Contact US

Log In

Come Join Us!

Are you an
Engineering professional?
Join Eng-Tips Forums!
  • Talk With Other Members
  • Be Notified Of Responses
    To Your Posts
  • Keyword Search
  • One-Click Access To Your
    Favorite Forums
  • Automated Signatures
    On Your Posts
  • Best Of All, It's Free!

*Eng-Tips's functionality depends on members receiving e-mail. By joining you are opting in to receive e-mail.

Posting Guidelines

Promoting, selling, recruiting, coursework and thesis posting is forbidden.

Students Click Here

Are you busy? Informal survey.

Are you busy? Informal survey.

Are you busy? Informal survey.

I thought I would start a thread to get a feel for how everyone is doing right now. If you don't mind sharing give us your:

1.    Location & discipline
2.    Level of bidding or proposal activity
3.    Level of work currently with commitments / in progress
4.    Trending up or down?

I'll begin with:
1.    Southwest Florida, Structural
2.    2 in Feb, 3 in March, 0 MTD in April. (2 per week is typical in a healthy market)
3.    2 single family residential, 0 commercial, 0 multifamily
4.    On par with 2009 levels (looks like it may get slower though). Approx. 25% of 2008 levels. No advertised employment opportunities locally.

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

US Southwest, Civil

lots of marketing and lots of competition

very busy, but partly because we layed off a bunch of people already and nobody left to do the work. Also busy because of ARRA money funding a large government project

looks like I will be employed at least till the end of the year

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

1. Gulf South, Structural
2. Probably averaging a proposal per week.
3. Very steady work right now.
4. Got some really nice projects on the way.  Hiring another employee.

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

1. North and Central Florida, primarily, but we have projects in South Florida and West Florida, Construction and Structural Forensics
2. Proposals by request. No marketing.  Mostly referrals.
3. Steady work in specialized area. Keeping 5 engineers gainfully employed.
4. Trend is consistent with expected upward trend.

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

1. Los Angeles / Civil Engineering
2. Proposals were higher than normal for month of March and Feburary.
3. Work is slow, but some big projects are getting financed finally.  Some mansion types of demo the mansion and build crazier mansion.  And some large low income housing projects.
4. Trend is way up.  Even my partner who is not happy with the situation said today that proposals are way up.  I am the one keeping track and know this as truth job #'s and money wise.

Civil Development Group, LLC
Los Angeles Civil Engineering specializing in Hillside Grading

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

East Midlands. UK   Automotive.

Lots of quoting but everything for some time in the near future.

Currently running at about 40% capacity, but everything is a struggle waiting on data, orders etc.

Hard to say I feel it is still very much in the balance, it could tip one way or the other.

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

1.  Gulf South. Civil/Structural
2.  Proposals have increased.  Activity is high.
3.  Workload is heavy.  We're 70% Oil and Gas.  A few ARRA projects are sustaining a good bit of overtime.  
4.  Trending up.

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

Puerto Rico - engineering services for major aerospace co.
We have had some slow down, our 2nd major client has cut back in the work allot. I personaly am pretty busy. (But not at this very moment.)
Some improvement is expected.

Peter Stockhausen
Senior Design Analyst (Checker)
Infotech Aerospace Services

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

1. DC Capital Region, Mechanical
2. 2-3 proposals a week
3. Overwhelming level
4. Continually increasing

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

1.  NJ, PA, DE
2.  3-4 calls a week
4.  40-60 hrs a week
5.  Up

I set a record with last week's invoicing, and invoiced out $8k.  Normally it's 2-3k.  I have 9 open inquiries on my desk right now, and about $10k booked for May (I specialize in small gigs).  Recession is over in my area.

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

1.  WA, Civil,Structural

2.  3 per month, up from 1 for the past 12 months

3.  20-40 hours/week starting next week

4.  Starting to go up, slowly

Mike McCann
MMC Engineering
Motto:  KISS
Motivation:  Don't ask

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

1. Central U.S., all disciplines
2. 2-3 small proposals /week
3. About 50% chargeable
4. Up slightly

Already had some layoffs. If the 50% doesn't improve very soon, more will be forthcoming.

"The engineer's first problem in any design situation is to discover what the problem really is." Unk.

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

1. WA, Structural, mostly residential
2. Most of my work is word of mouth, so I rarely do competitive proposals.  Maybe 1 out of 10 jobs.
3.  20 to 30 hours per week, enough for me
4.  About average.  My only slow time was Oct. thru Dec. 09.

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

A couple of hits on proposals and we now have theoretical backlog in to the fall.

"The engineer's first problem in any design situation is to discover what the problem really is." Unk.

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

1.  Pennsylvania, New York, Connecticut, NC, SC - Structural

2. I'm not privvy to this info

3.  I'm as busy as I've ever been in my four years as an engineer.

4.  Only getting more busy!

Just as a side note, I'm feeling extremely overworked for the compensation I'm receiving.  I've been at 55-60+ hours/week for a few months now, and I'm just now getting back to the salary I had 2 years ago.  That does not make me, my hard work, or all the extra hours I put in feel appreciated.  I think I only stay because I love the projects I get to work on.  

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

1.  Midwest USA, Structural
2.  1-4 a week.  Varies.  We do a lot of small stuff.
3.  work level: Low
4.  Trending: Down

We do most our work in the state with the highest unemployment rate, so that is probably the crux of the problem.  Had a fairly busy March-May, but June and onward isn't looking good.  Backlog has dried up.

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

We have some backlog, but projects that we have been awarded seem to stall repeatedly so cash flow is not there.

"The engineer's first problem in any design situation is to discover what the problem really is." Unk.

