The UK needs a million more skilled engineers

7th November 2017
Source: EEF
Posted By : Anna Flockett
The UK needs a million more skilled engineers

There are more than a quarter of a million skilled engineers which are needed each year to meet the demand from engineering and manufacturing companies, EEF, the manufacturers’ organisation can reveal. The 6th November marks the beginning of Tomorrow’s Engineers Week - a week dedicated to inspiring the UK’s next generation of engineers and encouraging young people into the profession to plug the skills gap in some of Britain’s biggest companies.

Here are some key facts to explain why as an industry we must encourage more young people into a career in engineering:

  • Job opportunities: Engineering UK estimates that 265,000 skilled entrants are required annually to meet demand for engineering companies through to 2024
  • Committed to recruiting young people: 66% of manufacturers committed to recruiting an engineering graduate in 2016 and 66% committed to recruiting an engineering apprentice last year also.
  • Awareness raising: 72% of manufacturers say raising awareness of apprenticeships  will encourage more young people into manufacturing - 63% say the same of STEM-promoting initiatives between schools and business
  • Engineering pays: Chemical engineering graduates have the second highest paid starting salary at £28,603. Undertaking an engineering and manufacturing apprenticeship can net you an additional £111,900 in lifetime earnings.
  • Perception progress: 51% of 11-16 year olds would “consider a career in engineering” up from 40% last year
  • Pride in our sector: Over two-thirds (67%) of UK adults say they would be proud to work in manufacturing

Verity O’Keefe, Head of Education and Skills Policy at EEF said: “It is great to be celebrating the fifth year of Tomorrow’s Engineers Week, sending up the flare to young people, parents and teachers about the wonderful world of engineering. There is so much to talk up about a career in our sector – great pay, multiple opportunities and the chance to work in an innovative and dynamic industry.

"There are many pathways for young people to choose to pursue their careers in engineering – whether through an ‘earn while you learn’ apprenticeship, into the industry as graduate or straight into employment through a technical route. However you make it in, able and ambitious young people will be rewarded and recognised.

"We need to be shouting from the rooftops about the opportunities that lie ahead for young people and this week is the perfect opportunity to do just that.”

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