Engineering an Exciting Future for Girls
School Employer Connections have praised the approach taken by E+I Engineering on their initiative to attract more females into the industry. They have outlined that although schools have been forward thinking in their approaches to encouraging females into engineering, there still remains a stereotypical image that portrays engineering as a job for boys.
The Women’s Engineering Society states that women in the UK account for 9% of the engineering workforce. It has also been widely publicised that the UK economy is experiencing a shortfall of engineers, which poses a serious threat to industry and the economy in general.
E+I Engineering in a recent recruitment campaign for Production Operatives had responses from 225 applicants. The company point out that they received only 3 applications from females. They have highlighted that, in their site in the United States, 30% of Production staff are female, whereas in their operation in Burnfoot, only 1% of Production staff are female.
Reports suggest that by 2022 the UK will need 1.82 million new STEM professionals. So what can industry do?
Gareth King, HR Manager, E+I Engineering, said that, “The industry is missing the skills that women can bring, such as problem solving and innovation, key elements in engineering. We must work together as an industry and society to encourage women and girls in pursuing engineering as a career and ensure that women are provided with the opportunity to progress in our workplaces. The face of engineering must change, and companies, education and society must work together to do this. E+I Engineering offer engineering roles and career pathways that are suited to all genders and the Company is committed to proving this. We are keen to change the face of engineering and welcome females into our Company. Over 300 young people have spent time at our site in Burnfoot since January through School Employer Connections programmes and we will continue to support and promote such vital programmes within our catchment area for future staffing requirements.”
Research suggests that females must experience STEM careers and learn from female role models. Lack of female engineers is a world-wide problem, with the UK figures being the lowest in Europe. As it stands, companies must recruit from a talent pool with only 50% of the overall potential talent.
Sources at E+I Engineering say job roles within engineering are suited to both male and female staff and the company is committed to proving this. The company are keen to change the face of engineering and welcome females into the company. Over 300 young people have spent time at the site since January through School Employer Connections programmes.
Owen Crozier, School Employer Connections, said, “E+I Engineering are strong advocates for women in engineering and support our schools with company visits, work experience placements and school talks. At School Employer Connections we are delighted to see such commitment to promoting and creating job roles. Not only will it enhance the workforce of the future, it will strengthen the economy and set an example for other engineering companies globally to follow. It is a positive step on the road to changing the face of engineering.”