Earlier this month, we posted a summary of our annual salary survey, and it contained some promising news. Salaries are up for the third year in a row, and job satisfaction remains high, but 41 percent of those surveyed strongly agree that they are underpaid and overworked. Only 27 percent say they are paid fairly and have the appropriate workload; the rest remain neutral.
That is a pretty low percentage of people who think they are being fairly paid. Then again, in today's economy most people are grateful that they have a job to go to. Only 7 percent say that they are not at all concerned with the current economic climate, while 20 percent are extremely or very concerned. It is tough out there, and that is why more than half of the engineers surveyed are concerned with their job security. Those concerned about job security say the top factors that affect their feelings are their company, the economy, and politics.
It is interesting to note that 74 percent of engineers surveyed strongly agree that they are appreciated and respected, and only 9 percent say they are not. Almost just as many people agreed that the role of an engineer is a respected position. Eighty-four percent gave engineering the ultimate seal of approval -- willingness to recommend the profession to their child.
Download the full survey, sponsored by Aerotek, here.
Are you being paid fairly? Tell us in the comments section below.
Click on the image below to learn more details about our survey.
I think you are correctin that assesment, but would add many more job titles. Tops on the list is politicians and the majority of their respective staffs. Next is stock traders and various other money managers. The last I will touch on, I am not sure of their titles, but those that are able to take a perfectly functional text book and add enough pictures, glossy paper, fancy covers and other fro fro to jack the price up over $100 each.
Also let us not forget members of government bureaucracies for whom their sole job seems to be perpetuating the government bureaucracy. That includes many nonfunctional layers in various schools and school districts.
you wrote "The problem is made worse by all of those in other fields who get much greater compensation while delivering nothing that benefits society in any way at all. That is the part that is so horribly unfair."
You could have condensed that to one word - "Lawyers". There you go, I have called the child by his name.
I don't even look at the salarysurvey things any more because they are so depressing. Either the engineers working in and around the auto companies are all underpaid, or a whole lot of them everywhere else are lying a lot. Or possibly they have the same agents as some athletes have.
My guess is that most good engineers are not compensated fairly in relation to the value that they deliver, while some of the less skilled ones wind up being way overpaid for the minimal value that they deliver.
The problem is made worse by all of those in other fields who get much greater compensation while delivering nothing that benefits society in any way at all. That is the part that is so horribly unfair.
Excellent post Lauren. I can certainly understand why a large percentage of engineers feel very uncomfortable about job security. I retired in 2005 from a company that demanded at least 30% of purchased components and assemblies come from LCCs (low cost countries). Of course this means China, India, Mexico, etc. This takes away from engineering jobs at home. From what I have read, this trend is reversing and more companies see benefits for returning design and manufacturing to our shores. This salary survey is one of the best things DN does and it's always great to know the averages relative to our profession. I feel most engineers chose based upon interest and not necessarily salary. I think this is definitely borne out by this survey. I've been an engineer for over 50 years and certainly feel I made the proper choice although I'm far from wealthy.
GTOlover, the $15K difference between B.S.-level engineers and PhD-level engineers is why many bright young engineers don't go on for PhDs. Getting a PhD requires years of salary loss, unless you do it at night and take many years to finish.
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