Where did the Certification come from?
In 1968 the first CQE certification exam was given and since then over 120,000 people have be certified through ASQ. ASQ itself was established in 1946 and traces its roots to the end of World War II. Since then ASQ has played a key role in maintaining and continually improving Quality standards.
What do CQE’s do?
Generally speaking, Certified Quality Engineers are professionals who have demonstrated that they are proficient in the knowledge and application of certain Quality Ideas/Principles.
Notice I said professionals here, and I say that because anybody can become a CQE. Having a pre-existing degree in Engineering is not required to become a Certified Quality Engineer, but it certainly does help.
Now you may be wondering, what Quality Ideas & Principles are these CQE’s proficient in? As a general rule, CQE’s, regardless of industry, utilize their skills in a few if not all of the following areas, which are fully documented in the ASQ BoK:
• Management & Leadership
• The Quality System
• Product or Process Design
• Product or Process Control
• Continuous Improvement
• Quantitative Tools & Methods
Have I truly answered the question in the heading? No, I was vague on purpose. This is because the Certified Quality Engineer can end up doing many different things, but what’s important here is that getting your Certification as a Quality Engineer will certainly increase your value as an asset to your current employer which you can and should leverage into career growth.
What industries do CQE’s work in?
Great Question, right? The answer is, wherever quality engineers are needed.
Below is a list of industries that historically have maintained a Quality System and therefore employ quality engineers.
• Aviation, Space & Defense
• Pharmaceutical Manufacturers
• Biomedical (Medical Devices)
• Industrial Equipment
• Energy Industry (Oil & Gas, Nuclear, Chemical, etc)
• Engineering & Construction Firms
• Food, Drug & Cosmetics
How do I become a CQE?
Are you sold yet on the idea of becoming a Certified Quality Engineer?
Hopefully! I know I am. So the path toward certification starts with the ASQ and finishes with an Exam. I’ve created a checklist below of things you must do to become CQE certified.
1. Meet the ASQ Requirements to take the CQE Exam.
2. Apply for CQE Certification (paperwork if you’ve completed #1)
3. Study for the Exam.
4. Pass the Exam.
Does it seem simple? Well it is and it isn’t, but it all depends on you!
The real key to CQE certification is #3, studying. Studying for the exam will consume 99% of your time becoming a CQE!