ISO 9001 & UKAS Registered, Electron Beam Services in the United Kingdom ISO 9001 & UKAS Registered, Electron Beam Services in the United Kingdom

There has long been concern in the engineering sector that we don’t have enough people entering the profession, and it’s a problem that many believe will only get worse as we move towards Brexit.

The Institution of Mechanical Engineers revealed that nearly half of engineers believe Brexit will widen the skills gap.

What’s more, 73 per cent feel the government needs to do more to clarify the effects of leaving the EU on the engineering sector.

Engineering UK figures previously put the shortfall at 69,000 engineers, but there are now concerns that this figure could be even higher if it becomes more difficult to recruit from the EU.

The engineers surveyed were also asked about what challenges they feel their industry can help solve in the coming 10 years. 78 per cent stated renewable alternatives to plastic, while two-thirds stated that work on urban infrastructure to reduce carbon emissions would come to fruition in this time.

Helping alleviate the global water crisis and food shortages were other areas cited where engineering could play a pivotal role.

Tanya Spencer, who organised the recent Institution of Engineering & Technology’s Achievement and Innovation Awards, commented: “In a challenging climate, our engineering workforce is doing all they can to continue to progress and build new innovations and solutions to today’s major issues.”

The skills crisis may mean more firms seek specialist engineering assistance, such as with the likes of electron beam welding.

One area the UK is aiming to be at the forefront of is electric aircraft. Last month Heathrow Airport offered to give the first electric-hybrid aircraft to operate out of the transport hub free landing fees for a year.