There are currently an estimated 73,600 computer hardware engineers in the United States. The computer hardware engineer job market is expected to grow by 5.4% between 2016 and 2026.

How employable are computer hardware engineers?

CareerExplorer rates computer hardware engineers with a D employability rating, meaning this career should provide weak employment opportunities for the foreseeable future. Over the next 10 years, it is expected the US will need 8,200 computer hardware engineers. That number is based on 4,000 additional computer hardware engineers, and the retirement of 4,200 existing computer hardware engineers.

Are computer hardware engineers in demand?

Technological innovation in the computer industry is focused more on software than on hardware. This fact exerts negative pressure on the job outlook and demand for computer hardware engineers. Declining employment in the manufacturing industries that hire many of these engineers will also hinder growth in the field. This loss, however, may be somewhat tempered by openings at computer consulting and hardware start-up firms, to which some manufacturers outsource their hardware design. While intense competition from foreign companies may diminish overall domestic opportunities, demand for the expertise of computer hardware engineers may rise from the need to embed computer chips in new-generation automobiles, household appliances, medical equipment, and other devices. Competition for all available positions is projected to be strong, due to an occupational growth rate which is below average and a rapidly increasing number of degrees granted in this discipline. These factors allow employers to get maximum value for their investment by hiring and retaining only the best applicants who are familiar with the most up-to-date technology. In such a competitive market, job candidates who have earned a Master’s Degree in computer engineering, electrical engineering, or business administration enhance their employability, especially with larger firms or companies in specialized industries. Not surprisingly, a background in or some knowledge of computer software systems is another highly regarded asset. Computer hardware engineers who obtain one or more certifications from the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) will also stand out among qualified applicants. Advancement options for these engineers include opportunities as senior technical specialists and computer and information systems managers.

What’s the supply of computer hardware engineers?

The computer hardware engineer industry is concentrated in California, Maryland, Colorado

Computer Hardware Engineer job market by state

State Name Employed Computer Hardware Engineers
California 22,120
Maryland 3,980
Colorado 3,630
Massachusetts 2,560
Florida 2,120
Texas 1,980
North Carolina 1,730
Michigan 1,590
Washington 1,460
Georgia 1,400
Minnesota 1,400
Alabama 1,320
New York 1,300
Virginia 1,270
Illinois 1,250
Pennsylvania 1,250
Arizona 1,140
Ohio 910
New Jersey 800
Tennessee 720
Wisconsin 630
Connecticut 480
Kansas 460
District of Columbia 440
South Carolina 380
Indiana 370
Idaho 270
Louisiana 270
New Hampshire 270
Arkansas 260
Missouri 260
Puerto Rico 250
Oklahoma 230
Mississippi 230
West Virginia 220
Iowa 200
Hawaii 140
Nevada 130
Kentucky 130
Alaska 70
North Dakota 30