{Replica} DIW finds complaint about the soon lack of engineers exaggerated: Skill shortage - a statistics fata morgana of the VDI?

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I recently got up Best of HR – Berufebilder.de® on the action of German engineers against their own association, the VDI, pointed out - and that the numbers on a future Skills shortagethat the VDI has been propagating for years, can be refuted. This is confirmed by a new publication by the German Institute for Economic Research (DIW).{Replica} DIW finds complaint about the soon lack of engineers exaggerated: Skill shortage - a statistics fata morgana of the VDI? {Replica} DIW finds complaint about the soon lack of engineers exaggerated: Skill shortage - a statistics fata morgana of the VDI?

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Simone Janson Simone JansonSimone Janson is publisher, German Top20 blogger and Consultant for HR communication.


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Figures of the VDI: Not comprehensible and overdrawn


Just a few weeks ago Willi Fuchs, director of the VDI, claimed in the SPIEGEL-ONLINE interview, the average age of engineers is 50 to 51 years; therefore there is a wave of retirement and thus a large need for replacement. In addition, the association had vigorously rejected criticism of its numbers.

Now published Dr. Karl Brenke, labor and economic expert at the DIW, who had already caused a stir at the end of 2010, new figures in which he took a closer look at the arguments of the VDI - and refuted. The numbers of the VDI can not understand Brenke and considers it excessive.

In current Weekly report of the DIW and in one Article On Spiegel Online, he explains that the VDI's alarm not only refers to the open engineering positions at the Federal Employment Agency, but also to the age structure of the engineers.

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How does the VDI come up with its figures?


In your well researched post on ZEIT ONLINE explains editor Tina Groll, how the VDI comes to the shortage of skilled workers - a calculation that Brenke does not consider reputable: "The association bases its calculation on a survey from the year 2009. Accordingly, only every seventh engineering job is reported to the Federal Agency. Therefore, the club multiplies this number by a factor of seven. This number is then compared with the number of engineers registered as unemployed - currently the 18.882 are persons. This is how the VDI comes to the gap of 87.000 specialists. "

The average age is younger than the VDI


And what about the age structure? According to micro census 2008 were in Germany around 750000 engineers active. Her average age was 43,3 years. Less than a third of them were 50 years and older.

"Although engineers enter the labor market relatively late due to their long training period, the average age is no higher than for other academic professions," says DIW expert Brenke.

Early retirement wave? Wrong!


Since there have been no radical policy measures or developments in the labor market for engineers in recent years, Brenke assumes that the age structure of the engineers may at most have shifted slightly.

"I do not think it's realistic that 2008 has grown its average age by seven years to 50 to 51 years," said Brenke.

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This is also supported by the current employment statistics of the Federal Agency for Labor of June 2011.

Replacement of 20 000 engineers


"An annual need of 40000 engineers - just to replace the retirees - is not realistic to deduce from the available numbers," said Brenke, "because then all the employed engineers, who are now 50 years and older, in 5 ½ years in retire. "

DIW Berlin expects about half the replacement demand for engineers for the coming years. "If you calculate fairly, you'll end up with about 20000 people who retire each year for reasons of age," says Brenke.

Future needs can be met by university graduates


As a result of the boom after the financial crisis, the number of engineers has risen overall - among 2008 and 2011 social insurance payers by an average of 1,5 per year. "This growth rate is not low, but not much higher than the average of all employees subject to social security contributions," says Brenke. There she was at 1,1 percent.

"In recent years there has been a veritable run on engineering study places," says the DIW labor market expert. For example, 2010 graduated from 50000 students in an industry-related engineering degree program. "Alone the graduates who are currently leaving the universities can meet the total demand for engineers."

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Wrong numbers as a problem for job starters


Brenke therefore advocates a more realistic consideration of engineering needs in the current decade. "Starting a career can be increasingly difficult for young engineers when there is a graduate glut."

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  1. Wirting

    Oh dear people, withdraw from the VDI. It does not matter what kind of engineer, whether mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, business engineering. or cleaning women. no matter. There is too much of everything in the labor market. Choose the left, guaranteed lobbyists free. At VDI so much the young people are fooled, that's hard to believe. Take some time to contact "Hart but Fair" on the times to the general lack of skilled workers ne broadcast and thus enlighten the public. Again: according to the media, there are no engineers, doctors, computer scientists, nurses, skilled workers and even now craftsmen. So it does not affect alone the Ing. The only shortage of skilled workers Germany has honest politicians, in the sense of the German population (mostly AN) shape politics and not like CDU / FDP completely infiltrated by lobbyists. Lobbying is nothing other than bribery and corruption of political decision-makers, who thus wage war against their own people.

