Recruitment up as business expands for two-thirds of companies

Businesses in the engineering and technology sector are continuing to expand and recruit new staff despite the gloomy state of the economy, according to research published by the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET).

The IET’s annual skills survey of 400 companies across the engineering and technology sector reveals that nearly two-thirds (62%) of all companies interviewed cited business expansion as a reason for recruitment.

In addition, a high proportion (63%) of companies expect to recruit staff this year. By sector this ranges from 90% in civil engineering, 78% in energy, 73% in defence and aerospace, 72% in electrical and 70% in electronics.

Although companies are primarily recruiting from the UK (94%), the European Union remains the second largest source of recruitment, and much of this (31%) is from newer member states.

Robin McGill, IET chief executive, said: “Unlike other surveys, ours is entirely focused on engineering and technology, so the results give a clear view of what is happening just in this sector.

“Although economic predictions are increasingly pessimistic, the survey shows engineering and technology is a vibrant, expanding sector.”