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Hardware Engineer

  • This job opening is for a position of an Electronics Engineer (a.k.a. “Hardware Engineer”, “Double-E Engineer”).
  • This job opening is for our Taipei office. It is not possible to do this job remotely.
  • This job opening is not limited to Taiwan nationals.
  • You can apply if you are a foreigner living in Taiwan.
  • You can apply even if you reside in a different country, but you must be OK with moving to Taiwan.
  • This job requires English and (at least some) Chinese (Mandarin) language skills.

Electronics Engineer: Job Definition

In a nutshell, an Electronics Engineer is someone who designs and debugs electronic circuits, and also layouts printed circuit boards. Since our products are mostly “electronics in a box”, for us, the “Double-E” Engineer is someone who takes care of the “hardware guts” of our devices.

We Hire for the Long Haul

People who joined Tibbo will typically stay with us for a very long time. We have employees who have now worked here for 15 years. Attrition is low, and we actively avoid hiring “job butterflies” (people who jump from job to job, staying only for short periods of time).

We Hire for Attitude

Attitude is everything. It is OK if you don’t know something. If you are willing to learn, we will be open to giving you a shot at this job. This said, please note that...

...You Must Be Able and Willing to Work With Your Hands

For many engineers today, the only tools familiar to them are their keyboard and mouse. Ask them to solder a resistor onto a PCB, and they are lost. Even some PCB design engineers have no practical skills in “using their hands”. Electronics design is a very practical job, and it requires you to often get your hands dirty. You will not just design. You will solder, adjust, connect, test, and so forth. Your desk drawer will be full of tools: wire cutters, screwdrivers, pliers, etc. You will first design, then assemble, then test, then go back to the “drawing board”, and so on. That’s the job. Only apply if you are able and willing to work with your hands.

Further, we believe that practical skills of working with one’s hands are attained early in life. We don’t think we can teach you that. We can teach you a lot of things, and we can accept that you have a limited experience or no experience in some job-related fields, but you must come with the skills of holding a screwdriver, soldering wires, and do other “things” of this sort. If you are a maker in your heart, then you will instantly know what we mean by this.

One Sentence You Must Never Use in Tibbo

There is a certain phrase we often hear from engineers in Taiwan, and this phrase has been outlawed in Tibbo. If you want to have a happy working life here, then never say this:

應該OK吧

This phrase expresses a deep cultural phenomenon here in Taiwan. In translation, it means: “Let’s not bother with checking right now. It’s probably OK anyway… And if it’s not, we will take care of this if and when a problem arises.” No, no, and NO! We manufacture expensive professional equipment. Our stuff must not fail. Check everything. Test everything. Be paranoid about the performance of your designs in real-life situations. Do not just “hope” your product will work. Make sure it will. Know it will.

Project Range

Tibbo specializes in the IoT, Industrial Automation, Data Collection, and Remote Device Management. Here are some notes on the kind of designs you will be doing here:

  • Our products are mostly digital devices built around microcontrollers or microprocessors.
  • We have both thumbnail-size projects (see the EM500 module), and larger and more complex designs utilizing 6-layer PCBs and making heavy use of BGA-type ICs (see the LTPP3 board).
  • Although most of our projects have “digital hearts”, you will often deal with analog circuitry: ADCs and DACs, power supplies, signal isolation, and so on.
  • Some of our digital circuitry comprises high-speed buses (for DDRAM, flash, etc.), and these require specialized layout knowledge and skills.
  • When designing, you will have to consider CE and FCC certification issues, which will often cause multiple redesigns and require a lot of testing.
  • jobs will have RF aspects. For example, you may be required to implement an antenna connector for a third-party Wi-Fi module. This is not a full-blown RF design, but even this simple job will require some sense of placement, layout, tuning, etc.
  • We make industrial-grade products. Operating conditions are often harsh: wide temperature range (from -40C to +90C), high humidity, constant vibration, frequent ESD, noise, and so on. Products you design will have to survive and thrive in these conditions!

Tibbo Uses Project-Oriented R&D Approach

R&D departments of some companies are like conveyor belts. Each engineer or a group of engineers has its narrow specialization, and each project passes through several engineers, akin to a product passing through many workers’ hands as it travels along the production line. One engineer “just designs the schematics”, another engineer “just layouts the PCB”, the third engineer “just assembles and tests”, the fourth one “just deals with production issues”, and so on.

