Letters

11/01/2009


Engineering shortage in America?

With reference to the article “ The 10 hardest jobs to fill in America ” in the Consulting-Specifying Engineer July 2009 issue, these labor deficits are blamed on demographic trends and failing skill levels, as well as declining work values. Many companies are looking abroad to meet their employment needs.

 

However, one major factor is being overlooked. Many engineers over ages 45 and 50 are being let go or just not hired. This is truly sad. These engineers have a wealth of experience, knowledge, and capabilities. This is one of the least understood aspects of the engineering shortage.

 

So let's take another look at our hiring practices. They're out there—ready and available.

 

Best regards, Howie Vactor, PE, Midwest Assocs. Cleveland

 

Editor-in-Chief responds

Thank you for your letter, Mr. Vactor. Indeed, ageism is more of a problem among engineers than doctors, lawyers, and accountants. Additionaly, there also is abuse of the H1-B visa program which unnecessarily brings foreign engineers into the U.S., plus the outsourcing of work to engineers overseas. On the one hand, there is (or was, until the economy tanked) a shortage of building systems engineers and the “best and brightest” students looking at becoming engineers. What people may not recognize is how much all of these issues are related. Students are researching long-term job prospects on forums such as LinkedIn, Facebook, blogs, etc. If practicing engineers are not being treated well, at any age, students will turn away. This is what death spirals are made of. There are no simple solutions, but solving tough problems are what engineers are good at. What do you recommend?

 

Michael Ivanovich Editor-in-Chief

 

Letters

Send your letters to Michael Ivanovich, editor-in-chief, Consulting-Specifying Engineer , 2000 Clearwater Drive, Oak Brook, IL 60523, or via e-mail to michael.ivanovich@reedbusiness.com .

 

Letters should be no longer than 200 words, and may be edited for space, style, spelling, and grammar.



No comments
The Top Plant program honors outstanding manufacturing facilities in North America. View the 2015 Top Plant.
The Product of the Year program recognizes products newly released in the manufacturing industries.
The Engineering Leaders Under 40 program identifies and gives recognition to young engineers who...
Strategic outsourcing delivers efficiency; Sleeve bearing clearance; Causes of water hammer; Improve air quality; Maintenance safety; GAMS preview
World-class maintenance: The three keys to success - Deploy people, process and technology; 2016 Lubrication Guide; Why hydraulic systems get hot
Your leaks start here: Take a disciplined approach with your hydraulic system; U.S. presence at Hannover Messe a rousing success
Flexible offshore fire protection; Big Data's impact on operations; Bridging the skills gap; Identifying security risks
The digital oilfield: Utilizing Big Data can yield big savings; Virtualization a real solution; Tracking SIS performance
Getting to the bottom of subsea repairs: Older pipelines need more attention, and operators need a repair strategy; OTC preview; Offshore production difficult - and crucial
Applying network redundancy; Overcoming loop tuning challenges; PID control and networks
Putting COPS into context; Designing medium-voltage electrical systems; Planning and designing resilient, efficient data centers; The nine steps of designing generator fuel systems
Package boilers; Natural gas infrared heating; Thermal treasure; Standby generation; Natural gas supports green efforts

Annual Salary Survey

Before the calendar turned, 2016 already had the makings of a pivotal year for manufacturing, and for the world.

There were the big events for the year, including the United States as Partner Country at Hannover Messe in April and the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago in September. There's also the matter of the U.S. presidential elections in November, which promise to shape policy in manufacturing for years to come.

But the year started with global economic turmoil, as a slowdown in Chinese manufacturing triggered a worldwide stock hiccup that sent values plummeting. The continued plunge in world oil prices has resulted in a slowdown in exploration and, by extension, the manufacture of exploration equipment.

Read more: 2015 Salary Survey

Maintenance and reliability tips and best practices from the maintenance and reliability coaches at Allied Reliability Group.
The One Voice for Manufacturing blog reports on federal public policy issues impacting the manufacturing sector. One Voice is a joint effort by the National Tooling and Machining...
The Society for Maintenance and Reliability Professionals an organization devoted...
Join this ongoing discussion of machine guarding topics, including solutions assessments, regulatory compliance, gap analysis...
IMS Research, recently acquired by IHS Inc., is a leading independent supplier of market research and consultancy to the global electronics industry.
Maintenance is not optional in manufacturing. It’s a profit center, driving productivity and uptime while reducing overall repair costs.
The Lachance on CMMS blog is about current maintenance topics. Blogger Paul Lachance is president and chief technology officer for Smartware Group.
This article collection contains several articles on the vital role that compressed air plays in manufacturing plants.
This article collection contains several articles on the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) and how it is transforming manufacturing.
This article collection contains several articles on strategic maintenance and understanding all the parts of your plant.
click me