Prompt Engineer vs. AI Engineer: Which Expert Does Your Business Need?

Thousands of businesses have started using generative AI, like AI ChatGPT, Jasper, Dall-E, Scribe, etc., to boost their productivity. And to make the best out of these tools, many of those companies hire a separate specialist — an AI prompt engineer. 

Let’s learn how this role differs from an AI software engineer and which expert your business needs more. 

Prompt Engineering vs. AI Engineering

73% of US marketers use generative AI tools. Globally, the AI market size is predicted to equal nearly $208 billion by the end of 2023 and reach almost $2 trillion by 2030. This means that Artificial Intelligence embraces more industries, and using this technology “smartly” becomes a critical competitive advantage. 

But before we get into the details of what we mean by “smartly,” let’s understand the game’s players. 

AI Engineering Is the Development of AI Tools

AI engineering is responsible for creating machine algorithms that can understand and write texts, recognize human speech and reply, analyze and create images and videos, compose music, and produce code. 

An AI/ML engineer designs applications that simulate humans. These specialists know development methodologies and Machine Learning and usually code in Java, C, and Python. The average AI software engineer salary in the US equals $153,833 per year. 

Prompt Engineering Is Fine-Tuning Generative AI Tools

Prompt engineering is responsible for crafting and improving text queries or instructions (prompts) to AI instruments. And the more specific this input is, the more relevant the result you get. 

So, the “programming language” of a prompt engineer is English, Spanish, French, Italian, or any other language the GenAI tool understands. 

Prompt engineers can help you meet two goals. Firstly, these experts can improve the responses of the GenAI tools you’ll release. Secondly, they can ask third-party software to perform tasks for you. 

A prompt engineer must possess good communication skills, have critical thinking, and know industry specifics. Ideally, these professionals need programming experience to help them understand how algorithms behave. 

The AI prompt engineer salary in the US can reach $300,000. However, the Khan Academy’s job announcement shows the remuneration of $127,423-$159,279 annually.  

As AI impacts our business and private lives, reports and forecasts about it might seem interesting.  

Job Losses and Labor Productivity

  • Goldman Sachs estimates that AI tools can impact the equivalent of 300,000 million full-time jobs worldwide. The researchers also analyzed the responsibilities of 900 occupations in the US and concluded that ⅔ of them are exposed to automation. They assume that AI can take on 25%-50% of the tasks of these professionals.  
  • The Accenture research states that LLMs can impact 40% of the working time of an employed US resident. Banking, insurance, software and platforms, and capital markets are the top 4 industries prone to automation or augmentation impact from AI. 

However, both sources stated that a high potential for AI impact doesn’t automatically equal a job loss. The estimates mean that machines will help employees be more effective rather than leave them unemployed. 

Most jobs will transform into the collaboration of people and AI-driven tools. The human+AI combination may result in productivity growth that could drive a 7% increase in global GDP.  

Interest in Prompt Engineering

The popularity of the “prompt engineering” query in Google Search in the US equaled 2 points (out of 100) in the middle of December 2022. At the end of March 2023, the score was 100, while by the middle of April, it dropped to 72. 

After ups and downs, the score reached 43 by mid-November and is projected to be around 60 by December 2, 2023. The term was most searched in the District of Columbia, Washington, California, Massachusetts, and New Jersey. 

The increase in the search frequency for “prompt engineering” keywords skyrocketed by 4,300% during the last 5 years. 

LinkedIn users mentioned generative AI and its products 60% more during January-September 2023. Accenture has estimated that nearly 6 in 10 entities plan to learn from ChatGPT, while over 40% of companies intend to invest in AI in 2023. 

Demand for Prompt and AI Engineers

To meet future challenges, companies will have to create new AI tools and learn how to use this technology. For this, organizations will need experts. And we can already see how AI redesigns the job market and adds new roles.

For example, LinkedIn shows that businesses increased the number of job announcements for positions like software engineer AI and prompt engineer. As of December 2023, the number of vacancies for “AI Engineer” in the United States “Posted Anytime” equaled 1,096. With the “Past Week” filter, the platform returns 405 jobs.

