March 22, 2021

The 8 Qualities You Want (and Need) in Your Civil Engineer


When you bring a civil engineer on board your project, that partnership requires that you and your entire team have a great deal of trust in their abilities. An effective civil engineer should have a diverse skillset, backed by expertise and knowledge – of not only their craft but of current regulations, laws, and industry standards. Here we outline just a few traits commonly found in the best of the best in the field. 

What To Look For

When you hire your project’s civil engineer you should look to find the right individual or group to handle your project effectively. The most effective civil engineers will excel with the following characteristics:

1. Communication 

A civil engineer communicates with many of the project’s stakeholders, such as architects, planners, citizens, elected officials, and contractors. As such, they must speak effectively to each group with authority and accuracy, adapting as needed to meet varying levels of project demands. They must be able to convey complex technical information in a way their audience understands using honesty and transparency. 

If a civil engineer’s communication is unclear, it can cause issues and delays in the project timeline, which can impact the entire project. In addition to speaking clearly, a civil engineer has to have strong listening skills and listen to reviewers and citizen concerns as valuable input for the benefit of the project.

2. Creativity 

This attribute may seem like the antithesis to civil engineering’s scientific nature, but creativity is a beneficial trait to define solutions for clients. Creative thinking allows civil engineers to innovate and improve upon solutions that have already been implemented while also ideating answers for their client’s new problems.

3. Critical Thinking

When deciding on possible solutions for complex project issues, a civil engineer must analyze the projected results of several options to determine which will work best regardless of the variables present. Often, the problems civil engineers solve will have only a few realistic and practical answers, so it is their job to critically analyze the issues, including the effect on a project’s budget, schedule, and completion, to determine the best course of action.  

4. Experience

Experience matters when it comes to choosing your project’s civil engineer. Understanding the specifics of proposed properties, various project types, regulatory requirements, government, and political initiatives, as well as skilled design, is developed over years of practice and exposure to a vast array of project types, designs, and conditions. Hiring the right engineer who is an expert in the field and demonstrating an array of experience on your particular project type will often end up with the best results. 

5. Technical Competence

At the core of any engineering company is the ability to provide the technical skills and expertise to perform their stated engineering competencies. Educational background, technical certifications, and memberships in engineering professional organizations are a good barometer of an engineer’s competence. Most engineers are happy to discuss and share their expertise and be willing to identify their company’s technical abilities. 

6. Project Management

A civil engineer has the important job of managing design and permitting for a project. Further, they must manage relationships with other design team members, clients, and review agencies. Managing their work effort and project schedule takes organization, communication, and understanding of the entire design and permitting process. Successful project outcomes occur when the engineer manages the project carefully, keeps the project on schedule, and communicates throughout the process with all the applicable project team members.

7. Leadership 

A civil engineer often leads the design and permitting process. An effective leader collaborates, listens, and receives input from all parties while making decisions that guide a project from beginning to end. A good leader will guide the project direction, exhibit strong communication skills, and use their decision-making skills to overcome problems, find the right solutions, and represent the client’s interests.

8. Reputation

Always do your research on your civil engineer. Does the company have a good reputation in the area they serve? Do they have a track record of successfully completing projects? Ask around and do your homework. The best civil engineers will stand up to your research scrutiny and will be happy to answer any questions you may have regarding their reputation. Honest and ethical engineers should always be available. 

Our Qualities Ensure Your Project’s Quality 

When it is time to hire a civil engineering team for your project, rely on the expertise at JBPro, a leading engineering firm in Gainesville, Florida, whose team has decades of experience. Our civil engineers exhibit the qualities and characteristics needed to complete projects with the highest quality. We will always strive and train to develop our engineering staff to make sure we serve our clients and our communities with professionalism, trust, and responsibility.

We help clients in North Central and Northeast Florida, including St. Augustine, with creative urban design, civil engineering, surveying, land planning, and construction services. Whether you have an Alachua County development project or any other type, we have the qualities to ensure your project’s success. Contact us today to find out how we can serve you with accuracy and excellence.