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Burns & McDonnell Staff Engineer - Underground Distribution Engineer (Chicago) in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania


At Burns & McDonnell, opportunity is waiting. We’re looking for people with big ideas and an entrepreneurial mindset. It’s those kinds of people who’ve helped us grow from a small consulting business back in 1898 to a global leader in engineering, construction, and consulting solutions. Today, we’re a thriving company with over 8,000 professionals working in 50 offices worldwide, 100% employee-owned firm.

We’re growing our Underground Electrical design and construction business and have opportunities for experienced and motivated industry professionals to join us in our Downtown Chicago office as we continue our journey to help make our clients successful. We have a specific opportunity for an experienced distribution electrical engineer with underground experience to join our transmission and distribution team.

At Burns & McDonnell, we are addressing projects across the country that range widely in both complexity and voltage and supporting our clients as they take on new challenges to rebuild their electric grid to support the challenges of tomorrow. We are able to provide solutions that overcome these challenges in an expedited fashion and provide opportunities for our team to experience the entire project lifecycle. With our clients’ needs in this area expanding rapidly, we are looking for engineers to join our team and help drive the vision for tomorrow’s electrical grid.

In this role, the Staff Electrical Engineer will focus on electrical distribution engineering design on underground power utility projects ranging from 2.4kV to 34.5kV voltage classes. This role requires the ability to handle multiple projects and to prioritize work. This position will be responsible for the development of distribution scopes, proposal writing, and an array of challenging items including the design of engineering deliverables on various utility distribution projects. This position will require interface with utility clients and collaboration with multiple offices. This exciting opportunity will provide latitude for continued professional growth as a part of our established mentorship programs.

  • This role is responsible for leading design teams in the preparation, development, and execution of distribution voltage engineering packages for underground construction.

  • Performs technical scope review for project proposals including developing engineering hours estimates, identify project complexities & risks, and determine project schedule working in collaboration with project managers.

  • Coordinates work requiring engineering judgment in the independent evaluation, selection, adaptation and modification of standard engineering techniques, procedures and criteria.

  • Drives technical leadership while providing quality and constructability reviews for project work executed by others and self

  • This position requires an experienced and competent individual capable of successfully solving difficult problems that require adaptation and modification of standard techniques, procedures, and criteria.

Assignments may include:

  • Design distribution systems utilizing client standards of underground distribution facilities including distribution equipment installation, feeder replacement, cable replacement, new feeder design, overhead to underground conversions, and others as assigned.

  • Develop routing analysis for the design of low to medium voltage distribution lines using CAD, GIS design, and/or mapping software.

  • Determine construction feasibility through route studies, conflict analysis, and construction cost estimating.

  • Respond to client RFPs by developing scope of works, resource estimates, and identification of project risks.

  • Prepare calculations and equipment specifications.

  • Assess feasibility or soundness of proposed applications when data is insufficient

  • Perform quality reviews of engineering design packages.

  • Provide leadership, guidance, and instruction to less experienced staff members.

  • Regularly meet and correspond with clients or outside personnel.

  • Other duties as assigned.


  • ​​​​​Bachelor’s degree in engineering or related degree from ABET accredited program.

  • Minimum 3 years of distribution experience (completion of master's degree in related field may be substituted for one year of experience).

  • Preferred experience includes holistic knowledge of electrical distribution design, underground construction methods, familiarity with distribution system equipment, and ability to propose solutions to complex problems

  • Understanding of power flow systems.

  • Understanding of underground electrical distribution infrastructure including civil and electrical engineering components.

  • Familiarity with NESC code for electrical design and construction guidelines.

  • Familiarity with topographic mapping, surveying, and subsurface utility information as it applies to design projects

  • Field experience including engineering construction support or facility inspection for utility engineering projects a plus.

  • Strong analytical and problem-solving skills.

  • Knowledgeable of telecommunications, renewables and distribution generation integration, and advanced technologies a plus.

  • Capable of devising new, more efficient approaches to solving problems and processes.

  • Able to handle multiple projects simultaneously and to prioritize work.

  • Must be capable of devising new approaches to problems encountered.

  • Professional Engineering License (PE) preferred.EEO/Minorities/Females/Disabled/Veterans

Job Engineering

Primary Location US-IL-Chicago

Other Locations US-PA-Pittsburgh

Schedule: Full-time

Travel: Yes, 15 % of the Time

Req ID: 230678 Job Hire Type Experienced