Difference Between an AI Prompt Engineer and an AI ML Engineer

Above, we’ve briefly answered the question, “What is a prompt engineer?” And in this section, we’ll check the characteristics of an AI developer and a prompt engineer. The table below might help you better understand the similarities and discrepancies between the two roles. 

ParametersAI Prompt EngineerAI ML Engineer
Educational Backgrounds
  • Certifications in AI-related fields
  • A degree in computer science or Information Technology sometimes is not required
  • Bachelor’s degree in data science, IT, or computer science
  • AI-related certification programs and courses
Skill Sets
  • Programming skills
  • Excellent communication skills and creative thinking
  • Understanding of ML, NLP (Natural Language Processing), and experience with LLMs
  • Familiarity with data analysis techniques
  • Proficiency in Python, Java, C++, Scala, R, and TypeScript programming languages
  • Familiarity with Cassandra, Apache Spark, MongoDB, and Hadoop technologies for big data
  • Understanding of AI models and proficiency in ML algorithms
Key Responsibilities
  • Create text queries for AI-powered software
  • Analyze prompt effectiveness and optimize queries
  • Work with other teams to keep prompt generation in line with company goals
  • Creating AI models
  • Designing AI infrastructures
  • Creating APIs for integration with third-party software
  • Testing ML algorithms
Work Environments 
  • Working on-site or from home
  • Cooperation with cross-functional teams
  • Leveraging AI knowledge base for multiple industries (office and administrative support, sales, business and financial operations, legal, etc.)
  • Working in an office or remotely
  • Collaborating with other data scientists and technicians
  • Developing AI solutions for diverse industries (media, education, logistics, gaming, real estate, automotive, etc.)
Challenges and Problems
  • Continuous learning to leverage constantly improving technology
  • Complexity of LLMs
  • Necessity to embrace technical, linguistic, and psychology in one role
  • Storing and securing large volumes of data
  • Ensuring high-performance infrastructure
  • Getting enough high-quality data for training

Though both roles are titled engineers, the prompt expert isn’t a developer. For a professional getting answers from AI, coding skills can be optional, while an ML programmer also has to know statistics, probability, and mathematics. 

An AI Developer and a Prompt Engineer Salary

As a business owner, you want to know how much an AI expert can cost. So, below are the average hourly rates and monthly remunerations of an AI developer and a prompt engineer. 

CountryPrompt EngineerAI Developer
Hourly RateMonthly Salary Hourly RateMonthly Salary 
USA$30$5,248$76$12,785
UK$35$5,880$34$5,717
Netherlands $35$5,880$57$9,520
Germany$25$4,200$40$6,720
Ukraine$20$3,360$15$2,500

The table shows that AI professionals in the UK, the Netherlands, Germany, and Ukraine have lower salaries than their US colleagues. You’ll suffer minimal costs from Ukrainian AI experts. 

You can save even more with Mobilunity’s flexible cooperation models. For instance, you can hire chatbot developers part-time and engage them for several hours a week. 

Why is hiring an AI programmer or a remote prompt engineer from Ukraine so affordable? This is due to the lower cost of living in this country, so hiring, for instance, an ML consultant or building a dedicated tech team here is very cost-effective. 

4 Reasons Why Having a Prompt AI Engineer Is Vital for Your Business

What does a prompt engineer do? And why is this an essential job in each company? Whether you work on new generative AI software for sale, develop it for internal users, or buy a tool to automate your workflow, this professional will help. And here are the benefits you get.

  • Increased performance of your team. Let’s assume you use generative AI for crafting email sequences and creating Instagram posts. A copywriter will only need to set the task to a prompt engineer ChatGPT and then slightly edit the text. Such assistance can save hours of work and free the writing expert for more complicated tasks. 200 tech and educational companies have used ChatGPT in 2023. 
  • Saved costs. Purchasing an AI instrument and training your team to work with it can require significant investments. However, with time, optimized workflows will let founders cut costs. For example, the banking industry has 54% of tasks with high potential for automation and 12% for AI augmentation. Insurance has 48% and 14%, respectively.
  • Making data-driven decisions. AI tools can process gigabytes of data within seconds. This way, they arm a decision-maker with real-time information. Moreover, prompt engineers can get actionable insights from machines. For instance, marketers can personalize cold emails with leads’ details from social media or send messages to a new segment of prospects. In 2023, 10.8% of employees worldwide have tried using ChatGPT for work at least once.
  • Improved customer experience for your app. Prompt engineers will help you improve the generative AI tool you plan to release. For instance, a chat prompt engineer will ensure your chatbot communicates respectfully and without bias. An expert can make machine answers relevant, informative, reliable, and accurate. This might be the reason for ChatGPT’s popularity and ability to perform various tasks. 66% of tasks for which US employees used this tool in 2023 were to write code, 58% — to generate content, and 57% — for customer support. 

