Recently we discussed what information technology entails and what IT professionals do. Here, we’ll review how to become a hardware engineer.

This is an excellent career opportunity where you can apply your computer science knowledge to create something tangible. If you want to build computers and other electronic devices, there is no better job than that of a hardware engineer.

Here we'll discuss why you should consider a career as a hardware engineer, what responsibilities you'll likely have in the role, why you should complete a degree program before attempting to enter the field, what you'll learn and how to get started.

If you want to launch a lucrative, lifelong career helping organizations build complex technology, this is the perfect place to start.

After you’ve learned everything you need to know about starting a career in this industry, fill out our information request form to receive additional details about our 100% online Bachelor’s Degree in Information Technology. If you’re ready to get started, submit your application today.

What do Hardware Engineers Actually Do?

Hardware engineers are responsible for designing, developing, and testing computer hardware. They work with electronic circuits, microprocessors, circuit boards, and other components to create innovative products. 

In some cases, they may also work with software developers to ensure that new hardware is compatible with existing software systems.

The responsibilities of a hardware engineer may vary depending on their place of employment, but can generally be summed up as follows:

  • Designing computer systems and components from scratch.
  • Working with electronic circuits and microprocessors.
  • Testing prototypes and products for quality assurance.
  • Coordinating with software developers to ensure compatibility.
  • Manufacturing and assembling products.

The typical day-to-day work for a hardware engineer is very hands-on, as they may be required to physically test products and prototypes. This can involve tasks such as soldering electronic components onto circuit boards or assembling products in a lab setting.

Hardware engineers must also be able to think logically and have an excellent understanding of computer science principles and best practices. They must be able to work independently as well as collaboratively in order to meet deadlines and to satisfy complex design requirements.

Is Becoming a Hardware Engineer a Good Career Option?

Yes! This is a great opportunity for you to get involved in an interesting, complex, challenging, and rewarding industry helping to improve complex technology products.

There are three specific reasons to consider getting into this field, including:

  1. This field is stable, with the Bureau of Labor Statistics projecting that employment for this role will rise 5% between 2021 and 2031.
  2. Hardware engineers get to play an important role in pushing the limits of technology, as they are responsible for designing, testing, and manufacturing computer hardware.
  3. Hardware engineers tend to earn excellent compensation packages, with competitive salaries and a high average annual income.

Knowing that the field is growing and that you’ll get to put your technology skills to use making something tangible, why wouldn’t you want to get into the industry?

What Skills & Abilities are Needed to Become a Successful Hardware Engineer?

As you can imagine, it takes certain abilities and skills to become a successful hardware engineer. 

Some of these skills are highly technical, while others are focused on soft skills. Here is a look at some of the most important skills for this role:

  • Logical thinking. The ability to think logically is essential in any career field but particularly so when working with computers and technology. Hardware engineers must be able to reason through problems and come up with logical solutions that will meet the needs of their clients or employers as efficiently as possible.
  • Communication. Successful communication is also key for hardware engineers since they often work closely with software developers, team leads, managers, executives, and other employees within an organization or business setting.
  • Analytical thinking. Hardware engineers must be able to break down complex problems into smaller pieces that they can understand and solve.
  • Problem-solving skills. In order to design effective solutions, hardware engineers must be able to identify and troubleshoot issues quickly.
  • Creativity. As technology evolves, so too must the products created by hardware engineers. They must constantly come up with new ideas for systems and components that are both efficient and innovative.
  • Technical aptitude. A deep understanding of computer science principles are essential for success as a hardware engineer.
  • Teamwork skills. Hardware engineers often work collaboratively with software developers to ensure products are compatible.

Hardware engineers must be able to communicate effectively with other members of their team as well as clients and perhaps even customers, because they may be asked to explain complex concepts in a way that is easy for others to understand.

Do I Really Need a Degree to Become a Hardware Engineer?

Although there are some exceptions, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, most employers require potential hardware engineers to have at least a bachelor’s degree.

To prepare for this role, we suggest earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Information Technology

The reason this degree is so well-suited for prospective hardware engineers is that the role of a hardware engineer requires an understanding of both computer science and electrical engineering concepts. Getting your B.S. in IT will give you the opportunity to learn about both of these fields in-depth, as well as to develop other important skills that are essential for success in this career path.

