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Benefits As A Professional Engineer From A Business And Individual Perspective

Dr. GOH Hui Hwang | 18 May, 2020

As our former sixth Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib, announced that in 2012 the engineering sector will be opened up to allow 100% international technical consulting firms to join the sector. Therefore, to delete the provisions restricting free market policy it is appropriate to amend the applicable laws and regulations.

Registered engineer or qualified engineer is a recognised technical title licensed by the Malaysian Engineering Council and accredited to the highest levels of national engineering standards in Malaysia. It is defined by the ability to create new solutions through creativity, development, and transformation using new or existing technologies for engineering problems. These may also develop and implement new technology, promote innovative design and design processes, incorporate modern and effective manufacturing techniques, marketing and construction ideas, and develop new engineering and management methodologies.

The nationality of engineers registered in the Board of Engineers, Malaysia (BEM) is no longer restricted and more foreign engineers are permitted to work in Malaysia. With the influx of numerous funds and organizational expertise, engineering consulting firms have also extended their business in other countries.

Don’t Keep Isolationism

With respect to company management, at least two-thirds of directors should be technically engineered, and the remaining one-third must not satisfy those requirements, but the board of directors shall be headed by a reasonably skilled engineer. Malaysia cannot maintain the engineering industry’s “isolationist tendency.” Not only does this generate more jobs, but the engineering consultancy company is also able to extend its business to other parts of the world. It cannot be overlooked that Malaysia will become a global engineering technical service centre.

The board’s real purpose is to protect people’s protection, since the Engineers Act 1967 (Revised 2015) is not to protect engineers, but to preserve and safeguard the people’s interests.

This allows all government departments and agencies, private companies and people involved in technical engineering or engineering consultancies to ensure that a certificate of practice is obtained from the appropriate engineers or companies. Local authorities accepting engineering applications shall ensure that the “submitter” has a certificate of competence.

The amendment would separate qualified engineers into the first and second levels. All who wish to become qualified engineers must take the second level in 12 months’ time after passing the test at the first level. Upon completing the examination, the functional credential will be given to the technical competence exam. The Board recommends that all Malaysians and foreign citizens recognized by the Washington Agreement can be registered with the Board of Engineers of Malaysia (BEM), as graduate engineers.

Certificate of Competence is Like a Warrant

If a qualified engineer wishes to practice and provide professional engineering services, he/she must complete the professional competency exam (PCE) for the purpose of obtaining a practicing certificate of the Board of Engineers, Malaysia (BEM) at the second level. This credential is like a license, and the applicant must apply annually for the renewal of the credential and must have at least 50 Continuous Professional Development (CPD) a year.

Why become a professional engineer or professional engineer with practising certificate?

  • Worth of Professional Engineer title to business
    1. Improved core competitiveness such as skilled and technical personnel’s quantity and efficiency is directly related to the company’s research and development expertise, the effective bid capability, market share etc.
    2. Approval of national licenses for new research and development facilities, such as construction sector certification programs, repairs, improvements, manufacturing technology enterprises etc. The country needs a range of professionals with appropriate technical engineering titles.
    3. Constructing a continual talent echelon, including reserve-related talent echelon, dramatically reduces the risk of loss of professional and technical talents (for example the resignation, work shifting, casualties, etc.).
    4. Public financial and tax assistance in some countries. In other countries, you may apply for national high-tech companies for advanced qualifications and qualified personnel and receive regional tax cuts and talent subsidies
    5. Providing real business income including engineering and bidding requires professional workers with appropriate titles as qualified engineers.
  • Worth of professional engineer title to individuals
    1. Boost career prospects and employability Professional engineers will demonstrate to employers that they have the expertise, experience and abilities required for today’s technical and engineering needs. Professional credentials improve your resume and can provide additional incentives for work, career growth and promotion.
    2. Increased earning potential Salaries range from 3,870 MYR (lowest average) to 9,300 MYR (highest average, actual maximum salary is higher). This is the monthly average salary including lodging, transportation, and other benefits. Salaries differ greatly between engineering professions. (Retrieved from
    3. Capabilities internationally recognised Registered professionals and engineers have relatively high international mobility and their technological skills are not challenged even though they have no experience working in other countries.
    4. Supreme honours Local authorities, business experts and the entire society’s appreciation of academic level, job capability and efficiency of professional and technical workers.
    5. Encouraging status If an expert in a specific industry category, the status stands out among peers.

In short, getting a designation as a professional engineer means you have specialized engineering skills. The certificate itself does not depreciate from the present view, but human knowledge depreciates.

Ir. Dr. GOH Hui Hwang
IPM Group

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