The Information Workflow Requirements of Engineers

Author: JoMcShea

Date: November 8, 2016


Engineering is more information intensive than ever before, as communication technologies and software, computing, and analytics capabilities converge at exponential speed.

The Information Workflow Requirements of Engineers highlights common themes relating to requirements around information workflow and productivity improvements. This report highlights three key areas of need:

  • Discoverability
  • Ease of use (accessibility and interoperability)
  • Quality assurance

The report also examines the changing usage of information and workflow tools by engineers, the existing information environment, and requirements of a new generation of engineers moving into more senior roles. It also highlights several organizations that are strategically well positioned for success.

Always an information-intensive role, engineers are now knowledge workers as much as anything else, and it’s essential for vendors supporting this role to understand the challenges and opportunities at hand.


Outsell draws on both qualitative and quantitative research to build this report. Alongside interviews conducted with both engineering professionals and engineering information service providers in June and July 2016, Outsell leveraged both its own proprietary information resources (including our database of more than 8,000 cross-industry firms that create, aggregate, manipulate, and distribute information) and also publicly available online information resources. Additionally, we synthesized and conducted additional analysis on primary research studies commissioned by Outsell, surveying the information habits of millennial engineering knowledge workers, engineers in the US, the UK, France, and Germany with regards to their usage of standards and standardsrelated information, and engineering knowledge workers surveyed in Outsell’s online end-user survey.

A deep understanding of information-centric disruptive forces, daily interaction with executives in the information industry, and analysis of products and services that Outsell conducts as part of its advisory services further supports this research.

Outsell Inc. The Information Workflow Requirements of Engineers

Table of Contents:

Why This Topic


Market Overview

What is an Engineer?

The Engineering Life Cycle

Challenges Facing the Engineering Industry

What Engineers Want

Engineers as Knowledge Workers

Engineers and Standards-Related Information

Engineers: The Next Generation

Information Market Landscape

The Role of the Design Engineer

Types of Information Providers

Companies to Watch

Essential Actions

Related Research

About Outsell


Figures & Tables

Figure 1. Positioning Engineering as a Discipline

Table 1. Major Engineering Disciplines and Sub-Disciplines

Table 2. Examples of Traditional and Emerging Technology Engineering Sectors

Figure 2. The Engineering Life Cycle

Figure 3. The Project Life Cycle

Table 3. Examples of Information Tools and Software Used by Design Engineers


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