265,000 more skilled engineers needed annually in UK

Posted on 6 Nov 2017 by Jonny Williamson

More than a quarter of a million skilled engineers are needed each year to meet the demand from engineering and manufacturing companies, EEF has revealed.

CROP-welding-apprentice pre-apprenticeships Engineers
April 2017 marks the start of the transformation of skills funding for engineering businesses large and small.

Today (6 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.

These key facts 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: More than two-thirds (67%) of UK adults say they would be proud to work in manufacturing.

You might also be interested in: Top five manufacturing myths busted

Head of Education and Skills Policy at EEF, Verity O’Keefe explained: “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 a 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.”