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

1. Based in the midwest: oil & gas-proj, const & eng mgmt
2. 2 proposals in this month
3. 1 major contract, 1 minor contract, 1 pending award
4. 2010 is trending about 20% higher (in volume) than 2009


Greg Lamberson, BS, MBA
Consultant - Upstream Energy
Website: www.oil-gas-consulting.com

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

Update from April:

1.  NJ, PA, DE
2.  3-4 calls a week
4.  40-60 hrs a week
5.  Still Up


RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

1. Welding - Primarily southeast
2. Bit of fossil, multiple large nuclear.
3. 50 hours typical, 1 pending fossil award, 2 nuclear, 1 pending nuclear.
4. Fossil as a whole down, Nuclear up, FGD's and natural gas up.

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

1.    Virginia - Mechanical(industrial machinery and products)
2.    Low bidding and proposal activity; doing lots of marketing and looking for new opportunities
3.    Low workload, 1 small machine project
4.    Flat trend this quarter


RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

1.    Oregon.  Structural, mostly residential
2.    Low
3.    Low but things trickle in
4.    Flat

Mike Drinkwater, P.E.

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

South Florida, Civil, Str & MEP FS Firm

1.    South Florida - Civil, Str & MEP FS building industry Firm
2.    high proposal activity
3.    high workload, MEP dept. ave. $12,000/employee/mo last quarter
4.    My dept. (MEP) is slammed- I'm averaging 95-100 hrs per 2 week pay cycle. Most of our work is in FLorida but I am also doing clean rooms in oth MA and CO.

Structure is dead, lots of retrofit/renovation but no new buildings. Trend is upwards otherwise. I gave notice last week to form my own new firm.  

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

New Hampshire but in process of relocating to San Francisco area.  mechanical engineering background with major concentration in both fluids and mechanical design but currently working with entrepreneurs from all disciplines so current work focus unclear.  Lots of proposals still in the early stage of my business.  Lots of work still waiting for the payoff.

Kalen Smith

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

1.    PA, NJ, NY - Structural
2.    Not privy - seems to be about 1-2/week
3.    Extremely high work load 40-50 hrs/Week for the 4 yrs I've been working.  Actually overwhelming  No slowdown
4.    Steady - To Up.. don't see it slowing down anytime soon

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

1. BC,AB,SK Canada - Multi-disciplinary firm (I'm structural)
2. About 3 per week on average, a lot of repeat clients. Busier during the summer as usual.
3. Low productivity for the first half of the year ~50%, now working at 95-100% billable.  Should be consistent until the end of the year.  Heavy involvment in oil & gas and pulp & paper (Green Transfer funding probably about 50% of the office workload)
4. Trending up - office currently expanding

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

1 - WA - Civil/Struct/Construction
2 - 2/week (Not consistent, some weeks 4, some weeks 0)
3- Winter and Spring were pretty good. Solid profits for 7 straight months. July and August will be our first negative months this year. Although our construction division made profits both months.
4- Short term trend appears to be up as the work planned for fall/winter is more than we have staffing for. I will hire one more probably about end of Q3.


RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

1-Pasadena, Ontario, Anahiem, Encino, San Fran,San Diego,CA
2-Proposals Slow, Ongoing large contracts saving some offices, overall continued slow proposals, minimal level design, have most people working slightly shortened weeks, a few institional projects going out for bidding.
3-Spring was slow, picked up in June & July, slowing again.
4-Flat, we've been slow in most offices for several months, we have the ability to share work between offices when one is especially slow.  Major projects not moving.  Most of our work is for healthcare, schools, government buildings.  I have been going between offices to pick up work where help is needed. (Electrical).

RE: Are you busy? Informal survey.

1 - Southwest, Civil/Telecom
2 - Approx. 2 deliverables per week. Very inconsistent though. Some weeks 4, some weeks 0.
3. 2008 & 2009 were exceptionally busy years. My company had never been busier and we were lucky to bypass most of the bad economy. Q1 of 2010 was quite busy as well.
4. Trending down, at an extremely unsettling rate. It looks like the recession has finally caught up with our business. I partly blame the managing director and owner though (small company) since neither of them were prospecting for new business last year - they were too busy just trying to manage the workload (probably a good case study of how 'not' to run a successful engineering firm). However, their big projects have finally wound down, and now there isn't much on the horizon. And they made the mistake of hiring too many people at the height of our busy period (I knew it wouldn't last, but for some odd reason they thought it would). Layoffs are on the way, without question.....

Red Flag This Post

Please let us know here why this post is inappropriate. Reasons such as off-topic, duplicates, flames, illegal, vulgar, or students posting their homework.

Red Flag Submitted

Thank you for helping keep Eng-Tips Forums free from inappropriate posts.
The Eng-Tips staff will check this out and take appropriate action.

Reply To This Thread

Posting in the Eng-Tips forums is a member-only feature.

Click Here to join Eng-Tips and talk with other members! Already a Member? Login


Low-Volume Rapid Injection Molding With 3D Printed Molds
Learn methods and guidelines for using stereolithography (SLA) 3D printed molds in the injection molding process to lower costs and lead time. Discover how this hybrid manufacturing process enables on-demand mold fabrication to quickly produce small batches of thermoplastic parts. Download Now
Design for Additive Manufacturing (DfAM)
Examine how the principles of DfAM upend many of the long-standing rules around manufacturability - allowing engineers and designers to place a part’s function at the center of their design considerations. Download Now
Taking Control of Engineering Documents
This ebook covers tips for creating and managing workflows, security best practices and protection of intellectual property, Cloud vs. on-premise software solutions, CAD file management, compliance, and more. Download Now

Close Box

Join Eng-Tips® Today!

Join your peers on the Internet's largest technical engineering professional community.
It's easy to join and it's free.

Here's Why Members Love Eng-Tips Forums:

Register now while it's still free!

Already a member? Close this window and log in.

Join Us             Close