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posted by Kipas Repair JB @ 7:48 AM, ,

How to be a Professional Engineer (PE) with IR Status?

I have been asked several times the steps and how to be a professional engineer having an IR status in Malaysia. Due to that, I thought it is better for me to write a special guide explaining step by step what should be done. I'll try to make this guide as compact and short possible (but still resourceful) so that it won't waste any of your time.

1. Register with BEM

If you just graduate from university in Malaysia or have graduated for several years already, register with Board of Engineers, Malaysia (BEM). Please take note that registration with the Board of Engineers upon graduation is compulsory under the Engineers Act 1967 for all practising engineers. To know the procedure and requirement to register with BEM, click here. To download the registration form, click here. You may need a professional engineer to stamp and sign your application form, degree certificate, results transcript etc. (Check list on list of documents to be prepared are shown in the application form). It will take you few weeks to get BEM membership number. Example of BEM membership number is like this: 49818A. This membership number is imperative and will be required when you apply as a graduate member with IEM. (BEM Registration cost: RM50).

2. Register with IEM

After you get your BEM membership number, you can fill it up and apply to be a graduate member under Institution of Engineers, Malaysia (IEM). To know the procedure and requirement to register with IEM, click here. Now, it is easier as you can apply it online (link to apply online) (Check list on list of documents to be prepared are shown in the application form). After you submit completed form, wait few weeks.

(IEM Registration cost: (a)RM180 if you are under 30 years old {consisting of RM80 for entrance fee and RM100 for first year IEM fee} or (b) RM235 if you are above 30 years old {consisting of RM80 for entrance fee and RM155 for first year IEM fee}).

3. Training / Mentoring Process

After your IEM graduate membership is approved, and presumably you work as an engineer (practicing, academic/research), you can start seeking for a mentor. You can ask IEM head quarters located in Petaling Jaya for the list of mentors available in your engineering discipline. If you are a chemical engineer, you need to have a chemical engineer mentor. If you are a civil engineer, you need to have a civil engineer mentor. Similarly for other engineering disciplines. After you have identified and contacted your mentor, you need to filled up a form to IEM to inform that that person is your mentor. Then you can start meeting / discussing / contacting your mentor. 

Your mentor will be the person who will check / guide you to be a matured professional engineer. You need to prepare monthly report and quarterly report and submit them to your mentor. At the end of each year, you then need to submit the 1 year report to IEM HQ. A special committee will evaluate and check your report. The entire mentoring process will take 3 years. Supposedly, by this time (that 3 years), you are already trained to be a professional engineer, capable to prepare good level of proposal / report etc. This can be observed from the quality and maturity of the report that you prepared. To read IEM Log Book Training Scheme and Guide click here.

Please take note that your the overall training process is conducted by IEM and your mentor is a member of IEM as well. Within this 3 years, it is advisable that you undergo all the 3 mandatory courses that is required by BEM which are (i) Safety and Health at Work (ii) Engineering Management Practice (iii) Code of Ethics and Regulation. Traditionally, the trainings are offered by IEM Training Center (IEMTC) in Petaling Jaya. IEMTC will provide a form that looked like this. However, if you are in other states in Malaysia, you can refer to the regional IEM office. Sometimes the regional IEM office conduct those mandatory courses. As in Johor Bahru, besides IEM Southern Branch (IEMSB), UTM under the Centre For Academic Leadership & Professional Development (CALPD), UTMLead also conduct in-house BEM Mandatory Courses for UTM Staff (link). (Log Book Cost: RM10. Mandatory courses cost: RM1050 (RM350/course as stated by IEMTC form, courses in Petaling Jaya). Don't forget to consider your traveling, food and accommodation course if you travel from other state)). p/s. You will save cost if the mandatory courses are conducted/organize nearby your place/state/city.

4. Professional Interview (PI) to attain Professional Engineer (PE) status - Initial Process

After 3 years, your mentor will hopefully say that you are ready to sit for the Professional Interview (PI) and the special committee that checks/evaluate your report annually will also recommend you for the PI. The PI are conducted regularly throughout the country for members aspiring to attain PE status. For more information about this, IEM has prepared Professional Interview Guidelines and several essay samples (section B) to be downloaded and referred (link).

