In the current build up to Brexit, it is crucial for the government and UK employers to be realistic about what can happen to the Engineering and Manufacturing sectors.
According to 'Engineering UK' 61% of UK businesses were not confident there will be enough people with the skills to fill their high-skilled job vacancies.
According to the Royal Academy of Engineering, the UK needs about 200,000 new engineers and engineering technicians a year until 2022. It will be virtually impossible to find this amount of Engineers with UK talent alone.
Filling the demand for engineers in the UK will generate an additional £27 billion per year for the UK economy from 2022. As for other projects (such as HS2), 7,200 engineering and technical workers are needed in high speed rail by 2020; which is just 12 months away.
Starting salaries for engineering and technology graduates were 18% higher than graduates overall but is this encouraging young people to take engineering and technology courses?
There are several challenges that the industry also faces such as not enough STEM teachers and not enough diversity (ethnic minorities and women).
The UK has in fact had many incentives and campaigns in place surrounding the encouragement of the above including immigration to try and close the skills gap.
Any non-EEA individual must obtain a skilled work visa before they can enter the UK and begin their contract. These skilled worker visas usually last three years with a reduced fee due to applying for a skills shortage occupation.
Whilst there will be uncertainty for some time, there will always be demand and opportunities for all within the Engineering and Manufacturing sectors.
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