- Marc RumeauPresident of IESF (Engineers and Scientists of France)
- Maxime Alvesmanager of the engineering practice at Robert Walters
- Albin CantalupoGeneral Delegate of the Society of Engineers of Arts and Crafts
- Lemia Ben RahalIT recruitment consultant for Expectra (Randstad group)
- Lionel CarreHRD of the engineering company Advans group
- Aurelien MoreauTechnical Director Weward
- Thomas Clochondelegate for social affairs, training and sustainable development at Syntec Ingénierie
- Estelle Keravaldirector of the Lannion technology park
- Marie Liesse Bizardengineer and HRD vice-president of IESF and president of the Observatory of Engineers
Good times for engineers
“Engineer hiring levels are back to 2019 levels”, enthuses Marc Rumeau, the president of IESF (Engineers and scientists of France), who presented on September 14, the 2022 edition of the study devoted to their integration and their salary *. For this corporation, the situation is rather buoyant and the fear of losing one’s job barely exceeds 6%, “a historically low level”.
In this 3rd quarter of 2022, for engineers, it’s party time in the village. Whether we turn to recruitment firms, employers, trainers or the IESF, the recruitment of engineers, these pampered children of the Republic, is at its highest. ” Their unemployment rate (3.3%) is well below the overall national level of around 8%, which is explained by reactivated professional integration, with pre-Covid conditions,” details the IESF.
Wages up slightly for 2021 but expanding strongly in 2022
The population of engineers is estimated at 1,191,000 at the end of 2021, an increase of almost 3% in one year. The median age is 41 for all engineers and 38 for working people (39 for men, 35 for women).
33rd IESF study, 2022 edition.
A rise in median salaries that reflects the shortage of engineers in France
In 2022, the median salary of an engineer (50% earn more, 50% earn less) reaches 60,000 euros (compared to 58,900 in 2021) for starting salaries of 36,000 euros in 2022 compared to 35,000 in 2021. With a major explanation: France graduates 44,780 engineers per year (2021 figure) for needs estimated at a minimum of 55,000.
“Recruitment difficulties concern employers, not engineerssummarizes Albin Cantalupo, general delegate of the Society of Engineers of Arts and Crafts, one of the large alumni associations with 35,000 members for 62,000 alumni. The market recovered very quickly. This surprised everyone. In 2021, we had planned to strengthen our hiring assistance systems for our alumni. We didn’t need it in 2022 as everything is going well for the engineers. Employers who can’t find the right fit now even come to meet with us so that we can promote their businesses to our members”.
An industrial director with 25 years of experience poached by a start-up for 120,000 eurosMaxime Alves
“Between 2021 and 2022, our team has grown from 3 to 5 consultants dedicated to hiring engineersillustrates Maxime Alves, manager of the engineering practice at Robert Walters. Today, when I have one or two relevant candidates to offer to my clients, I’m happy. We had 3 to 5 at the start of 2021. This generates salary increases that I estimate between 5 and 10% in one year. With functions that recruit more than others, such as project managersthem energy companies in renewables or the industrialization of processes. Everyone is concerned. An industrial director hired by a hydrogen start-up was recently offered a 120,000 euros gross per year package with 25 years of professional experience. An engineer specializing in metallurgy has just landed a job at 50,000 euros gross per year while the Auvergne employer had budgeted 40,000”.
Negotiations on extra-financial benefits
For Lémia Ben Rahal, IT recruitment consultant for Expectra (Randstad group), the recruitment market is so buoyant in 2022 that the design and development engineers are now setting their conditions. Some manage to obtain higher packages of 20% compared to last year.
Young candidates no longer hesitate to demand 60,000 euros gross per year, she says. This is the case of this candidate, computer engineer, two years of experience, 24 years old, who refused a package of 50,000 euros gross per year. The employer, a software publisher, had to offer 50,000 euros fixed but also 5,000 euros variable and an incentive/participation equivalent to 5,000 euros. In addition, the employer financed access to a gym up to 50% and granted 3 days of telework which have become a sine qua non condition for recruitment… A year ago, he would have been paid 50,000 euros gross per year and that’s it.
