultant
No skills overlap
Development Engineer
$58,500
No skills overlap
Optical Engineer
$56,011
No skills overlap
Research Assistant
$36,000
No skills overlap

Research Engineer jobs