We, at Tibbo, do not use the “conveyor belt” approach. Sure, it has its advantages, but it also creates a degree of separation between the “baby” (your product) and its “creator” (you). At Tibbo, every product has its designated “creator”, and this person is responsible for bringing this product into the world. When you are assigned a product to develop, every aspect of this product’s design becomes your responsibility. Sure, you get help from other professionals in the company, but the ultimate responsibility for the successful outcome lies with you. In this way, Tibbo products and projects are very personal.

Tibbo Runs on Altium

We understand that there are several competing schematic capture and PCB layout software packages out there. We understand that Altium doesn’t command 100% of the PCB design market. Still, some years ago we’ve made our choice: Tibbo runs on Altium, and that’s that.

Now, if it’s not Altium that you are using right now, then you can still apply for this job. Your experience with other PCB software will still count. This, however, does not mean that you will be free to use any software of your choosing. If you work here, it will be Altium. If it is not Altium that you are using right now, we will give you time to learn Altium, but it will be Altium. Tibbo = Altium.

Altium and SolidWorks

In an exciting development, Altium and SolidWorks have joined forces, and it is now possible to design the mechanical and PCB portions of new products concurrently. This is huge, and if you join Tibbo, you will be working on such hybrid mechanical/PCB projects.

This doesn’t mean that you will also be tasked with designing enclosures — we have industrial designers and mechanical engineers to do this. This means that the mechanical aspect of the work will be woven into your design process. Plus, you will need to know how to create 3D shapes of parts you put on your PCBs.

Using FPGAs

It is a huge plus if you understand FPGAs. Several of our projects have already used FPGAs — from the very small (Lattice ICE40 family) to pretty large (Altera MAX10). We will be delighted to give you a chance to sharpen your FPGA skills!

Writing Firmware

We do not expect you to write firmware, but dude (dudette), have at least some rudimentary firmware skills! We’ve seen hardware guys who were literally unable to write a simple cycle in order to test the IO lines on their own boards. So, we hope you are not completely hopeless when it comes to doing a bit of a firmware work.

You Will Be a Part of the Micromanufacturing Revolution

Micromanufacturing, i.e. manufacturing in very small quantities using “tiny” factories is on its way to fast becoming a revolutionary business trend (see my article titled Micromanufacturing the future). In Taiwan, Tibbo was one of the micromanufacturing pioneers. In a country that prides itself on the “hugeness” of its assembly lines, Tibbo was one of the first to see the need for compact, inexpensive manufacturing cells.

What does that mean for you? As our future hardware engineer, you will be able to make (with the help of our production engineers) “real” manufacturing samples of your designs right here, in our office!

You Will Be Dealing With Local Vendors and Engineers

Foreign applicants! Read this section very carefully!

Tibbo is a diverse, multi-cultural team that includes skilled professionals from many countries. We welcome international talent. At the same time, understand that being a successful hardware designer will require you to establish good working relationship with local vendors and engineers.

Despite having a large number of language schools, Taiwan has not made much progress in the English department. Most local vendors you will encounter do not speak a word of English. Hardware design is not like software design. Hardware is much closer to the physical world. In Taiwan, this world speaks Mandarin. Therefore, as a Hardware Engineer, you will need (at least some) Mandarin to get by.

Your Educational and Work Background, Skills

We are looking for university graduates who majored in Electronics Engineering, often referred to as “EE” or “Double-E”. We require at least two years of prior working experience. Our ideal candidate will also be an experienced maker of things, not just a graduate with “theoretical” knowledge.

As explained, there are three additional skills that you must possess:

  • You must be able to design and debug electronic circuits, as well as layout PCBs.
  • You must be able to work with your hands (explained above), for example, to assemble and test the boards you have designed.
  • Your English must be acceptable. Hint: if this document is not hard for you to read, then your English is OK.
  • Your Chinese (Mandarin) must be good enough to be able to talk to local vendors and engineers.

Everything else is negotiable. It is OK if you are not yet a superstar in every aspect of your job, as long as you have the right attitude and a good working knowledge in the core field of “EE”.

On-the-Job Training

If you come to work for us, we will do our best to share our knowledge and experience with you. You will not be left alone, and your professional level and skills will quickly improve.

Interested?

Send an email to dima@tibbo.com. Include your resume, and we will contact you to set up an interview. To save you time, To save you time, we can conduct the first interview via Skype (with video, so you will need a webcam).

Distributors, Contact InfoContact Tibbo Office in TaiwanContact Tibbo AggreGate TeamJobsAbout Us