The short answer is a definite yes. The market for these specialized engineers is white-hot right now, especially in Texas and several other western states.
Populations are growing significantly in many large metropolitan areas throughout the United States. There is also an enormous infrastructure spending bill making its way through Congress. These and other factors are creating huge demands for real estate and infrastructure development professionals, especially civil engineers.
Careers in Land Development Engineering
Any civil engineer specializing in land development engineering knows that the projects you will work on are as diverse as the skills and experience required for the position. If you’re not currently specializing in the field, you may be considering a career move.
So let’s start with a basic definition. From online learning site Online Schools Report:
Land development design is an essential part of every developmental plan. It spells out exactly how the transformational activities required for that plot of land will take place. It typically starts with a feasibility study, which involves carefully drawn concepts and blueprints, which set out where and how activities and development will take place, including topography, geotechnics, any environmental impacts or risks, zoning, and use of land.
After the feasibility study stage, site analysis typically takes place. Then, the conceptual design takes place; this is the initial concept plan for the development that’s intended to go ahead on the land. The schematic design comes next, which involves site usage, site layout, and building configurations. Scales and dimensions usually come into play for the first time in this stage.
This is a pretty good definition to get started with. So now let’s look at what you can expect from a career in the land development field, and how long the current boom could last.
What Are the Salary Ranges and Growth Potential for Land Development Engineers?
According to the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), the median annual salary for a civil engineer in the United States is right around $109,000.
Now bear in mind that, since “median” means that half of the people in the field make more, and half make less, experience matters. Years in the field, relevant experience, certifications, etc. will all come to bear when negotiating salary and compensation.
There were no specific salary categories for land development engineers in the report, but they should be expected to fall within the broader civil engineering category. These specialized civil engineers are land transformation experts, and they bring a broad spectrum of skills and experience to the table. Compensation and salary should be expected to be commensurate with the candidate’s experience and overall qualifications.
The land development field is extremely competitive, as pointed out in a recent article by the Texas ASCE. But by partnering with a focused civil engineering recruiter like Nearterm, and engaging in some professional due diligence, candidates should be able to find an extremely rewarding career opportunity as a land development engineer.
So Where Are the Best Opportunities?
From the same ASCE article referenced above, two of the top ten cities for civil engineers are right here in Texas! The ASCE report took cost of living, salary, and available jobs into consideration to come up with an overall lifestyle and career opportunity index when they made the recommendations. Houston and Dallas both came out with high marks, with Houston coming in at number one!
You don’t have to look far if Texas is on your radar as a great place for a fulfilling professional engineering career in land development.
What Are the Professional Requirements?
No matter where you are in your career, you should always pursue the licensure and certifications necessary to enhance your professional engineering status. This means, at a minimum, the Fundamentals of Engineering exam for recent graduates. The Principles and Practice of Engineering exam is the next step for engineers who have been in the field for at least four years.
Proper professional licensure ensures your employer that you have the proper technical, educational, and ethical background to practice as an engineer at the state level.
The National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES) is also a great resource for more information on licensure and certifications.
What Does the Future Look Like?
It looks like this boom will continue for the foreseeable future, especially in high-growth geographical regions like Texas. Houston and Dallas, for example, are two cities that have significantly expanding populations. That means a demand for more infrastructure, housing, and real estate development in general.
Public projects at the federal, state, and municipal levels are also creating increased demands for civil engineers. The future definitely looks bright.
How Do I Pursue a Career in Land Development Engineering?
This is the easy part. Get in touch with us today. We have clients who are looking for land development engineers. There are also excellent career opportunities out there for civil engineers of all stripes right now.
You might be new to the civil engineering profession, you might have years of experience, or maybe you’re somewhere in the middle. Maybe you’re looking to change your career path or relocate to Texas?
At Nearterm we work tirelessly with job seekers to help them find their dream job, and with companies to help them find the perfect candidate. Are you a hiring manager or human resources manager with an engineering job search, or searches, underway? We can help.
Call us today at (855) 646-4668, or get in touch online. Our expert recruiters are waiting for your call.