New Research on Engineering Careers Shows a Profession in Flux

Students and recent grads are skeptical about job prospects in the current recession—while working engineers see compensation stalling

Nov 02, 2011, 11:16 ET from Penton Media Inc.

NEW YORK, Nov. 2, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Electronic Design, a global publication providing its readers with leading-edge technological advances, announced today the release of its latest study.  The research was designed to reveal the challenges this industry is facing —both professionally and financially—by the lingering recession.  Electronic Design is a Penton Media publication.

"The salary survey, conducted each year by Electronic Design, provides key insights into the financial aspects of the electronic engineering profession as well as trends from year to year," said Joe Desposito, editor-in-chief, Electronic Design magazine.  "This year we took a slightly different approach to the survey by analyzing the career life cycle of the engineer, and we uncovered impactful data throughout all stages of an electronic design engineer's career."

More than 8,000 design engineers, engineering students and recent engineering grads were surveyed.  Findings include:

  • Barely 60% of the undergrads surveyed believe a career path in engineering and the potential for salary advancement is as promising now as it was when they first started pursuing their engineering education.
  • A slight majority (58%) of recent graduates surveyed said they'd landed a job, with the rest either still looking for work or finishing up an internship.
  • About a third said they'd waited until they had achieved their master's or doctorate before heading off to work.  

Despite being members of a well-paying profession, engineers are taking control of their futures and designing their own retirement strategies. In fact, more than two-thirds of those surveyed do not have a financial advisor helping them plan their retirement—even though the retirement goal of the average engineer is more than $1.4 million. "I find that depending on myself is the best way," said one respondent. "I have to try and save as much as I can now to make sure my future is secure. All of the different financial products are nice, but who really can take those kinds of risks?"

Additional topics of the study can be found online at  

About Electronic Design

Electronic Design, a Penton Media publication, provides leading-edge technical information to electronics engineers and engineering managers around the world.  As a leading, independent, business-to-business media company, Penton knows business and how to create and disseminate vital content that moves markets.  Penton is where professionals turn to gain the critical insight, expert analysis and relevant connections needed to complete and succeed.  Headquartered in New York City, the privately held company is owned by MidOcean Partners and U.S. Equity Partners II, an investment fund sponsored by Wasserstein & Co., LP, and its co-investors.  For additional information on the company and its businesses, visit

Jill Baldassano
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SOURCE Penton Media Inc.