Top Design Engineer Interview Questions with Example Answers [2022]

Prepare for your Design Engineer interview by going through these most asked Design Engineer interview questions. Additionally, get access to sample answers and interviewer's expectations.

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  • Question: How do you work in a team?
  • Question Overview: Design engineers must be able to work well with others. The ideal candidate will explain how they work in a team. Do they prefer to work alone or with a group? What is their leadership style? Do they prefer to be the leader or the follower?

    Sample Answer: I enjoy working in a team because it allows me to bounce ideas off of others. I like to be the leader of the group because I enjoy being the one to come up with new ideas.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Ability to work in a team
    • - Leadership skills
    • - Ability to work well with others

  • Question: If steel and wood having same cross section area and same force is applied on it, then stress in both will be different or same?
  • Question Overview: The ideal candidate will have a strong understanding of basic engineering concepts. Focus on their answer and how they explain the difference between the two materials. Is the applicant able to give you a detailed explanation?

    Sample Answer: Steel and wood have different properties. Steel is a much stronger material than wood, so it will be able to handle more stress than wood. Answer: The stress in both will be different. Wood is a material that is more flexible than steel. Steel has a higher tensile strength than wood. Answer: The stress in both will be different. Wood is a material that is more flexible than steel. Steel has a higher tensile strength than wood.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Knowledge of basic engineering concepts
    • - Ability to explain complex engineering concepts
    • - Confidence in oneself

  • Question: What are you best at?
  • Question Overview: The ideal candidate will have many strengths. Focus on what the applicant is best at and how it relates to the position. Is the applicant a critical thinker? Are they a good communicator? What are their strengths in relation to the position?

    Sample Answer: I'm best at communicating with others. I'm able to break down complex engineering ideas for clients and colleagues.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Ability to think critically
    • - Excellent communication skills
    • - Ability to work well with others

  • Question: Tell me about a time when you were not the leader of your team.
  • Question Overview: The ideal candidate will be able to work well with others. Focus on what the applicant did to help the team succeed. Did they take on a leadership role? Did they help other team members with their tasks? Were they able to work well with other leaders?

    Sample Answer: I was not the leader of my team when I was working on a project for a client. I took on the role of a project manager and helped my team members stay on track. I was able to delegate tasks and make sure that everyone was working on the right things.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Ability to work well with others
    • - Leadership skills
    • - Ability to take on a leadership role

  • Question: What is the body effect?
  • Question Overview: The body effect is a phenomenon that occurs when a design engineer's body is in the way of their work. It's important to identify if the applicant has experienced this before and how they handled it. Did they find a way to move around their body? Did they find a way to move their body around the work?

    Sample Answer: The body effect is when your body is in the way of your work. I have experienced this before and I was able to move my body out of the way so that I could continue working.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Ability to adapt to different situations
    • - Problem solving skills
    • - Ability to handle pressure

  • Question: Why do you want to work for us?
  • Question Overview: The ideal candidate will have a good understanding of the company's values and mission. They will also be able to explain why they are a good fit for the company. Focus on the applicant's answer to see if they are a good match for your company.

    Sample Answer: I want to work for your company because I have heard great things about it. I know that you are a great company that cares about its employees and clients. I am a hard worker who is willing to do whatever it takes to make sure that your clients are happy.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Passion for the company
    • - Ability to work well with others
    • - Understanding of the company's mission

  • Question: Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
  • Question Overview: The ideal candidate will have a clear vision of where they want to be in the future. Focus on what the applicant's career goals are. Is the applicant looking to move up in their current position or move into a different industry?

    Sample Answer: I see myself in a management role in five years. I'm confident that I will be able to take on a leadership role at my company and continue to grow as an engineer.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Confidence in oneself
    • - Ambition
    • - Desire to learn and grow

  • Question: How will you add value in the role?
  • Question Overview: The ideal candidate will have a clear understanding of what value means to the role. They should be able to explain how they will add value to the company. Focus on how the applicant will add value in the role. Is it through their education, experience or personality?

    Sample Answer: I will add value to this role by using my education and experience to create a design that is both innovative and cost-effective.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Ability to add value in the role
    • - Confidence in oneself
    • - Knowledge of the role

  • Question: How would you handle a situation where the customer wanted the design 'this' way, but you absolutely knew it wouldn't work 'that' way?
  • Question Overview: Design engineers must have the ability to work well with clients. The ideal candidate will be able to explain how they handled a situation where the client wanted something that wasn't feasible. Were they able to compromise? Did they find a way to make the design work?

    Sample Answer: I would explain to the client why the design wouldn't work if it was built the way they wanted it. I would then offer a few alternatives that would work better.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Ability to work well with clients
    • - Ability to compromise
    • - Ability to think outside of the box

  • Question: How would you find the number of gas stations in the United States?
  • Question Overview: The ideal candidate will have a variety of methods to find the answer to this question. The applicant should be able to use a variety of resources, such as the internet, books and other people. The ideal candidate will also be able to explain the steps they took to find the answer.

