How to Hire a Civil Engineer

Does your growing business need a civil engineer? Besides being instrumental in completing your infrastructure project, a civil engineer can prepare engineering design documents and specifications.

Here are some tips to help you find great civil engineer candidates and make the right hire for your business.

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Civil engineers searching for jobs on Indeed*

61,357   

Job seekers that clicked civil engineer jobs

9,659          

Resumes for job seekers with civil engineer experience on Indeed

5,558

Civil engineer jobs that received clicks

What is the cost of hiring civil engineer?

  • Common salary in US: $86,545 yearly
  • Typical salaries range from $32,000$167,000 yearly
  • Find more information on Indeed Salary

*Indeed data (US) – April 2021

As of April 2021, civil engineer jobs in the US are very competitive compared to other job markets, with an average of 11 job seekers per civil engineer job.

Why hire a civil engineer?

Hiring a civil engineer can be the best decision you make for the successful completion of your infrastructure project. The right hire can help you adhere to construction guidelines, maintain project budgets and timelines, enforce project operational policies and comply with legal and government regulations. A great civil engineer can do the following:

• Design infrastructure projects by analyzing the project concept and creating the architectural drawings and plans
• Evaluate the engineering design, conduct environmental studies and gather data
• Develop a construction plan, a schedule and guidelines

Deciding between a full-time vs freelance civil engineer

You have the option of hiring a full-time or freelance civil engineer depending on your needs. A full-time civil engineer is available at all times to handle the workload immediately. You have a trusted engineer on staff and know what that person can handle with consistent, high-quality results.

A freelance civil engineer is an option if you only need engineering help occasionally. Maybe the workload is too small to justify hiring a full-time engineer, or your needs fluctuate throughout the year. Another situation where a freelance civil engineer can work is if you need a specific type of engineer for one project. When those special needs arise, you can hire a freelance engineer with that expertise.

What are the types of civil engineers?

Civil engineering as a whole focuses on structures and infrastructure. Many civil engineers focus on a particular subdiscipline within this very broad field. The type of civil engineer you need varies based on your industry and business. Some types of civil engineers include:

  • Construction engineers: These engineers work on construction sites to make sure the structure goes up safely from start to finish.
  • Transportation engineers: This subspecialty helps design and maintain all types of transportation infrastructure for airports, roadways, railways, ports and other commercial transportation methods.
  • Structural engineers: This type of engineer focuses on buildings, bridges and similar structures and can help with designing, analyzing and maintaining them. 
  • Geotechnical engineers: This subspecialty has expertise in rock and soil structure and is important in construction projects to ensure the foundation works for the build.
  • Environmental engineers: These engineers analyze potential environmental impacts of projects and help protect the environment. Examples include solid waste management and water and air quality.

Where to find civil engineers

To find the right civil engineer for your business, consider trying out a few different recruiting strategies:

  • Hire civil engineer interns. After completing a civil engineering program, graduates usually start as an intern or engineer-in-training. Hiring these beginning engineers to work with your established engineers gives you a natural source of new full-time employees.
  • Go to civil engineering events. Attend conferences and networking events hosted by civil engineering organizations to meet qualified engineers.
  • Get involved in organizations. Being active in organizations such as the American Society of Civil Engineers helps you network. You might contribute to publications, join a committee or serve as a mentor through the organization to meet engineers and make your company well known in the industry.
  • Post your job online. Try posting your civil engineer job on Indeed to find and attract quality civil engineer candidates.

What are the types of civil engineers?

Civil engineering as a whole focuses on structures and infrastructure. Many civil engineers focus on a particular subdiscipline within this very broad field. The type of civil engineer you need varies based on your industry and business. Some types of civil engineers include:

  • Construction engineers: These engineers work on construction sites to make sure the structure goes up safely from start to finish.
  • Transportation engineers: This subspecialty helps design and maintain all types of transportation infrastructure for airports, roadways, railways, ports and other commercial transportation methods.
  • Structural engineers: This type of engineer focuses on buildings, bridges and similar structures and can help with designing, analyzing and maintaining them. 
  • Geotechnical engineers: This subspecialty has expertise in rock and soil structure and is important in construction projects to ensure the foundation works for the build.
  • Environmental engineers: These engineers analyze potential environmental impacts of projects and help protect the environment. Examples include solid waste management and water and air quality.

Writing a civil engineer job description

A good description is important in finding excellent civil engineer candidates. A civil engineer job description should include a thorough summary of the role with a detailed list of job duties and the necessary desired skills for the position.

When writing your civil engineer job description, consider including some or all of the following keywords to improve the visibility of your job posting. These are the most popular search terms leading to clicks on civil engineer jobs, according to Indeed data:

  • Civil engineer
  • Civil engineering
  • Engineer
  • Structural engineer
  • Civil engineering internship
  • Engineering
  • Environmental engineer
  • Project engineer
  • Civil engineering intern
  • Engineering internship

Interviewing civil engineer candidates

Strong candidates for civil engineer positions can answer questions regarding:

• Database design and planning
• Maintaining accuracy in engineering design, documentation and site development
• How they’ve maintained project timelines with respect to delivery, quality and cost

Need help coming up with interview questions? See our list of civil engineer interview questions for examples (with sample answers).

FAQs about how to hire a civil engineer

When should I hire a civil engineer?

When your company consistently requires the services of a civil engineer, hiring one in-house can be a cost-effective move. If you already have a civil engineer on board, you might be ready to expand when that employee can’t handle the full workload alone. You might also need to hire a civil engineer with a different subspecialty if your current engineers specialize in something else.

What does a civil engineer wear?

A civil engineer’s job can take place in different settings, and this affects what they wear. Part of the job includes office work, which calls for business casual or whatever the general dress code is for your office. When out in the field, a civil engineer needs to wear comfortable and protective clothing based on the environment. On construction sites, the civil engineer likely needs a hard hat, steel toe work boots, a safety vest and similar safety gear.

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