Survey finds engineering skills shortage a problem

Survey finds engineering skills shortage a problem
Melanie Reynolds Two-thirds of the UK’s electronics companies consider a shortage in engineering skills to be one of the most serious problems affecting their business, a survey has found. The survey by the Federation of the Electronics Industry (FEI) has found that the shortages are not confined to specific jobs, disciplines or industry sectors but includes all skilled activities in the electronics industry. Telecommunications operator BT confirmed that there is an industry problem. “We do notice problems in recruiting in technical areas,” said a BT spokesman. “But we obviously have a bit of an advantage in that BT is a well known company.” The company recruited 540 graduates last year. Pace Micro Electronics is seeking to recruit 100 R&D engineers this year to work on its digital TV products. “We’re fortunate that we’re in a rapidly growing business so we can attract engineers,” said Tim Fern, director of engineering, broadcast at Pace. However, the shortage of suitable graduates is putting pressure on pay and conditions as companies like Pace compete to recruit the best engineers. “We’re offering increasing benefits and salaries,” said Fern. The UK education system is currently producing less than 3,000 software engineers a year and an increasing number of them are going into IT. It is a situation that the government is well aware of, according to Fern, who has already lobbied DTI ministers, John Battle and Barbara Roche in his quest for action on the problem.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*