Roles in Robotics: The Forefront of Engineering

Roles in robotics are varied and you certainly don’t need a robotics degree to enter the industry.  Forget the futuristic androids of sci-fi, robots are more and more part of everyday life.  From health care to manufacturing, robots are everywhere.  Here are a few avenues into the wonderful world of robotics.

Engineering roles in robotics

If you have a degree in robotics, this is probably the role you’ll want.  Robotics engineers design the robot from inception to roll out.  The engineer will design and often build prototypes then go onto project management and oversee the development of the device.  Engineers are generally very highly qualified and have the leadership skills to fulfil a complex engineering project.

Software Developers

Robots need software and if you are the kind of developer that relishes an entirely bespoke coding project, robotics may be the career for you.  Software developers tend to work closely with the chief engineer to develop systems specifically for the project. C/C++ is probably the most commonly used programming language in robotics and Python is very useful for machine learning. Look at ROS (Robot Operating System). It is a suite of applications and tools designed for robotics. Check out FutureLearn’s Programming skills for robotics.


Technicians are usually involved throughout the design, development and implementation of robots.  The engineer may well delegate details of the design project to the technician for analysis and testing.  Technicians are involved in the build, the testing, the maintenance and the updating of the robot.  If you have a detail-focused, analytical mind and want to work at the forefront of engineering this could be the career for you.


Robots need operators (at least at the moment!).  Robots vary in complexity of course but many operators are highly trained individuals who take a level of ownership over the robot.  Operators often are also responsible, to a degree, for the maintenance and management of the robot.  If you want to be hands-on and work with cutting edge technology becoming an operator in robotics is a great option.