The creation of new technology and software have greatly impacted the tech industry over the past few decades. In the engineering and design world, AutoCAD in particular has revolutionized drafting, making it much more efficient. There are many jobs that use AutoCAD out there, from mechanical engineers to interior designers.
This computer-aided design software allows the user to draw both 2D and 3D digital designs, which is why AutoCAD is in high demand. If you really want to find out, “What is AutoCAD?” read on. We’ll go over the best jobs that use AutoCAD, and how you can land one.
What Is AutoCAD?
AutoCAD is a software program used primarily by architects and engineers for technical drawings of structures. The first version of the program was released in 1982 by Autodesk, and it’s now available in 14 languages, and can run on all Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android. The software allows designers and engineers to draw and edit 2D and 3D designs more quickly and accurately than they previously could by hand.
The benefits of using AutoCAD include drawing to scale, easier layout and viewing, and improved accuracy. It also allows the user to easily identify design weaknesses, and all projects can be stored in the cloud, saving time and resources. With AutoCAD, it is easier for designers from all fields to complete their tasks on time, save money, and have little or no errors.
Is AutoCAD in High Demand?
AutoCAD is in high demand because it is one of the most widely used CAD software programs. You will find it listed as a prerequisite to employment in any architectural or engineering role.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, career opportunities in civil engineering, which is the most common engineering field, are expected to grow by 8% between 2020 and 2030. Similarly, the number of available jobs in mechanical engineering is expected to grow by 7 percent over the same period.
This is close to the overall growth expected across all jobs in the US, which the BLS expects to be at around 7 percent. So, you can rest assured that AutoCAD will remain in high demand in the coming years.
Types of AutoCAD Jobs
Jobs in the architecture, drafting, engineering, and design industries all utilize AutoCAD frequently. In the section below, we’ll look closely at some of these job types.
Architects are among the biggest AutoCAD users. They use the program to draw models, blueprints, and floor plans for commercial buildings, office buildings, and houses. In this case, they use AutoCAD mostly to develop 3D designs, using its built-in tools to detect and solve possible weaknesses in their structures. Among the architectural jobs out there are urban planners, surveyors, and landscape architects.
The primary role of drafters is to create 2D and 3D designs for construction purposes. They use AutoCAD to transfer designs created by architects into usable technical plans, which they will then share with a team. In this subsector, you’ll find mechanical drafters, civil drafters, electronics drafters, and architectural drafters.
Engineering jobs all involve building something, whether it’s a skyscraper or an electric engine. All engineers use AutoCAD to draw individual parts of their model, as well as the broader floorplans or outline for the project. Some possible engineering jobs are mechanical engineer, civil engineers, and electrical engineers.
Fashion Design Jobs
AutoCAD is gaining popularity in the fashion design world, helping designers create new sketches, patterns, and prints more efficiently. It saves time by allowing the designers to adjust the size, color, and pattern using virtual models, leading to fewer adjustments later. Some jobs in this field that require autoCAD are senior designer and CAD textile designer.
Industrial Design Jobs
AutoCAD helps industrial designers create and document their designs easily with its built-in tools. Industrial designers get to work with many software tools throughout the stages of their work, but CAD is one of the most important. Some of the jobs available in this field include interior designer, automotive designer, and film set designer.
How to Establish a Career in AutoCAD
Starting a career in AutoCAD isn’t difficult. As long as you follow the necessary steps and are willing to put in the work, you can start a successful AutoCAD career. Follow the steps below to start your career journey on the right foot.
- Get an education. Getting an education is an important first step, but it doesn’t mean you need to get a degree from a university’s engineering department. Any kind of postsecondary education that instills the required knowledge and skills is acceptable. Some popular choices are a four-year college degree, community college, or a coding bootcamp.
- Take a professional class or course. Taking a professional course on AutoCAD after getting formal education will enhance your skills and strengthen your industry knowledge. This might also be a good time to try out a coding bootcamp.
- Get certified. Certifications are evidence of your skills in a particular field. There’s no better way to prove to potential employers that you are a professional AutoCAD designer than by signing up for a certification program. Once you pass the final certification exam, you’ll be ready to show prospective employers your skills.
- Build a portfolio. During your education, you will have worked on AutoCAD projects to practice and perfect your skills. While your degree and certifications are an excellent way to showcase your expertise, your portfolio will further prove that you are capable and can work with the software efficiently.
- Apply for entry-level jobs. Now that you’ve completed all of the steps above, you’ll be ready to begin a rewarding career as an AutoCAD expert. You can start by applying for entry-level designer jobs, as it’s the best way to break into any industry.
The 15 Best Jobs That Use AutoCAD
|Job Title||Average Salary||Job Outlook|
*Job outlook has been sourced from the Bureau of Labor Statistics report on industrial engineers.
