Have Australian engineers become second class citizens? Does anyone care?
10-01-2017 3 Comment

Summary: Our local engineers have no jobs in what is a changed employment dynamic. Yet overseas workers are continually being brought in as if nothing has changed.....


Australian engineering graduates and Australian engineers in general seem to be losing jobs to individuals migrating from other countries, despite the dire situation engineers in industries like oil & gas, mining, manufacturing and some parts of the electricity generation, transmission and distribution industries face.

Related: Engineers imported from overseas as Australians struggle to find jobs

As per a recent report in 2015/2016, a record number of skilled engineers migrated to Australia leaving job vacancies at an all-time low.

The problem with this is that Australian engineering graduates and engineers in general are left searching for jobs that don’t exist.

Is this fair?

We all know that this isn’t the first time that government officials have gone looking elsewhere for employees to fill local job vacancies.

After reviewing the skilled occupations list, Engineers Australia expects another skills shortage in Engineering stating “Engineering has a highly cyclical employment market and long-term migration is a method of moderating this boom/bust cycle”. This said by the chief executive Stephen Durkin of EA.

Incidentally Engineers Australia made $8.8 million last financial year from their skills migration assessment.

The government for immigration and border protection states that the government is only trying to strengthen the skilled migration program and that overseas workers would only supplement Australian workers not otherwise available in hard to find skill sets.  This being said by Mr. Dutton adding that “Australian workers will have priority”.

But with so many engineers with up to fifteen years’ experience languishing in places like Western Australia, Queensland, South Australia and Tasmania finding it really difficult to find jobs - is this migration program for engineers currently necessary?

How do you feel about the shortage of jobs?

Should skilled engineers be removed from the migration list?  What would you like to see done?

Source : Brian Mook, Blogger, WattElectricalNews, 10/01/17

  • MyPassion

    27 Jan, 2017

    I am an Australian engineer, a citizen from Perth, who has worked ex-pat for many years. Mainly in mining. I have been trying for some time to find work back in Australia, but with no success. Precisely as your article describes.
  • MyPassion

    03 Jan, 2018

    Just a quick comment on the run down of oil and gas jobs in Canada - you guys are not alone in having well qualified graduate engineers having difficulty finding work. The environment crowd and the permitting process takes a huge amount of effort to get things working.....Many internationals like Shell, BP, Petronas, have pulled out, leaving a lot of projects cancelled or deferred indefinitely. So it's not a real happy story up in Canada either...30% of the office space in downtown Calgary is empty...yes !! Bob
  • MyPassion

    04 Dec, 2018

    I was in the midst of my graduate program (after completion of Masters in Electrical Engineering) when I was laid off with others when the guillotine came down on the mining boom. I worked voluntarily for a charity organisation involved in equipments for disabled for one year to retain and enhance my skills whilst searching for a job. The futility of the search Australiawide and the consequential financial plight forced me to leave the ciuntry. I have been working in London for the last four and half years on diverse project types that include building services, data centres, European Space program based at Imperial College and presently utilities. My endeavours to seek a position for the last eighteen months in a fervent hope to return home to my family in Perth is proving to be a chimera. All this news about thousands of well paid jobs due to renewed mining boom is nothing short of propaganda. This may mislead some towards engineering career path. How irresponsible?

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