Engineering and technology graduates have a better prospect of finding a job related to their degree than other graduates, according to an organisation that promotes the contribution of engineers to society.
Paul Jackson, chief executive of Engineering UK, says that 67 per cent of engineering graduates who go into employment secure a post that uses what they have studied. “While new engineering and technology graduates may take longer to enter the workplace, they are more likely to go into jobs related to their field of study than other graduates,” he says.
Engineering UK says figures for 2008/9 show that 49 per cent of full-time engineering and technology graduates were in full-time employment six months after graduation, and a further 18 per cent had gone on to further study.
Jackson says that despite the recession, engineering salaries are holding up, with the average starting salary for graduate engineers around £25,000. “This indicates that there is no large over supply of applicants for engineering jobs,” he said. “In fact, the unemployment rate among registered engineers is well below UK average at just one per cent.”
Despite the impact of the recession, felt by all industries, engineering graduates have more to look forward to than others, says Engineering UK. “Over a ten year period it is predicted that the manufacturing sector alone will need to recruit an additional 587,000 people, as current staff leave for retirement and other reasons. This will fuel demand for skilled workers, and those that have skills, which can be applied to the burgeoning low carbon market will have the competitive edge,” it says.
In terms of the graduate job market in 2010, there were on average 68 applications for vacancies in engineering or industrial companies and 67 applications for vacancies in IT/telecommunications. This was similar to the overall average of 69 applications for each graduate vacancy. However, vacancies in construction companies or the consultancy sector had attracted only 48 applications per job.