Francis O' Toole Author – Careers Ireland

Students' embarking on their career journey – Is Féidir linn

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Is Engineering right for me?

Posted by Francis O' Toole on April 30, 2012

Video: Is Engineering right for me?

Key points for selected engineering occupations

There were 24,300 persons employed in the selected engineering occupations, accounting for approximately 1.3% of Ireland‘s workforce
More than three quarters of employment was in industry (manufacture of computers & electronics, pharmaceuticals and machinery & equipment), professional, scientific and technical activities, and ICT
Over 90% of employment was at professional level (engineers); the remainder was at technician level
While employment contracted by 1.2% on average annually over the period 2005-2010, employment change turned positive between 2009 and 2010 (0.6%); this growth was driven primarily by a 17.5% increase in the employment of design and development engineers in 2010 (a net increase of 1,400 jobs); in almost all other engineering occupations, employment contracted over the period 2009-2010
At 7%, the share of older workers was less than half the national average of 15%; nonetheless, the age profile of employment in these occupations has, on average, shifted further towards older age cohorts: in many occupations (except planning and QC engineers), the share of younger workers halved between 2009 and 2010
The vast majority of those in engineering occupations were highly skilled: at least 80% at professional level and almost 70% at technician level were third level graduates
At an average of 89%, employment in almost all engineering occupations was predominantly male; the employment composition of planning and quality control engineers was almost gender balanced where males only slightly outnumbered females (55% male vs. 45% female)
At 7%, the unemployment rate for engineers was half the national average (14.1%).

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