How Prompt Engineering Works 

Now, we’ll check several examples of how one of the top AI tools, ChatGPT, can help streamline routine tasks for various specialists. Please note that these prompts are simplified just to give you an idea of how generative AI works. 

Accounting

If you’re an accountant or a bookkeeper, here’s how you can use ChatGPT. Your prompts can look like this:

  • “Analyze this trial balance and identify if any adjustments are needed.”
  • “Review these account statements, bank transactions, and invoices and create a cash flow statement.”
  • “Check my accounts payable and receivable and show outstanding amounts.”

Software Development

At first sight, a text-generating service can’t help with writing code. However, ChatGPT boasts a colossal knowledge base across various domains, including software development. And that’s how a programmer can leverage AI technology and instruct the chat.

  • “You are a Python developer. Write a program to check if the web form contains name and email.”
  • “Act as a PHP developer. Write a piece of code for a currency exchange calculator.”
  • “Proofread my report and add descriptions. Advise what can be improved.”

Software Quality Assurance

ChatGPT is a great assistant for software testers who can significantly decrease their workload.

  • “Show me the 3 most common scenarios of how users can interact with this app.”
  • “Act as a Python developer. Generate code to identify broken links.”
  • “Write 3 use cases for a potential client who receives a promotional email and clicks the link to register for a conference.” 

Insurance

Insurance agents perform many repetitive tasks like identifying leads, scheduling appointments, preparing documents, etc. Below are a few ways ChatGPT can save their time and effort. 

  • “You are a copywriter. Compose a kind reminder email to inform the client about a missed payment. Offer to call us in case of questions.”
  • “Craft 3 Instagram ads that offer car insurance with low rates. State that drivers can save up to 30% on their car insurance.”

Marketing

Generating ideas for blog posts, creating content plans, developing concepts, writing video scripts, arranging webinars, etc., can be exhausting for marketers. Routine tasks can leave no space for creativity, which is vital for promoting products and services. Check a few prompts that can help avoid burnout.

  • “Give me 10 morning routine tips for weight loss with 15 keywords.”
  • “Generate 3 pitch ideas for a webinar to promote a copywriting course.” 
  • “Write a script for a 2-minute video that will promote our content.”

Sales

That’s what a sales representative can get from a ChatGPT. 

  • “Act as a sales manager. Create a value proposition for software that lands 100% of emails to Inbox, avoiding the Spam folder.”
  • “Write 5 BANT questions to qualify potential buyers.”

Account Management

Account managers can take advantage of the AI technology and ask ChatGPT for help.

  • “You are an account manager of a company offering appointment-setting services. Identify the sentiment of the email below and advise if I can offer further cooperation now or later [add the email text].”
  • “You are an account manager who sells an email delivery tool. Craft a 100-word follow-up email for a prospect who responded he wanted to research competitors first.”

Is It Hard to Find a Chat GPT Prompt Engineer?

As the adoption of AI-powered tools grows, the demand for positions like prompt engineer Chat GPT will also increase. LinkedIn shows the following number of job listings for the “AI engineer” in several countries. The number of AI experts available on this platform is much greater as many related titles include “AI” and most of them already have a job.

USAUKGermany PolandUkraine 
# of Jobs1,09613015924546
# of Talents61,00011,0008,7002,8001,200

Still, businesses have to find creative solutions for attracting AI professionals.

3 Ways to Hire an AI Prompt Engineer

Once you decide to grow your AI team and optimize workflow, you’ll wonder where to hire a AI developer. Below, you’ll see three popular ways to find this expert. 