**Job outlook has been sourced from the Bureau of Labor Statistics report on civil engineers.
***Job outlook has been sourced from the Bureau of Labor Statistics report on CAD drafters.
What Careers Use AutoCAD? An In-Depth List
Electrical engineers apply the principles of electronics and electricity in their designs. They’re also paid one of the highest annual salaries on our list. Electrical engineers use AutoCAD to create and test electronic devices, control systems, and equipment.
Construction managers plan and oversee building projects, ensuring that all deadlines are met, and that the projects are done correctly and within budget. Construction managers oversee construction and architectural projects and use AutoCAD to analyze and manage their designs. Their end-goal is to ensure that the plans are up to standard.
Mechanical engineers handle every aspect of mechanical systems and devices. There are different specialties within this field that professionals can choose to focus on. With AutoCAD and other technical skills, mechanical engineers create and develop models, resolving any issues before moving to production.
Industrial designers create concepts and designs for manufactured products. They work from inception of the project and take all factors into consideration, including the function, aesthetics, budget, and product usability. AutoCAD is one of the best software programs for getting these tasks done quickly without sacrificing quality.
Civil engineers design, develop, and maintain construction projects. Their main focus is on transportation projects like roads, bridges, tunnels, dams, and airports. These professionals need AutoCAD for their site design and layout to ensure accuracy, speed, and quality.
Once you’ve met the requirements to become an architect, you’ll be ready to create designs and technical drawings used for construction projects. Architects use their knowledge of building to ensure that new and existing structures are functional, safe, aesthetically pleasing, and sustainable.
Urban planners develop and review sites and plans for community growth. The plans detail various ways they intend to use the land. For those plans to be approved, they must make sure their plans serve the population in some way. Urban planners use AutoCAD to prepare their designs.
Fashion designers are fashion experts who design and create clothing, shoes, and accessories. They research fashion trends, develop patterns, work with a design team, and oversee the production process. They use AutoCAD to create their designs before they go into production.
Manufacturing engineers are tasked with designing products that are in line with their clients’ requests. They must also check for ways the product can be improved, maintain the product’s quality, and manage the manufacturing budget. They use AutoCAD to draw their plans and make sure they are technically accurate.
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Plumbing engineers develop detailed plans for plumbing and water supply systems of a building. They work on both new and existing buildings to ensure that drainage and water systems are functional. AutoCAD aids them in creating, analyzing, and modifying their blueprints.
Structural engineers design structures that can withstand the forces of nature they could be exposed to, such as inclement weather and natural disasters. Structural engineers improve the present state of buildings and ensure that they are up to standard.
A project engineer is responsible for the engineering details of a project. They seek to guarantee that a project runs smoothly from the planning phase to completion. Using AutoCAD, they certify that the project’s plans are accurate and error-free before production begins.
CAD drafters collect the technical drawings, plans, blueprints, and notes pertaining to a project and check for any errors. CAD drafters should be confident that they can meet their client’s specifications and project objectives. They must be highly skilled in AutoCAD software.
Interior designers are design experts who handle the design, functionality, and visuals of a building’s interior. They have to assess the space and select appropriate decorations that meet the furnishing style and design needs of the client. To bring their design to life, they often use AutoCAD to render designs and speed up their work process.
CAD technicians use computer software to create electronic designs for structures or machines. They generally use top CAD programs such as AutoCAD to bring the design to life in 2D or 3D. They collaborate closely with architects to create design models of buildings and machinery. They also design and implement electrical systems.
Should You Get a Job in AutoCAD?
You should get a job in AutoCAD if you’re interested in starting a design-related career and are willing to put in the time it takes to build up your AutoCAD skills. You can get started by either obtaining a formal degree or attending a coding bootcamp. In a world where technology is dominant, being skilled in a software program like AutoCAD will be a good step toward a rewarding career.
Jobs That Use AutoCAD FAQ
The average salary for AutoCAD jobs ranges from $47,000 for a CAD technician all the way to $100,000, for an electrical engineer. The pay will vary depending on your job, industry, and experience level.
If you learn AutoCAD, you can work as an electrical engineer, architect, mechanical engineer, CAD drafter, CAD technician, civil engineer, or construction manager.
There are many jobs available to people who learn AutoCAD. But the kind of job you get will vary depending on your education level, skill level, and experience. For instance, if you have a degree in engineering along with AutoCAD skills, you will qualify for positions in civil engineering, mechanical drafting, architectural drafting, and more.
Working in a job that is very specific to AutoCAD, such as a CAD technician, might not be a good career path. But if you combine your CAD knowledge with other relevant skills, you can have a rewarding career. For instance, a civil drafter with additional AutoCAD skills will have a more promising career than someone who only has AutoCAD skills.
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