Insights for technology professionals

The top 5 skills to look for in a candidate when hiring a new electrical engineering grad

Posted on February 7, 2023 by Nick Trompert


As an organization that specializes in Semiconductor talent solutions, Talent-101 understands the importance of selecting the most suitable electrical engineers for your organization. In today's highly competitive job market, it is imperative to identify the most essential attributes to search for in a potential electrical engineering graduate. Here are our top five:

  1. Technical Proficiency: Undoubtedly, the most vital characteristic to look for in an electrical engineering graduate is a robust technical foundation. This encompasses knowledge of circuit design, layout, embedded applications, and industry-specific software. For instance, if your company specializes in Digital semiconductor chips, it would be beneficial to seek out a candidate with experience using RTL, UVM, EDA software, etc.. Additionally, it is essential for the candidate to possess a comprehensive understanding of electrical engineering principles.

  2. Problem-Solving Aptitude: Engineers are frequently tasked with resolving complex challenges; therefore, it is crucial to seek out candidates who possess a natural inclination for finding creative solutions to problems. The capability to think critically and devise innovative solutions is a vital trait for any electrical engineer. During the interview process, give them a question that might not be in their interest of field of study, such as "How would you approach moving a mountain?" to see how they work through issues.

  3. Communication Acumen: Engineers often work in teams and must have the ability to effectively convey their ideas and solutions. Look for candidates who possess the ability to explain their thought process clearly and succinctly. Engineers must be able to communicate efficiently with other team members, including those who may not have the same level of technical expertise. Talent-101 recommends having them give a presentation about themselves and why they would be a fit for your organization.

  4. Adaptability: The electrical engineering field is continually evolving; thus, it is crucial to hire candidates who possess the ability to adapt to new technologies and processes. The aptitude to quickly pick up new skills and adjust to change is imperative for electrical engineers. For new grads it’s important to part of Engineering Orgs like IEEE, IET, etc. They give member lots of information on new technologies, methodologies as well as professional networking.

  5. Project Management Expertise: Engineers are often responsible for managing projects from start to finish. Look for candidates who have experience with project management, and who possess the ability to manage time and resources effectively. New Grads should be able to articulate examples of times in internships or classes where they have had to use project management skills like time management, resource allocation and more.

When searching for a new electrical engineering graduate, it is essential to keep these five attributes in mind. By focusing on technical proficiency, problem-solving aptitude, communication acumen, adaptability, and project management expertise, you can be confident that you are hiring electrical engineers who are well-suited to meet the demands of the electrical engineering field and make positive contributions to your organization. Additionally, it is worth noting that even though these are the top five attributes to look for, it is also important to consider the candidate's personality, motivation, and ambition, as they are also key elements that will make the candidate a good fit for your company.

Nick Trompert

Nick Trompert is a Sr. Manager. He is responsible for connecting with the best engineering and information technology talent and resources in the world. He is one of the founders of Talent 101 and joined full time after college.