By this time, it is best that you start filling in IEM PI(1) form [APPLICATION FOR ELECTION AS CORPORATE MEMBER] and standby to fill up IEM PI(2) form [PROFESSIONAL INTERVIEW – DECLARATION AND CERTIFICATION OF DOCUMENTS FORM] - Download link for both forms. 

At the same time, it is best for you to prepare your (a) Training and Experience Report (T&E), and (b) Project Technical Report. The T&E report is basically a report of yourself comprising all of your training and experience since you graduated your bachelor degree. Hence, it is wise to keep a systematic record of all your works, tasks, responsibilities, job scopes etc from all your work(s), positions(s) from various companies (if you have worked in more than one company). In addition, you must make it a point to maintain good and healthy relationship with your previous employer(s), just in case you need to refer back to them for certain things/verification etc.

The Project Technical report should be a specific project that you have performed previously that comprised of all engineering elements. This include but not limited to the problem itself, engineering design, calculation, project management, safety-health-environment, costing etc. Having a real engineering design solution will be far better than a conceptual design. Take note of that in mind.

After submission of IEM PI(1) form, the IEM committee will see whether you are eligible for the Professional Interview or not (Check list on list of documents to be prepared are shown in the application form). Your name will be published in the magazine Jurutera, to advertise that you plan to sit for the Professional Interview. If anybody feels that you are not eligible for the interview, they should let IEM knows about it. Normally, everything will be OK if you are an ethical engineer. Then you are required to fill up IEM PI(II) form. IEM committee will assess the form and assign a Principal Interviewer to handle your interview. There will be a second interview as well. However, normally the Principal Interviewer or IEM secretariat will liaise with you on the interview. By this time also you need to get yourself familiar with the engineering codes of ethics. (Professional Interview fee cost: RM150 for graduate member, RM200 for non-graduate member)

5. The Professional Interview (PI)

If everything is fine, the Principal Interviewer or IEM secretariat will contact you to decide the date and venue for the interview. They will also request for the T&E Report and Project Technical Report. It is imperative that you prepare a very good reports for them to evaluate during the Professional Interview.

During the interview, both panels will interview you. The interview process will be in a relaxed atmosphere and they will attempt to check all requirements from you. After the interview, you need to sit for the essay questions. There are all together 2 essay questions that you need to do. The first one is related to you Project Technical Report and the second one is related to the engineering code of ethics. Duration of the essay question is 3 hours.After you complete everything, just wait for the result.

6. Result of Professional Interview

The result could take about 1 to 2 months to be officially announced. You can also call or email the IEM secretariat in charge to know the result. After the IEM committee monthly meeting, if you passed, a certificate acknowledging that you are upgraded as an IEM Corporate Member will be produced and delivered to you. This is a massive result and the ticket for you attaining the IR status is almost there.

7. Getting the IR status Endorsed

Now, you should prepare all the paper works required by BEM to upgrade yourself as a Professional Engineer. You need to fill Form BI (PERMOHONAN UNTUK PENDAFTARAN SEBAGAI JURUTERA PROFESIONAL)(download link) and prepare the following are:

(i) Application shall be accompanied with a processing fee of RM50.00 and a registration fee of RM300,00 in *postal order/money order/bank draft/cheque made payable to Lembaga Jurutera Malaysia.
(ii) Certificate (s) of training.
(iii) Copy of Board’s letter on passing of the Professional Assessment Examination (Professional Interview) or copy of MIEM certificate.
(iv) Copy of degree certificate.
(v) Copy of registration letter as Graduate Engineer with the Board of Engineers Malaysia.
(vi) Photocopy of birth certificate / identity card.
(vii) Passport size photo-please write your name and registration number.
(viii) Evidence of compliance to Regulation 22(1)(b) i.e. certificate of attendance only for Graduate Engineer registered after 1/1/2005.

Submit all of them to BEM and wait. If everything is fine, it will normally take about 2-3 weeks until your certificate of IR endorsement is couriered to you. However, if there is some problem or incomplete documentation (normally the Certificate of Training), then you will need to complete whatever necessary, then resubmit to BEM.

It is important to note that all photostated documents submitted together with this application must be certified-true-copy by a registered Professional Engineer.

(i) All certificates of training must be on the letterhead of the department/company addressed to the Registrar of the Board of Engineers Malaysia and the originals should be submitted to the Board. The certificate should state the period of practical training, post held and summary of the work you have undergone. The certificate of the training must be certified by the registered Professional Engineer/Professional Engineers under whom you have obtained your training.

