20 Retirement Jobs for Engineers (With Salary and Responsibilities)

Updated December 9, 2022

Professional experience in engineering provides knowledge to share with others and assume a leadership role for young professionals. Whether you're at retirement age or want to retire from engineering, you may find a variety of opportunities to lead, teach and expand on your industry skills. In this article, we provide 20 examples of jobs for retired engineers with average salaries and job descriptions to help you find the right fit.

Related: Ideas for "What to Do When I Retire"

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20 job options for retired engineers

Here are 20 career options to consider as a retired engineer:

1. High school teacher

National average salary: $46,788 per year

Primary duties: Retired engineers can help students develop a love for engineering and innovative thinking by working as high school teachers. Depending on their specialty, they can teach math, science, woodshop or STEM-related courses. High school teachers are responsible for creating course curricula, grading coursework and teaching multiple classes of students per day.

Related: Learn About Being a High School Teacher

2. Product tester

National average salary: $53,570 per year

Primary duties: Product testers help companies by using new products, inspecting them and giving critiques on their quality. Being a product tester is a good job for retired engineers because they can apply their knowledge to ensure the product's quality. They may also complete this job at home by receiving products in the mail. Manufacturing, technology and engineering companies often hire people with engineering backgrounds to provide extensive insights into products and potential defects.

Related: 6 Types of Product Testing (With Examples and Tips)

3. Technical writer

National average salary: $58,299 per year

Primary duties: Technical writers write instruction manuals and other technical documents to help consumers and professionals navigate machinery, equipment or appliances. Retired engineers might complete technical writer duties from home. Because they already have experience in a related field, they might take an online technical writing certification course and then create a writing portfolio to start applying for available roles.

Related: How To Become a Technical Writer in Five Steps

4. Environmental compliance specialist

National average salary: $59,414 per year

Primary duties: An environmental compliance specialist typically works for government agencies to uphold environmental laws and regulations. Retired environmental or chemical engineers may find this a good job option. In this role, they visit manufacturing plants, factories and other industrial sites to inspect operations. They run tests using specialized equipment to record pollution levels and other potential waste factors. Environmental compliance specialists also consider how an industrial site might affect local communities or ecosystems and enforce standards accordingly. 

Related: 8 Types of Compliance Jobs (With Examples for Each Field)

5. Engineering coordinator

National average salary: $60,865 per year

Primary duties: Engineering coordinators are responsible for partaking in engineering projects by completing administrative tasks. Retired engineers may be good candidates due to their experience and possible specialization. In this role, they schedule meetings, oversee project budgets, maintain digital filing systems and order materials needed to complete engineering projects.

6. Land surveyor

National average salary: $61,222 per year

Primary duties: Land surveyors work for construction companies, contractors and government agencies to survey land before the start of construction projects. This may be a good option for retired civil or environmental engineers. In this role, they record measurements, take pictures and make a note of any environmental factors the crew needs to accommodate for. This includes soil type, vegetation, waterways and the overall levelness of a plot of land. 

Related: Learn About Being a Surveyor

7. City planner

National average salary: $61,616 per year

Primary duties: City planners work for local governments to provide their expertise on how to organize building layouts, public spaces or roadways. They also consider potential geographic factors that could affect the success of their designs. City planners usually start their careers by working as civil engineers, making it a good opportunity for retired civil engineers or transportation engineers.

Related: Urban Planning Skills: Definitions and Examples

8. Industrial mechanic

National average salary: $68,018 per year

Primary duties: Industrial mechanics typically work on an on-call basis, which is helpful for retired engineers as it gives them a more flexible schedule. Industrial mechanics are typically employed by factories or manufacturing plants to replace and repair equipment as needed. Given their experience, retired engineers with a background in industrial engineering can excel in this role.

Related: Mechanical vs. Industrial Engineering: What's the Difference?

9. Technical trainer

National average salary: $69,347 per year

Primary duties: Technical trainers work for engineering firms and technical companies to help train new hires in engineering practices at their workplace. For retired engineers with a desire to teach, this is an opportunity to help new engineers adapt to working in a professional environment. They also have a responsibility to draft information documents that outline necessary practices and procedures for technical projects. 

