Ankur Banerjee

Ankur Banerjee

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Mechies! Are we underpaid and overworked?

I knew even before I entered this world of mechanical engineering that I’ll not be getting as handsomely paid as my colleagues in the Software/IT field. But I had hope that some time the world would recognize the worth of  mechanical engineers and start paying them more. And I believed money is not important – its personal satisfaction that matters the most! But over these six years – my change from a teenager to a young man in his twenties has changed my thinking too. I realized that the kind of money that my friends in the field of Information Technology and Management was much beyond what an average mechie earns. The salary that a mechanical engineer earns at the end of his career is what the IT guy earns after just 4 or five years of experience.
Though one can argue that the satisfaction a mechanical engineer gets with his job is higher because he is doing something that he likes, the stark reality is that most mechies who graduate out of college are not given pure technical or engineering jobs. They do techno-management works like managing the labour, placing order and maintaining supplies. The result is that they hardly use anything that they learrn in college. Thermodynamics, fluid mechanics, theory of machines, manufacturing sciences, industrial engineering – all get erased from the mind. They remain no more mechies but managers.  The only exception where people really do a bit of mechanical engineering is usually the product dvelopment & R&D departments.

All these mechie turned managers work for almost 12  hours a day and earn only a fraction of what their counterparts in the IT or finance field earn. This makes me think – why this discrimination?  But I get the answer once I think about the fate of those engaged in agriculture – their work is more important and vital for survival than anyone else. But they get paid the least. Its all in the game.

Besided no one stopped us from earning more. What if I'll get paid less? It will be  an opportunity for me to start my own business and pay other mechanical engineers much better. Lets see..
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