Lémia Ben Rahal, IT recruitment consultant for Expectra (Randstad group)
New engineers driven out in 2022
“We hired 264 engineers in 2021 for almost as many in anticipation for 2022, continues Lionel Carré, HR Director of the engineering company Advans group (1,100 employees for 100% engineers). The recruitment market for these ielectronics engineers, computer developers or mechanical designers tensed over the past two years. We now have to chase them away because few respond to ads. We also had to increase 2022 salaries by 10% for beginners with restaurant tickets at 8.6 euros fully paid for by the employer, reimbursement of public transport of around 70% and the will of us differentiate by improving the quality of life at work by redesigning our offices or the possibility of teleworking 4 days a week”.
See here an in-house testimonial of a job at Advans:
Engineer salaries: which sectors and functions pay the best
In this ocean of good news, one sector still pays a little better than the others.
🟢 IT engineers: they know they are wanted and impose their conditions
IT and digital, in the broad sense, are particularly concerned. In this branch, the hiring salaries of engineers have increased by around ten percent between 2021 and 2022. This is the case, for example, with the emoluments of design and development engineers, data specialists such as data scientists, the strong in cybersecurity, artificial intelligence and other engineers-architects of information systems. This new generation asks a lot and “calculates their salaries according to housing charges (increasing) and withholding tax, specifies a headhunter, bewildered (she earns less than them…). And that without even mentioning inflation. They calculate net, know that these are highly sought-after profiles and prefer to remain freelance if the package does not suit them”.
Thomas Clochon bears witness to the same difficulties. He is delegate for social affairs, training and sustainable development at Syntec Ingénierie, representing 400 companies that employ 90,000 employees in France, from very small businesses with 10 people to the Capgemini-type multinational employing 340,000 worldwide. “Our members are finding it difficult to hire and it is estimated that, just to work on the climate issue, we will need 8,000 more engineers within 5 years”.
Faced with this situation, employers often have to give in tant retirements are numerous, engineers are so rare and so important is it to internalize teams in order to have reliable employees. The sector is buzzing with very high-level companies with more than 20% of employees leaving the ship in front of the salaries of these young people, disgusted at being paid less than them when they have more experience… When we adds that the HR departments also refuse to hire Bac +3 or 4 to train them, we can legitimately consider that the future of IT engineers is ahead of them…
Start-ups also seek to attract
This engineer recruitment market is also boosted by the arrival of numerous start-ups. WeWard is an example in the current competition between employers. This young company is developing a mobile application to promote walking, while having fun, by offering money to its community of walkers. This employer hired 1 computer engineer in 2021 but 10 in 2022.
“To attract our candidates, we highlight our quality of life at work and we have just, for example, offered 48,000 euros gross per year to a young 24-year-old data scientist, a graduate of Centrale Lilledescribes Aurélien Moreau, the technical director. A year ago, he would have been paid 45,000…”.
A job dating by the sea
Outside Ile-de-France, tensions to recruit engineers also exist. Estelle Kéraval, director of the Lannion technology park (300 companies and 320 engineering hires in 2021 in Lannion-Guingamp-Paimpol) is thus offering job dating on September 29-30 at lunchtime to attract cybersecurity specialists, digital or software development. “We offer optimum working conditions with a price per M2 of 1,950 euros compared to 10,177 in Paris, she compares. In addition, most of our employers offer teleworking, a mobility bonus or sustainable mobility packages to attract engineers. All in the middle of nature and by the sea”. For salaries which are also increasing in the regions as the recruitment of engineers has become a sport whose playing field is French with a leveling up on Parisian salaries.
The number of female engineers does not take off for salary differences which are being reduced
This is the only downside: the question of female engineers has not changed much compared to the 2021 survey. The latter are still just as a minority in the cohort of 2021 graduates. or more like in 2011 (26%). It makes…