Engineering Career Ladders

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As engineering organizations grow and add more complexity with team members at different levels of experience, they also need to create clarity: the list of job levels, and what each role does. Done well, a career ladder can limit bias and provide a framework for hiring, paying, and promoting. Note: The articles below are often an introduction to the company's level guide, and the actual career ladder is a PDF or spreadsheet linked to from the article.
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  2. Intro to Standard Engineering Roles

    The first step in understanding what goes in to an engineering career ladder framework is to understand Job Titles and roles.
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  3. Common Engineering Career Ladders Challenges

    These are common challenges people face when gaining expertise in engineering career ladders. Tackling these challenges head-on can help you learn this skill quicker.

    I'm not sure what skills I need to focus on to get to the next level
    Struggling with setting clear goals and expectations for myself in order to advance in my career.
    I could be better at communicating my strengths and areas for improvement to my manager using the terms of our career ladder
    I'm really unsure how our company career framework applies to my specific role
    It's hard to create a career ladder that recognizes a diverse range of skills and experiences
    Add your own to track your progress and inspire others
  4. Industry-Standard Expectations for Engineering Career Ladders

    These are performance expectations for engineering career ladders at different competency levels. Understanding these expectations can help you measure your own proficiency and orient your growth.

    Recognize the importance of engineering career ladders. Eager to learn the basics and apply best practices in the workplace.
    Understand the purpose and benefits of engineering career ladders. Participate in the career ladder development process by providing feedback and suggestions.
    Contribute to the development and refinement of career ladder criteria and expectations. Use career ladders to set goals and identify areas for professional development.
    Coach and mentor junior engineers on how to use career ladders to develop their careers. Provide input and feedback on career ladder assessments for team members.
    Lead the development and refinement of career ladders for the engineering organization. Advocate for the use of career ladders to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion within the company.
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  5. Building a Career Ladder

    This section provides guides to building and launching a career ladder.
  6. Engineering Career Ladders From Leading Companies

    Leading companies have established career ladders for their engineers. These ladders typically include multiple levels of advancement, with specific requirements and responsibilities for each level. Companies may also offer Mentorship and training programs to support career growth.
  7. Leveling Up as an Engineer

    Leveling up as an engineer requires continuous Learning And Development. This can include pursuing advanced degrees, attending Conferences, and participating in training programs. It also involves taking on new challenges and responsibilities.
  8. Common Engineering Career Ladders Wins

    Here are common milestones and achievements that people reach when learning engineering career ladders. You can use them as inspiration to reach your own goals.

    Created a clear and comprehensive engineering career ladder for the team that's at the right level of detail
    A higher level of transparency has improved morale and reduced turnover on the eng team
    The career ladder helps me communicate my strengths and areas for improvement to my manager
    I got great feedback on my contributions to the career framework effort
    I used our career ladder to create actionable growth plans for my team members
    Add your own to track your progress and inspire others