With a substantial return to the office at companies across the UK this year, engineering and science sector recruitment has continued apace. There are a significant number of roles available for strong tech sector candidates.
As always software engineering is a major contributor here, but increasingly we’ve seen a return toward normal levels of demand across electronics, mechanical engineering and the applied sciences now that facilities are returning to full use.
Graduates level positions have seen a good number of skilled applicants, given both recent and forthcoming graduates and those whose search was inadvertently put on hold by the pandemic. There remains a high demand for senior engineers, given substantially fewer than typical numbers of candidates being seen by companies at this level.
The groundwork laid for remote interviewing during lockdowns has paid dividends and has fed into updated hiring processes, now forming a key part of those whilst companies also take advantage of face to face meetings at later stages. Both companies and candidates seem to welcome the advantages here.
There remains significant interest in hybrid working, and positive news for candidates is the large number of companies offering some level of hybrid working options. There is still more candidate demand for remote working than positions which can offer it, hence candidates looking more at hybrid than fully remote options have a greater variety of choice.
Companies have continued to step up salaries and benefits during this period. It is an excellent time for senior engineers – particularly in in-demand fields such as cloud software – to consider their options during potentially the peak of demand.
That said, we have also had feedback from clients that some expectations they’re hearing from other sources are a little optimistic to say the least. This may in part be attributed to recruitment sector optimism. At ECM we strive for a balanced and realistic view and are happy to advise candidates and clients on remuneration.
It remains to be seen what the UK situation will be in winter of 2022 – whether we’ll see a return to some measures to control the pandemic, or whether this is now behind us – but based on observations to date we expect substantial activity regardless. It's an ideal time now for candidates looking to secure a new role to take steps, to work with future colleagues over the summer and then be well and securely set up for any remote working during the winter months.