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System Planning and Reliability Engineer

McKenzie Electric Cooperative, Inc.

Location: Watford City, North Dakota US
Position Type: Full Time
Rqd Education: Bachelor's Degree
Rqd Experience: Entry Level
Date Posted: June 23, 2022
Reference Code:

Position Summary: Under the direction of the System Planning and Reliability Manager, responsible for maintaining and improving the reliability and integrity of the electrical, transmission, substation, and distribution system, within the scope of his/her training and certification in a safe and efficient manner within accepted McKenzie Electric Cooperative (MEC) and Rural Utilities Service (RUS) operations standards.

Responsibilities and Competencies: The following responsibilities and competency statements are essential functions of this position and are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by employees assigned to this job function. These statements are not intended to be construed as an exhaustive list of all responsibilities of personnel so classified.  The person in this position may be asked to perform additional duties as assigned by the General Manager/CEO or Direct Supervisor.

Responsibilities include the following. Other duties are as assigned.

  • Develops short and long range load projections and plans as required to maintain/improve the reliability and integrity of the electrical, transmission, substation and distributions system.
  • Determines fuse coordination and CT/PT data for engineering and operation personnel and assist in resolving problems related to these areas.
  • Works with consultants to design transmission and substation facilities.
  • Works with engineering and operations staff to design electrical distribution facilities as required to provide service to all MEC members.
  • Directly responsible for the MEC Outage Management System. 
  • Analyzes and reviews system operational data, provides periodic updates on system performance, provides direction on areas of improvement to sustain high reliability.
  • Addresses membership service concerns.
  • Develops and provides budget information for recommended electrical system improvements and modifications.
  • Acts as a resource and provides technical expertise for/to other departments to resolve electrical system problems and recommends corrective action.
  • Acts as a liaison between Power Suppliers, Large Power Members, Agencies and MEC concerning system growth and reliability.
  • Prepares 1,3,or 5 year construction work plans.
  • Performs annual transmission, substation and distribution system studies/analysis (voltage drops, coordination studies, capacitor placements, Arc Flash Hazard Analysis, etc.).
  • Assists the System Planning and Reliability Manager in supervision of  mapping system to ensure MEC’s mapping is kept up to date for engineering, operations and the management team for planning and responding to member requests and concerns.
  • Responsible to establish weekly meeting to keep all departments up to date on system planning and reliability issues.
  • Works as part of a team for the development, preparation and maintenance of MEC’s Mapping System, related database file and software.
  • Establish a work order data base to assist staking engineers with work order history for more efficient future design.
  • Develops engineering information for lean applications.
  • Calculates cost of service, large power minimums and contractual requirements.
  • Investigates and recommends standards for construction and application of electrical equipment and recommends new products material and equipment.
  • In conjunction with the Operations Manager, Manager of Engineering Services and the Chief Operating Officer, provides leadership support in responding to emergency restoration and storm damage.
  • Owner of MEC SCADA system.  Responsible for the operations of and maintenance on the MEC SCADA system. 
  • Performs all responsibilities in accordance with MEC’s Policies and Operating Procedures, National Electric Safety Code, National Electrical Code, RUS Standards and OSHA Regulations.
  • Other Duties as assigned by the System Planning and Reliability Manager.


  • Follows policies and procedures; upholds organizational values; works with ethics and integrity.
  • Identifies and resolves problems in a timely manner; gathers and analyzes information skillfully; develops alternative solutions; works well in group problem solving situations.
  • Manages difficult or emotional member situations; responds promptly to member needs; solicits member feedback to improve service; responds to requests for service and assistance.
  • Focuses on solving conflicts, not blaming; listens to others without interrupting; keeps emotions under control; remains open to new and to others’ ideas.
  • Speaks and writes clearly and informatively in positive or negative situations; listens and gets clarification; responds well to questions; participates in meetings.
  • Develops workable implementation plans; communicates changes effectively; prepares and supports those affected by change; monitors transition and evaluates results.
  • Approaches others in a tactful manner; reacts well under pressure; accepts responsibility for own actions.
  • Pursues training and development opportunities; strives to continually build knowledge and skills; shares expertise with others.
  • Observes safety and security procedures; reports potentially unsafe conditions; uses equipment and materials properly.
  • Looks for ways to improve and promote quality; demonstrates accuracy and thoroughness.
  • Treats people with respect in actions and speech; supports affirmative action and respects diversity.
  • Exhibits sound and accurate judgment; includes appropriate people in decision making process.
  • Prioritizes and plans work activities; uses time effectively; sets and achieves challenging goals.
  • Adapts to changes in work environment; manages competing demands.
  • Volunteers readily; asks for and offers help when needed.
  • Maintains and promotes a positive, professional attitude.
  • Views the Cooperative as a unit of interdependent functions and assists when needed.
  • Is consistently at work and on time; ensures work responsibilities are covered when absent.

Qualifications: To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill and or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

Education/Experience: Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering desired; Bachelor Degree in some Engineering Discipline required; 5+ years’ experience in a highly responsible engineering capacity responsible for the improvements of electrical transmission, substation and distribution facilities, desired.


  • Ability to maintain a strong sense of propriety concerning confidential matters.
  • Ability to maintain a good working relationships with members, director, managers, supervisors, fellow employees, representatives of other utilities, outside consultants and the public.
  • Knowledge of RUS construction specifications, National Electrical Safety Code, OSHA regulations and National Electric Code
  • Proficient in the use of WindMil Engineering Analysis, Excel, Microsoft Word and AutoCAD
  • Ability to make decisions within established precedent and with limited supervision
  • Personal characteristics shall include integrity, motivations, positive professional image, courtesy and good attendance.


Abilities & Skills:  Must be able to communicate effectively both orally and written, with the capability to effectively teach, mentor, and coach personnel to achieve desired performance.  Must relate well with all types of people and have the ability to listen, as well as to present and explain circumstances and results.  Must be able to handle confidential information and gain the respect of others.  Must be able to positively represent the Cooperative and effectively communicate with and to the general public.  Must have the technical aptitude to logically and objectively evaluate obstructions and impediments to plans and programs, make rational independent decision, and develop reasonable solutions to problems.  Must have, or be able to acquire, sufficient technical knowledge to understand and relate government regulations and safety issues to achieve the requirements of the position.  Must have a general understanding of utility applied technology to proficiently utilize technology applications in support of the department’s and Cooperative’s objectives and requirements.

Language Skills: Ability to read and interpret documents such as safety rules, operating and maintenance instructions and procedure manuals. Ability to write routine reports and correspondence. Ability to speak effectively before groups of members or employees of organization.

Mathematical Skills: Ability to add, subtract, multiply and divide in all units of measure, using whole numbers, common fractions and decimals. Ability to compute rate, ratio and percent and to draw and interpret bar graphs.

Reasoning Ability: Ability to apply common sense understanding to carry out instructions furnished in written, oral or diagram form.

Physical Demands:

Subject to both inside and outside environmental conditions and temperature changes. Some overnight travel to industry trade shows and training conferences is required.

Frequent physical activity to include walking, bending, lifting up to 25 pounds, occasional lifting in excess of 25 pounds, climbing, crouching, kneeling, reaching, crawling, pushing, and pulling. May spend long periods of time driving and/or riding in company vehicles to reach remote areas of the service territory.

Must be able to communicate clearly for work and safety compliance. The noise level in the work environment may range for moderate to loud.