The Engineering Barometer is an annual report from Engineers Ireland that tracks developments in engineering education, employment and perspectives. It has become an established resource for engineers, educators, policy-makers and recruiters.
One-in-five engineers was placed on a wage subsidy scheme at some point in the past year (falling to 2% in January 2021), suggesting that engineering organisations did not experience significant declines in revenue during 2020. In fact, two-thirds of engineers increased their salary in the past year and just one-in-twenty reported receiving a pay cut.
Approximately one-quarter of junior engineers said that their career had stalled due to the pandemic, and a similar proportion were in receipt of the wage subsidy at some point. Nevertheless, junior engineers remain positive about the engineering profession: more than 80% agreed that engineering is a rewarding career for young people and 74% said that there are plenty of job opportunities.
Engineering directors and managers are confident about growth in their organisations in 2021 with 79% planning to recruit engineers. Utilities (which include electricity, water, gas and telecommunications) intend to expand their engineering workforces in the year ahead with 94% of these companies looking to hire engineers.
Engineers across all sectors, disciplines and demographics see their role in protecting society with more than 90% stating that engineers are essential to reduce risks to public health and safety. There has been a substantial rise in the number of engineers strongly agreeing with this perspective over the last three years.