Engineers, How Employable Are You?

Engineers, How Employable Are You?

Gone are the days of hunkering down at work to weather the economic storm, a time when most workers were merely thankful to be employed. Today, the perception prevails that career opportunities are on the rise– especially for engineers.

Kelly® surveyed engineering professionals to gauge their views on the job market. Engineering professionals were asked if they believe that they are in high demand, and if they feel like they’re in a good bargaining position to secure a similar or better job. The results show engineers are more confident and empowered than ever, with 62 percent feeling they are in high demand and 68 percent saying they are in a good position to bargain.

But is the current perception correct? Are you overconfident about your employability? To answer these questions, it’s best to consider how your skills are perceived by those who make the hiring decisions.

Engineering hiring managers were asked how they perceive the talent shortage and what they see as the future supply and demand for the engineering positions they hire for. The results? More than half of the hiring managers (56 percent) agree that engineers are in short supply, and just over half (52 percent) see the shortage continuing in the future. 

This is good news for engineers. When comparing what engineering workers observe to what hiring managers identify with, however, a difference in opinion can be noticed:

  • Engineers who feel they are in-demand - 62%
  • Hiring managers who feel there is an engineering talent shortage - 56%

While hiring managers believe that engineers are in demand, the research shows that engineering workers perceive their demand to be slightly higher than it may actually be.

Today, companies use a variety of tools to determine a worker’s merits and “fit” for a position. When it comes to negotiating your next engineering position, it’s important to know how in-demand your skills are. In any job market, professionals should never be so overconfident that they underestimate the importance of nailing the interview or standing out from the pack of applicants. In fact, a whopping 86 percent of engineering hiring managers said the top mistake candidates make during an interview, which prevents them from moving forward, is acting arrogant or ungrateful for the opportunity.

Survey methodology: The 2015 Hiring Manager Research (U.S./Canada) was conducted by RDA Group on behalf of Kelly. Over 1,000 hiring managers in the U.S. and Canada were surveyed. Participants had direct hiring responsibilities for talent in healthcare, engineering, finance and accounting, IT, and scientific fields. Results represent a cross section of industries and career disciplines. Of the total surveyed, 272 were engineering hiring managers.