6 CI Engineer Responsibilities: With Skills and Definition

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 12 October 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Continuous improvement (CI) engineers are professionals who plan and design problem-solving strategies that aim to improve the overall operations within an organisation. It's important for candidates who wish to become CI engineers to fully understand these professionals' responsibilities to determine whether they have the correct skills and knowledge to fulfil their duties. Understanding these duties allows candidates to develop skills that can help them design better improvement processes and learn how to monitor productivity in an organisation.

In this article, we discuss the definition of CI engineer responsibilities and provide six responsibilities, with a guide to how these professionals use their skills in the workplace.

What are CI engineer responsibilities?

CI engineer responsibilities refer to the duties that CI engineers fulfil to improve an organisation's processes. These professionals fulfil an integral role that ensures organisations continually strive to better their operations and improve the quality of their products or service. CI engineers work closely with other professionals across a business to fulfil their responsibilities, ensuring that they gather comprehensive feedback on the type of processes that require improvement. This requires constant communication between heads of departments and senior figures throughout the business.

A CI engineer's main goal is to design process improvement strategies and tools that optimise productivity and improve work quality and workplace culture, ensuring that employees feel fulfilled and able to complete their responsibilities. These professionals also establish best practices for an organisation to guide them on future tasks and when designing new processes. To complete their responsibilities, CI engineers typically require a comprehensive understanding of business strategy. Candidates benefit from degrees in business and other related topics to ensure they have the correct industry knowledge and hard skills to utilise problem-solving frameworks.

Related: Quality Continuous Improvement Procedures (With Examples)

6 CI engineer duties

Here are six responsibilities that CI engineers fulfil:

1. Analyse current processes within an organisation

One of the main responsibilities of a CI engineer is to analyse the current processes within a business to measure its success. This means that professionals analyse how current processes in an organisation facilitate productivity, ensuring that professionals identify the processes that support productive work environments and the processes that are perhaps unclear or hinder employee or department performance.

This requires a comprehensive feedback and review process where CI engineers conduct a series of tests to ensure employees understand and value current processes. Analysing each process in this way provides a basis that CI engineers can work from to determine a comprehensive problem-solving plan once they've identified insufficiencies within a process.

Related: Business Process Analysis (Definition, Benefits and Steps)

2. Design solutions meant to target insufficiency within processes

Once CI engineers have reviewed processes and determined that processes are perhaps insufficient or don't facilitate productivity within an organisation, they then design solutions based on these insufficiencies. These solutions typically ensure that employees experience a boost in productivity, ensuring there are no gaps in the process that can lead to discrepancies in working quality.

Designing these solutions requires an in-depth planning process where candidates typically test processes and gain feedback during the early stages of development to ensure that new processes add value to departments. For example, if a CI engineer notices administrators take too much time to process holiday requests, engineers may devise a system that automates holiday requests to speed up productivity and ensure that administrators can fulfil their other responsibilities.

Related: What Is Continuous Improvement? With Benefits and Models

3. Optimise processes within an organisation

CI engineers don't just focus on designing new processes, they also focus on improving existing processes that are functional within a business but might benefit from additional resources or improvement. There may be lots of processes within an organisation they can optimise by making use of resources, such as technology or automation. It's the CI engineer's responsibility to review existing processes and ensure that while they work in favour of employees, there are areas they can improve to facilitate faster working.

For example, a CI engineer may recommend that employees instead make use of online customer management tools that process information more efficiently instead of manually inputting data into spreadsheets. When optimising current processes, it's important for CI engineers to ensure that they provide the proper training to adapt to new processes and communicate clearly how operations may change by altering existing processes.

Related: A Comprehensive Guide to Business Process Management

4. Collaborate with departments to gain feedback

To gather feedback and analyse the success of different processes, CI engineers are required to collaborate with other departments and senior figures within the organisation to gain an understanding of current pain points. Pain points refer to areas within an organisation that require a tangible change to help the business progress. For example, a business may have faults in employee engagement and require new processes to help motivate current employees to fulfil their duties. From this, the CI engineer devises plans to improve employee engagement by working with heads of departments that are likely to understand what engages their employees.

Collaborating with departments in this way requires good teamwork skills, as CI engineers may work closely with these professionals by devising new techniques, including the review process, once they launch new processes. It's important for professionals to maintain clear channels of communication with other professionals within the organisation so they can easily spot when a process is failing to facilitate proper productivity.

Related: What Is Business Process Improvement? (Plus Methodologies)

5. Monitor progress after implementing improvement processes

An important responsibility that CI engineers fulfil includes monitoring the progress of new processes after they launch. This requires gaining feedback from multiple employees across an organisation to determine whether the process is having the intended effect on productivity.

When doing this, CI engineers measure the productivity of the previous process against productivity with the new process, ensuring there is a tangible positive difference between the two. Monitoring progress can also refer to ensuring that employees are following proper training processes to implement new or improved processes.

6. Use technology to develop tools

It's also the CI engineer's responsibility to research and understand how technology can boost productivity in the workplace. This means that CI engineers develop, research and test how certain technologies can improve operations, such as automating certain tasks or managing areas of the business to streamline productivity.

This requires a thorough testing and review process where professionals use their attention to detail and technical skills to understand how to use this technology. For example, CI engineers may endeavour to find a technology that reduces time wasted on tasks that digital tools can automate.

CI engineer skills

To complete their responsibilities, CI engineers require a comprehensive list of skills that allow them to work collaboratively with teams and optimise current and new processes. Here's a guide to how CI engineers use their skills to support their daily duties:

  • Attention to detail: CI engineers require intensive attention to detail skills to analyse current processes to identify weaknesses, no matter how small. Identifying these weaknesses allows professionals to think critically and generate inventive and constructive ways of addressing these issues to improve productivity across an organisation.

  • Research skills: CI engineers require strong research skills to research different ways they can optimise productivity with different tools, such as technology and automated systems. This allows CI engineers to select the most effective methods to address their concerns or insufficiencies within the current organisational structure.

  • Technical skills: Technical skills allow CI engineers to utilise technology to their advantage and find ways of optimising processes with the help of technological tools. They also allow CI engineers to deliver training on these tools and teach employees how to use technical systems to their advantage.

  • Data analysis: As CI engineers base their decisions on data, it's important for these professionals to develop data analysis skills. This allows engineers to measure the success of their new or improved processes by measuring the results against results from previous processes.

  • Project management: These professionals may manage several processes at a time, requiring strong project management skills. This enables engineers to manage deadlines, consider their stakeholder's requirements and generate effective solutions to improve many processes.

  • Problem-solving: One of the most important skills that can support CI engineers and help them create effective solutions to organisational pain points is problem-solving. This allows Ci engineers to think critically about problems and address all factors of the issue with a comprehensive solution that contributes toward continual business development.

Explore more articles