Contract an AI Prompt Engineer Locally

This option assumes you employ experts in your city or country. If you’d like to find candidates independently, you’ll need to craft and advertise a role description. Try searching for applicants on job boards, LinkedIn, through your network, or with recruiters. You can employ an in-house AI professional or contract a freelance prompt engineer. 

Pros:

  • You’ll have common working hours
  • Your communication will be easy
  • You’ll get more control over in-house workers.

Cons:

  • You’ll have to pay insurance and benefits for employed workers
  • Recruiting can take time
  • You get no replacement guarantees.

Collaborate with a Prompt Engineering Agency

If you want to optimize business processes through prompt engineering without taking an expert on board, this option will fit you best. Third-party prompt engineers will analyze your workflow and operations and advise on improving them. They’ll identify tasks that can be automated, scale operations, assess risks, ensure compliance, etc. 

Pros:

  • You can see the transformation plan quickly
  • You’ll get guarantees that recommendations will work
  • You’ll immediately access a team of experts.

Cons:

  • You’ll only get consultation and training, but not implementation
  • You’ll need to research prompt engineering service providers.

Hire a Consultant Through a Nearshoring Provider 

Hiring tech talents at nearshore and offshore destinations will let you cut payroll costs and access highly skilled AI professionals. For instance, Mobilunity will hire a Ukraine-based Bard prompt engineer or a dedicated team of AI experts. You’ll get functional control over your remote staff while we handle administrative issues. 

Pros:

  • You save costs
  • You get replacement guarantees
  • You can scale up at any time
  • You select candidates.

Cons:

  • You’ll have to find a reliable vendor
  • Your team will be based in another country
  • You’ll need to wait 4-6 weeks.

Why Mobilunity 

Hiring your ChatGPT prompt engineer in Eastern Europe and saving 15-30% on costs sounds tempting. But you’ll find pretty many providers who promise to find technicians quickly and easily. In the example of Mobilunity, we’ll highlight three critical criteria that a reliable vendor should meet. 

  • 13 years in the business. Mobilunity has been finding technicians since 2010. We started by building Ukraine-based teams and consultants. But over time, we’ve expanded our services to Eastern and Western Europe, Asia, Latin America, and other destinations. The global pool of talents allows Mobilunity to find your engineers quickly and build tech teams within 4-6 weeks on average. 
  • 40+ satisfied clients worldwide. We’ve assembled teams for SaaS, e-commerce, and MarTech companies. Also, we’ve worked with agencies, marketplaces, and companies offering financial services. The US, UK, Canada, Japan, Israel, Spain, Germany, and Spain are some of our clients’ locations. So Mobilunity’s recruiters have experience in many IT markets and are ready for any challenges. 
  • Relevant use cases. Mobilunity can boast several cases of hiring prompt engineers during the boom in spring 2023. This was a challenge that our recruiters successfully accepted. So, we can close any position within several weeks for you. Do you need developers and QA engineers with advanced knowledge of ChatGPT, prompt engineering, and the Automatic Prompt Engineer (APE) framework? We can help. 

2 Cooperation Models with Mobilunity 

There are two ways we can hire an AI prompt engineer or Artificial Intelligence developer for you. 

Hiring a Full-Time Dedicated Team of AI Engineers

Do you need a dedicated and corporate culture-driven team of AI engineers? Is your project large and long-term? We’ll build a loyal squad that’ll deal with your tasks full-time. You stay focused on business while we arrange the working environment, transfer payrolls, and comply with local labor regulations. You pay a fixed-fee invoice once a month.

Engage a Part Time Prompt Engineer as a Consultant 

Does your project need an AI prompt engineer and an AI/ML engineer for less than 40 hours per week? No problem, you can hire these experts part-time. This option will allow you to optimize costs as you’ll pay only for hours worked. So this cooperation is perfect for small and limited budgets. However, you can switch to the full-time mode or add members to your team anytime. 

Think that Hiring an AI Prompt Engineer Is Too Hard? Contact Mobilunity!

All salaries and prices mentioned within the article are approximate NET numbers based on the research done by our in-house Recruitment Team. Please use these numbers as a guide for comparison purposes only and feel free to use the contact form to inquire on the specific cost of the talent according to your vacancy requirements and chosen model of engagement.

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