(ii) For those involve in teaching profession, he/she must undergo at least one year of industrial training under the supervision of a Professional Engineer in the same branch or engineering as that practiced by the Graduate Engineer.

(iii) The name of the Professional Engineer signing the certificate of training must be clearly stated together with his Professional Engineer registration number and the branch of engineering he is qualified has to be indicated beside his name.

(iv) The Professional Engineers certifying the applicant's prescribed training must be of the same discipline as that of the applicant.

(v) If you have worked in more than one department/company in the 3 years, you need to submit two or more certificates. All the certificates of training submitted must be certified by the respective registered Professional Engineer under whom you have undergone your training. 

If you still have doubt on the IR endorsement part after you obtained you already become IEM Corporate Member, you can contact 603-2696 7095 / 7096 / 7097 / 7098 or email: bem1@jkr.gov.my or enquiry@bem.org.my. (Processing fee cost: RM50.00, registration fee cost: RM300).

8. Maintaining your PE Status

You need to maintain certain training CPD hours while working. Don't worry, this does not mean that you have to attend all trainings/seminars that have BEM and IEM CPD hours. You should do that when you can. However, part or most of your work can get you qualify for the CPD hours.

Just go to BEM website (http://www.bem.org.my). Click the image to enlarge.

Then, fill up your username and password. For first timer, you need to contact BEM to get this information.

Then fill up your personal details and academic qualifications. Next, you can start filling in the CPD Records.

The online CPD record makes it easier for us to keep and maintain our record. For first timer, just click Register New CPD record. Then, you'll arrive at a new page to insert all your activities. The CPD hours will be automatically calculated. It is very simple and easy.

At the end of every year in December, make sure you complete filling up all your activities, jobs, tasks, assignments, meetings, trainings, courses, seminars, consultancy, projects etc. Then after everything is complete, you can click the Renewal link to renew your PE status for the following year.

The PE status must be renewed each and every year. You should not ignore this, especially after all the 3 years of hard work preparing all those reports and attending the mandatory courses. (BEM annual renewal cost for professional engineer: RM200, IEM annual renewal cost for member: RM160)

Summary of cost involved (for applicant under 30 years old)

No Item Cost
1 BEM Registration cost RM50
2 IEM Graduate member registration cost RM180
3 IEM Log Book Cost RM10
4 BEM Mandatory courses cost RM1050
5 IEM Professional Interview fee cost RM150
6 BEM Processing fee for PE cost RM50.00
7 BEM Registration fee for PE cost RM300

Summary of cost involved (for applicant above 30 years old)

No Item Cost
1 BEM Registration cost RM50
2 IEM Graduate member registration cost RM235
3 IEM Log Book Cost RM10
4 BEM Mandatory courses cost RM1050
5 IEM Professional Interview fee cost RM150
6 BEM Processing fee for PE cost RM50.00
7 BEM Registration fee for PE cost RM300


Note:  This is rough estimation of the cost from applying as graduate member to applying as professional engineer within 3 years+. The estimation of cost is correct at the time of publication of this article. Extra cost may incur during traveling/meeting your mentor and attending mandatory courses/other IEM activities in order to accumulate CPD hour. The estimation of cost also does not include maintaining your yearly PE status. Take note that the current annual cost to maintain both IEM and BEM renewal fee are RM160 and RM200, respectively.


If there is any questions, feel free to ask them in the comment area below. This article is last updated on the 10th of July 2014. I will continue updating this article from time to time. Feel free to share this article to those interested to be a professional engineer. I apologies for the lack of clarity and length of the article.

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Instead of reading, why not share your writing of chemical engineering knowledge and experiences here, in Chemical Engineering World blog? It will be interesting. It doesn't matter if you are still a chemical engineering students or you just work as an engineer or you are a very experience engineer. Sharing your story would be great. I am also still learning and would like to learn something from you. Just email me to share something in this blog. You can share stories, articles, photos, infographics, podcast, videos etc. 

posted by Kipas Repair JB @ 12:25 AM, ,

The Author


I’m Zaki. I used to be a project, process and chemical engineer. Few years ago I successfully became a Chartered Engineer (IChemE) and Professional Engineer (BEM). I'm now employed as a chemical engineering educator/researcher/consultant. Hope you like reading my blog. I welcome any feedback from you. My email: zaki.yz[alias]gmail.com. TQ!

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