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The Randstad engineering employee confidence index for the U.S. rose to a reading of 57.8 in the fourth quarter of 2012, its first increase in the past three quarters. The reading increased 3.4 percent compared to a reading of 54.4 in the third quarter. The index measures workers’ confidence in their personal employment situation and optimism in the economic environment.
Although a growing number of engineering professionals (34 percent in the fourth quarter compared to 29 percent in the third quarter) believe the economy is getting stronger, the number of engineers who believe more jobs are available fell four percentage points to 23 percent in the fourth quarter. However, 59 percent of engineers feel confident in their ability to find a new job, up from 53 percent in the prior quarter.
“A persistent area of concern for engineers is in the availability of jobs, which declined further in our index this quarter,” said Randstad Engineering President Richard Zambacca. “However, as is the case with many other fields, certain positions within the industry are estimated to grow aggressively in the long and short-term. Industrial engineers and electrical/hardware engineers have demonstrated steady growth in the past year.”
The report is based on an online survey conducted by Harris Interactive on behalf of Randstad. It surveyed 4,738 employed U.S. adults.