Today marks the beginning of Tomorrow’s Engineers Week – a week dedicated to inspiring the UK’s next generation of engineers. Here are some key facts from EEF, the manufacturers’ organisation, to explain why it is so vital to encourage more young people into a career in engineering today:

  • Job opportunities: There will be over 2.5 million job openings in engineering companies up to 2022 – manufacturers need to find almost one million workers by 2020 simply to replace those retiring or leaving industry
  • Recruitment plan: 66% of manufacturers plan to recruit an engineering graduate in the next three years and 66% plan to recruit an engineering apprentice in the next 12 months
  • Employability: According to Engineering UK, 66% of engineering and technology graduates were in full-time employment within 6 months of graduating, compared with 58% of all graduates
  • Rules of attraction: 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 
  • Careers advice?: Six in ten firms (60%) say better-informed careers advice at school will encourage more young people into engineering.

Verity O’Keefe, Employment and Skills Policy Adviser at EEF, says “this week is about sending up a flare to alert young people, parents and teachers to the wealth of opportunity in engineering. A career in our sector ticks all the boxes, offering jobs, good pay and the chance of an interesting and dynamic long-term career.

“But the opportunities go deeper than that – engineering also offers young people the chance to choose the career path that is right for them. There is no right or wrong way – whether you choose to ‘earn and learn’ as an apprentice or join industry as a graduate, the fact is that your choice will be respected and your ability and ambition rewarded.

“It’s critical that we get this message out – our sector has much to offer and by helping young people to understand this we will give them every reason to want to get involved.”