What does a Firmware Engineer do?

Learn all about Firmware Engineer duties, skills and much more. Get expert advice on how to become a Firmware Engineer.

Photo of Brenna Goyette
Brenna Goyette
Certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Expert

Published 3 min read

A Firmware Engineer is responsible for developing, testing and maintaining the software that controls the hardware in electronic devices. They work with other engineers and technicians to create prototypes and test products before they are mass-produced. Firmware Engineers also develop code for new features and updates, and troubleshoot issues that arise during production.

Firmware Engineer job duties include:

  • Develop firmware for embedded systems
  • Write and test code for microcontrollers in C
  • Interface with hardware design engineers to understand system requirements
  • Develop and maintain documentation for firmware development and release processes
  • Perform code reviews and debug code as needed
  • Participate in firmware design meetings and provide input on feasibility of implementation
  • Understands principles of digital signal processing (DSP)
  • Ability to work with little supervision and take initiative to solve problems
  • Keeps up to date on latest industry trends and technologies

Firmware Engineer Job Requirements

Most firmware engineers have a bachelor's degree in computer science, although some have a degree in electrical engineering. Many firmware engineers are certified by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). Firmware engineers need to have experience with programming languages, such as C++ and Assembly, and microcontrollers, such as those made by Intel and Motorola.

Firmware Engineer Skills

  • C
  • Assembly
  • Microcontrollers
  • Firmware
  • PCB design
  • Testing
  • Debugging
  • Documentation
  • Configuration management
  • Change management
  • Problem solving

Related: Top Firmware Engineer Skills: Definition and Examples

How to become a Firmware Engineer

A firmware engineer is a software engineer who specializes in developing and maintaining firmware for electronic devices. Firmware is a type of software that is embedded in a hardware device, such as a computer, smartphone, or printer. It is responsible for low-level tasks such as booting the device and managing its basic functions.

Becoming a firmware engineer requires a strong background in software engineering and computer science. It is also helpful to have experience with embedded systems and hardware development. Firmware engineers typically have a bachelor’s degree in computer science or a related field.

Once you have the necessary education and experience, you can begin applying for jobs at companies that develop firmware for electronic devices. Alternatively, you can start your own firmware development business. Either way, you will need to keep up with the latest trends and technologies in order to be successful in this field.

Related: Firmware Engineer Resume Example

Related: Firmware Engineer Interview Questions (With Example Answers)