    Sample Answer: I would start by using Google Maps to find the number of gas stations in each state. I would then use a book or website to find the population of each state. Finally, I would divide the number of gas stations by the population to find the average number of gas stations per person.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Ability to find information using a variety of resources
    • - Critical thinking skills
    • - Problem solving skills

  • Question: What are your career goals?
  • Question Overview: The ideal candidate will have a clear idea of what they want to accomplish in their career. They will be able to explain how they plan to achieve those goals. Focus on the steps the applicant has taken to reach their goals. Have they taken any classes or seminars? Have they volunteered for any organizations?

    Sample Answer: My career goal is to become a lead design engineer. I plan to achieve this by taking more classes and seminars to increase my knowledge of design engineering. I also plan on volunteering at a local engineering firm to gain more experience.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Ability to set and achieve goals
    • - Confidence in oneself
    • - Ambition

  • Question: Tell me about a time when you had to persuade someone in the office?
  • Question Overview: Design engineers must be able to persuade others to see their point of view. Focus on what the applicant did to convince someone else. Did they use their interpersonal skills to get their point across? Did they use logic and reasoning? Did they use a combination of both?

    Sample Answer: I had to persuade my manager to let me work on a project that I was passionate about. I was able to show him that I was capable of handling the project and that it would be beneficial for the company.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Ability to persuade others
    • - Strong communication skills
    • - Persuasive personality

  • Question: How do you handle conflicts with your coworkers?
  • Question Overview: Design engineers must be able to work well with others. Focus on the applicant's ability to resolve conflicts and work well with others. Is the applicant able to explain a time when they had to work with a difficult coworker?

    Sample Answer: I have a strong ability to work well with others. I have never had a problem working with coworkers. Answer: I have had to work with a difficult coworker before. We were both working on the same project and we weren't seeing eye-to-eye. I was able to sit down with him and explain my point of view. We were able to come up with a solution that worked for both of us.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Ability to work well with others
    • - Ability to resolve conflicts
    • - Ability to work under pressure

  • Question: What do you know about ABB?
  • Question Overview: The ideal candidate will have a basic understanding of the company. They should know the company's history, products and services. Focus on what the applicant knows about the company. Is the candidate able to explain why they are interested in working for ABB?

    Sample Answer: I know that ABB is a global leader in power and automation technologies. I am very interested in working for ABB because of its reputation as a top engineering firm.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Knowledge of ABB's history
    • - Products and services
    • - Interest in working for ABB

  • Question: How would you solve this problem?
  • Question Overview: Design engineers must be able to solve problems in a timely manner. The ideal candidate will be able to explain a time when they were able to solve a problem. Focus on the steps they took to solve the problem and how they were able to fix it.

    Sample Answer: I was working on a design project for a client. I had to find a way to fix a design flaw that was discovered after the project was completed. I had to go back and make changes in the CAD software.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Ability to solve problems
    • - Critical thinking skills
    • - Problem solving skills

  • Question: What's the most complex system you've ever modeled?
  • Question Overview: The ideal candidate will have experience modeling complex systems. Focus on what the system was and how the applicant broke it down. Did they have to learn a new software program to complete the task? Did they have to work with a team?

    Sample Answer: The most complex system I've ever modeled was a water treatment plant. I had to learn how to use AutoCAD and AutoPLANT to model the piping and equipment. It was a challenge, but I was able to get it done with the help of my team.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Level of expertise in modeling complex systems
    • - Ability to work with others
    • - Ability to learn new software programs

  • Question: How long have you worked for [their client]?
  • Question Overview: The ideal candidate will have a long tenure with their client. Focus on how long they've worked for the client and why they enjoy working there. Is there a specific project that the design engineer enjoyed working on?

    Sample Answer: I've been working for [their client] for four years. I enjoy working with them because they are very flexible and understanding. I've been able to work on many different projects for them and have learned a lot from them.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Length of time with client
    • - Level of expertise with client
    • - Level of responsibility with client

  • Question: What is the difference between a good designer and an excellent one?
  • Question Overview: The ideal candidate will have a clear understanding of what makes a good designer and an excellent one. The applicant should be able to explain how they fit into the equation. What makes them a good designer? How do they strive to be an excellent one?

    Sample Answer: A good designer is someone who is able to create a design that is on time and on budget. An excellent designer is someone who is able to create a design that is on time, on budget and meets the client's needs.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Ability to explain the difference between a good and an excellent designer
    • - Confidence in oneself
    • - Ability to think critically

  • Question: What is your experience with Pro E and using Workcenter?
  • Question Overview: Pro E is a computer-aided design software that's used in many different industries. Workcenter is a software that's used to manage the entire design process. Focus on the applicant's experience with both programs. Is the applicant familiar with both programs and able to use them well?

    Sample Answer: I have been using Pro E for five years and Workcenter for three years. I am very familiar with both programs and I am confident in my abilities to use them.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Level of expertise in software mentioned
    • - Opinion of computer-aided design software
    • - Confidence in oneself