Remember that this role serves a critical function for modern organizations since it is responsible for maintaining the hardware and software systems on which they rely. Because of this, most employers prefer to hire candidates who have a higher level of education and experience.

One of the best ways to earn the trust of a recruiter attempting to fill this position is to complete CSU Global’s online Bachelor’s Degree in Information Technology, which will prove that you’ve got the skills and knowledge needed to become a successful hardware engineer.

What Will I Learn When Studying Information Technology?

There are many components that go into the design and development of computer hardware, including but not limited to circuit boards, memory devices, microprocessors, and other complex systems. 

To build these components requires an understanding of both electrical engineering concepts as well as computer science principles and best practices.

One way to gain this knowledge is by earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Information Technology from CSU Global. Our program was designed to provide you with critical work-related skills and includes training on relevant subjects like:

  • Web Design and Development
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Basic Programming
  • Information Systems and Security
  • Database Management

This program is the ideal way to prepare for a successful, lifelong career in IT, whether you choose to become a hardware engineer or pursue another specialty within this industry.

What Can I Do to Increase My Chances of Success?

To become a successful hardware engineer, you need to understand how computers and other electronics work, as well as have some knowledge of software development. 

If you’re just starting out in your career, the most important thing you can do is earn a relevant education credential, but you may also want to consider:

  • Gaining experience by working as a technician or intern in a hardware engineering role.
  • Volunteering your time to help develop free and open-source software projects.
  • Attending industry conferences and workshops related to computer science and hardware engineering.
  • Networking with professionals in the field, both online and offline.
  • Completing certification programs from vendors such as Microsoft, Cisco, and CompTIA.

Another way to prove that you’re prepared for the role is complete an accredited certification program, which focuses on developing job-specific skills and abilities.

According to, four of the best certifications for hardware engineers include:

  • Engineer In Training Certification (EIT)
  • Software Engineering Management Associate Engineer
  • Certified LabVIEW Developer (CLD) 
  • Software Engineering Master Certification (SEMC)

The best way to increase your chances of success in any field is to develop the combination of education, experience, and skills that employers are seeking. 

Should I Get My Degree Online?

Yes, no matter which higher education path you choose to pursue, we certainly suggest getting your degree and credentials online rather than in person.

Studying online offers many benefits to in-person learning, but the most important is that it allows students access from anywhere at any time.

Online learning also gives you the flexibility to arrange your study schedule around your responsibilities, be that a full-time job, family commitments, or other important tasks.

CSU Global’s fully online programs also offer several other excellent benefits, including:

  • No requirements to show up at set times or in physical locations.
  • Monthly class starts.
  • Accelerated courses.

If you're a working professional or you’ve got a busy family or social life, and you’ll need to balance other commitments with studying, then earning your degree online with us may be the ideal approach.

Why Should I Choose to Study at CSU Global?

CSU Global’s online Bachelor's Degree in Information Technology degree will prepare you to meet the challenges you’ll face attempting to launch your career as a hardware engineer. 

Our IT program is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and was designed to provide you with industry-relevant skills, ensuring you’re ready to provide value to any organization from day one.

Reasons to Choose our B.S. in IT Program

Our online B.S. in IT program has won several top rankings, including:

  • A #1 ranking for Top Low-Cost Online Bachelor’s in Computer and IT Programs from Great Value Colleges.
  • A #2 ranking for Best Online Bachelor’s Degrees in Information Technology from Cyber Degrees.
  • A #3 ranking for The Best Information Technology Degree Programs of 2021 from Best Value Schools.

CSU Global itself is also regarded as an industry leader in higher education, and recently won several important awards, including:

  • A #10 ranking for Best Online Colleges for ROI from OnlineU.
  • A #1 ranking for Best Online Colleges & Schools in Colorado from Best Accredited Colleges.
  • A #1 ranking for Best Online Colleges in Colorado from Best Colleges.

Finally, we offer competitive tuition rates and a tuition guarantee to ensure your rate won’t increase for as long as you remain enrolled with us.

To get additional details about our fully-accredited online Bachelor’s Degree in Information Technology please give us a call at (800) 462-7845, or fill out our Information Request Form