Related: How To Write a Technical Trainer Resume (With Template)

10. Maintenance manager

National average salary: $70,915 per year

Primary duties: Maintenance managers work for commercial or residential buildings to coordinate repairs and general maintenance activities. Retired engineers with experience in electrical or mechanical engineering may be candidates for this role. Duties include repairing and checking elevators, electrical systems, generators or air-conditioning units. Maintenance managers monitor budgets, schedule maintenance checks and oversee a team of staff. 

Related: Learn About Being a Maintenance Manager

11. Environmental consultant

National average salary: $73,475 per year

Primary duties: Environmental consultants help construction companies and industrial site owners adhere to environmental regulations. Retired environmental science engineers may find part-time positions in this field. Duties include conducting tests on soil and nearby waterways to identify potential hazards to their projects or the environment. To become an environmental consultant, individuals need a degree in environmental science or engineering, followed by a few years of experience in an environment-focused role. However, some employers prefer candidates who have a master's degree in environmental science or engineering.

Related: How To Become an Environmental Consultant

12. Engineering supervisor

National average salary: $74,9153 per year

Primary duties: Engineering supervisors are responsible for providing a supportive leadership role to engineering departments or production facilities. Retired engineers can use their education and professional experience to qualify for this role. In this role, they supervise engineers in carrying out product tests and creating blueprints. In a manufacturing setting, engineering supervisors diagnose machine defects, make repairs and order new equipment. 

13. Building consultant

National average salary: $75,390 per year

Primary duties: Building consultants work for building consultant firms or as self-employed individuals to help with pre- and post-construction details like creating construction blueprints, presenting marketing materials and maintaining communications with trade professionals. Retirees who worked in civil engineering roles have the background to contribute to construction projects and building or neighborhood layouts. 

Related: How To Become a Consultant

14. Professor

National average salary: $76,590 per year

Primary duties: Working as a professor at a college or university allows engineers to apply their professional experience to specialized areas while teaching young engineers. To become an engineering professor, a retiree needs a master's degree in an engineering specialty coupled with industry experience.

Related: Associate Professor vs. Professor: What's the Difference?

15. Quality assurance inspector

National average salary: $76,604 per year

Primary duties: Quality assurance inspectors work for factories or manufacturing plants to ensure the proper assembly of products per laws or regulations. For retirees who worked as product, mechanical or industrial engineers, this job allows them to apply their knowledge while continuing to learn new skills. They also check finished products for defects before they're packaged and shipped to retailers.

Related: Quality Assurance Inspector - Resume Samples

16. Manufacturing procurement manager

National average salary:$76,849 per year

Primary duties: Manufacturing procurement managers work at manufacturing plants and warehouses or in office settings to maintain relationships with suppliers or vendors. This is a unique opportunity for retired engineers with a professional history in industrial or transportation engineering and an interest in sales. Depending on their employer's needs, they may also oversee transportation needs and weigh product quality before making large purchasing decisions. 

17. Electrical designer

National average salary: $83,961 per year

Primary duties: Electrical designers create blueprints and diagrams for electrical wiring systems. Retired electrical engineers can adapt well to this role and work on a freelance or contractual basis. They typically collaborate with construction crews and other engineering professionals on how to implement electrical wiring systems throughout a building. 

18. Software engineer consultant

National average salary: $88,421 per year

Primary duties: Software engineer consultants use their years of professional experience as software engineers to help businesses create and update software systems. They complete audits to measure security, speak with employees about their experiences and assist in developing software that aligns with their business needs. To become a software engineer consultant once you retire, highlight your professional work experiences and consider obtaining a consultant certification.

Related: What Is Software Consulting? (With Benefits and Tips)

19. Engineering project manager

National average salary: $97,718 per year

Primary duties: Engineering project managers work for engineering companies or firms to provide leadership and guidance to a team of engineers. This role is a good fit for retired engineers as it allows them to step back and take on a more managerial role. In this role, they communicate with more senior management officials about project objectives, ensure their team meets deadlines and find creative solutions to budgeting limitations. 

Related: ​​Understanding Project Management for Engineers

20. Engineering manager

National average salary: $114,410 per year

Primary duties: Engineering managers oversee all engineering employees within the engineering department at a company. Retired engineers who want to focus more on administrative and managerial tasks can adapt to this role with ease. In this role, they're responsible for dividing their employees into teams to complete individual engineering projects. They also have a responsibility to set objectives and expectations for their staff to work toward. 

Related: Engineering Manager Cover Letter Examples and Templates

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