23rd June 2022 marks International Women in Engineering Day, giving women engineers around the world a profile in an under-represented profession. As of June 2021, figures show that 16.5% of engineers are women. It’s an important day to recognise those paving the way and encourage young women to take up engineering careers.

Why do we need more women in engineering?

There are many answers to this question, but ultimately studies have shown that diverse teams tend to perform better. With different approaches to tasks, various skillsets and ways of thinking, diverse teams can strike a great balance. Men and women often have different strengths, which can create a powerful result when combined.

With quickly developing technology and the 21st century advancing quicker than ever before, we need engineers with a wide range of skills and abilities. There are countless options, fields, and industries available to an engineer. From the built environment which encompasses roads, waterworks, railways and much more, to tackling climate change.

What can be done?

There are a number of organisations promoting the education and development of women or young girls to fulfil their potential and pursue engineering careers.

It’s important to shake the bias that girls can’t be or are not good in science and mathematics. From a young age, we can encourage girls to develop these skills. Such as learning code, carrying out science experiments (safely!) and taking these subjects through to further education.

STEM Women run graduate careers events and promote jobs aimed at university students and recent graduates who identify as women or non-binary, and study a STEM-related subject; science, technology, engineering, or mathematics.

At the start of the year, they published a Whitepaper exploring students’ and graduates’ attitudes towards gender issues prevalent within STEM.

As a society, we should be shining the light on the contributions of women in engineering and encourage female innovators. Films such as Hidden Figures, Engima, Gravity and even Big Hero 6 are a great representation of women in STEM. We should also improve the images used when talking about science and engineering. A quick search online will often show images of men on a construction site and very few women. Imagine getting to a point where you don’t have to specifically search for “women engineer”.

The Women’s Engineering Society is a charitable company founded to support women in engineering. They were the ones who founded International Women in Engineering Day. Their vision is to see an engineering industry that employs the diversity of the society it serves, solving the biggest societal issues of our time. It is their mission to support women in engineering careers to fulfil their potential and support the industry to be inclusive.

We’re Hiring

At Advance TRS, we believe everyone deserves the same opportunities, regardless of age, race, gender, religion or sexual orientation. The diversity of our workforce is an essential part of our success. As such, we are committed to supporting contractors and staff to work in an environment that is free from discrimination and promotes equal opportunities for all.

We are currently recruiting for a number of positions across our Guildford and Port Solent offices. Check out our latest opportunities.

As the importance of closing the skill and pay gaps and bringing more equality to workplaces is being recognised more and more, many businesses adapt the way they recruit in order to attract higher numbers of female staff. Some also offer incentives or make pledges. 

According to a recent article by STEM Women, the number of women working in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) has increased by 216,552 since 2016. This has taken the total number over the 1 million mark for the first time ever and means that in 2019 women made up 24% of the STEM workforce in the UK.

Looking at the data trends between 2009 to 2019 it is estimated that by 2030 there could be more than 29% of women in the STEM workforce. You can read the full article here. 

At Advance TRS, we believe everyone deserves the same opportunities, regardless of age, race, gender, religion or sexual orientation. The diversity of our workforce is an essential part of our success. As such, we are committed to supporting contractors and staff to work in an environment that is free from discrimination and promotes equal opportunities for all. 

We work closely with our clients across the rail, water, property and construction sectors to support them to achieve a more diverse workforce. Search our latest opportunities or contact our consultants for a confidential conversation about your next step on 01483 361061.

Check out our latest opportunities across the built environment.

We have looked into what support different organisations in the built environment offer women already working in or looking to pursue a career in engineering and here is what we have found.

The Women’s Engineering Society

This is a great starting point for anyone. The Women’s Engineering Society (WES) was founded in June 1919 by a small committee drawn from the National Council of Women, which was created during the 1914-18 war to get women into work to release men for the armed forces.

There are numerous resources on the website, from monthly newsletters, a Climate Emergency Group to different (online) events. You can also look for a new role on their job board. 

They cover a wide range of topics and if you can’t find what you are looking for on their website, you can get in touch with them via phone or email.

Women in Rail

As the name suggests, this is more specific to women working in or looking to work in the rail sector. The organisation runs several events throughout the year, including awards ceremonies, and even offers a mentoring programme. The purpose of it is to provide a support platform for women and men in UK rail, champion diverse thinking, exchange ideas and promote diversity in the sector, starting with gender diversity as the core focus.

The programme is also designed to help participants progress in their careers and has received endorsements from several key rail companies. 

To find out more, simply head over to their website.

Women into Construction

A brilliant, not-for-profit organisation, providing bespoke support to women looking to work in construction. By assisting contractors to recruit trained, driven women, they help to reduce skills gaps and create a more gender-equal workforce.

Some of the key businesses in construction are members of Women into Construction, working actively to increase gender diversity within their organisations. You can find their latest advertised roles there or take a look at WiC’s upcoming events. 

Definitely a website worth visiting if you work in the sector or are thinking about joining it.

British Water

British Water has committed to improving gender equality in the water sector with its Women on Water Pledge. This includes increasing the number of women on its non-executive board. British Water has urged the rest of the industry to follow its lead.

As an industry leader, British Water remains committed to supporting businesses and Women on Water will help drive growth through focusing on the productivity, well-being and advancement of those working within organisations’ teams. Read more about Women on Water here.

Women in Recruitment

As a recruitment business, Women in Recruitment is close to our hearts, as it offers firms like our own practical support in attracting, developing and retaining female talent, which helps not only us but also our clients and candidates. 

The organisation gives individuals access to development tools, mentoring and networking opportunities designed to support successful and sustainable careers in recruitment.

We have certainly benefited from being members and feel that it is enabling us to help our clients achieve their goals when it comes to recruiting more female talent across their businesses.

You can find out more about Women in Rail here.

At Advance TRS we are always looking for driven and ambitious individuals to join the team. If this is you and you would like to work for a business that values its employees’ contribution to its success then we would love to hear from you!

To find out more about our current opportunities, visit our careers page, or for a discrete conversation, contact Paul Metcalfe, Advance TRS CEO on 07793 554 413 or email pme@advance-trs.com.