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UK faces shortfall of 1 million engineers by 2030

Research by strategy firm Stonehaven has identified that the UK will face a shortfall of around one million engineers by 2030, which could threaten the viability of major engineering projects such as HS2.

“The research confirms Logistics UK’s concerns about the scale of the shortage of engineers in the UK,” says Michelle Gardner, Deputy Director of Policy of Logistics UK.

“The UK economy relies on engineers to fulfil a variety of roles across multiple industries, including logistics, manufacturing and construction; it is imperative government and industry works together to take action to address this shortfall before we see projects stall and day-to-day operations seriously impacted.” 

According to the research, around 184 major engineering projects have been announced since 2020, with these projects expected to create 1.2 million jobs.  

The research found that two thirds of the population reported that they had never thought of a career in engineering, despite 80% expressing admiration for the profession. 

Gen-Z (those born between 1997 and 2012) were the most reluctant (30%) to consider a career in engineering, with 34% expressing that the sector was too male-dominated. 

“There are strong opportunities for career profession within engineering, but perceptions need to change,” continues Ms Gardner.

“Logistics UK is doing its part by working with government and industry through its Generation Logistics campaign to raise awareness of the opportunities available.” 

The forthcoming retirement of a fifth of the existing engineering workforce over the next five years and the difficulties in filling 59,000 engineering roles per year are contributory factors towards shortfall figure.  

According to Logistics UK’s Skills Review – released earlier this month – there is great interest across industry to take on apprentices.

However, over the past five years only 4% of levy-paying employer accounts were able to fully utilise the funds available to them.  

“Logistics UK is calling for reform to the apprenticeship system to enable businesses to take on more apprentices to help fill some of the workforce shortages; restrictions within the current system are making it difficult – and for some, impossible – for businesses to access the available funding,” concludes Garner.  

To view a copy of Logistics UK’s Skills Review, please visit: www.logistics.org.uk/research-hub/reports/logistics-skills-review   

Published On: 31/08/2023 16:00:00


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