    • Simone Janson

      That was the idea of ​​the initiative "Wir sind VDI":

  2. Simone Janson

    Hello Lisa, thanks for the hint and the interesting link. The topic was discussed in our blog up and down and even founded its own initiative - here's the complete overview:

  3. Pingback: German Institute for Economic Research criticizes Blue Card plans: wage dumping instead of a shortage of skilled workers? | Berufebilder by Simone Janson

  4. Simone Janson

    @MINT_Zukunft the DIW considers the information of the VDI more for a statistical mirage - what do you think?

  5. Someone

    As a countermeasure, one could invent other flaws: the politician's and the entrepreneur's shortcomings.

    • Simone Janson

      funny idea :-) That could be passed on to Wir-sind-VDI ...

  6. damaged

    Granted nothing new, but Spiegel reports again - ping and pong depending on whether the employer or employee-friendly side of the article writes - about the lack of skilled workers.

    And once again, with Jux numbers, both in terms of supply and demand for engineers as well as the alleged damage to the poor German economy.

    Actually, I wanted to use force expressions against Mr. Fuchs, but I do not mind with Simone's blog.

    My usual reference to engineering service providers and outsourcing of engineers from companies in cheap service providers I save (a bit) ...

    • Marco

      I've heard that the situation for engineers is to improve significantly if one anonymously in Internet forums and blogs moans around.


      • Simone Janson

        Well, the injured party is unfortunately not with the VDI, so that he can not participate in the action "Wir sind VDI". There are still missing the 100 engineers who are ready for a media-effective action.
        I had thought that would be a no brainer, as upset as everyone else is. But it's fine, as Marco says: It's easier on the internet!

        • wir-sind-vdiweb.de

          While it is true that we mainly need members of the VDI, but also all those who question the professional defenses are a great help:

          By spreading * we-are-vdi * ... tell others .. link ... .mailen etc

          Sooner or later the message will bump into more and more VDI members.

          Anyone interested can get in the (anonymous) distribution list under *wir-sind-vdi@web.de*.

      • Jemand

        Of course, but by google you can find these sites and get a local view. This is my beginning.

        • Simone Janson

          Thank you that makes me happy. The more comments and content, the better ranking on Google.

  7. We-are-VDI

    Hi all,

    Where the journey with us-is-vdi will lead us, is not yet foreseeable at the present time - but everything started small, also the VDI.

    Our first goal is to obtain a VDI member survey on the subject of a shortage of skilled workers, for which the VDI has so far literally considered "no cause".
    So we have to build up a little pressure, which is only possible with as many contestants as possible.

    Not to engage, just because the masterplan of our initiative for the next 5 years is not yet established, helps no further. Time will tell !

    Only start and get involved helps: * we-sind-vdi@web.de*

    • Pit

      just yesterday, a report on the "blue card" came in the "Today Journal" and that in this context the income limits were revised downwards. If I remember right from about 44k € on 34k €. This seems to be especially true for the STEM disciplines (math - information technology), the typical natural sciences halt.
      To my additional displeasure, of course, spoke a Scheffler spokesman (the biggest competitor of my employer).
      This increases the likelihood that you may have to measure yourself at the job change with a competitor who requires approximately 20%, 30% or 40% less. Great view.

      The report should be found in the media library of ZDF (Today Journal of the 28.03.2012)

      • damaged

        In fact, I believe that foreigners are not stupid enough to exploit here in Germany in this profession so we Germans do that more with. Before you can rub yourself in the engineering profession you can also grow olives in Greece.
        The engineering profession is also dead without the blue card and the accompanying. I maintain the German industry would like to pay no more engineers in Germany at all. There is only one pretext to shift jobs to MASSIV low salaries.

        • Simone Janson

          However, I believe that too - especially since there are studies, according to which Germany is not the most popular country for qualified professionals.

        • Jemand

          Hello, foreigners usually do not know what they can demand here and are content with foreign habitants, they do not apply, they beg for work. They come partly by the beckoned of what they hear about salaries, but without or with little knowledge of German is negotiating what the salary is difficult (strengt nunmal the employer). Even bad working conditions are rosy for southern Europeans, they do not understand why Germans complain until it's too late. Nothing against immigration, but please do not without transparency and equal treatment. No curls and coeds, but clearing up.

    • Simone Janson

      Congratulations, keep it up!

  8. We-are-VDI

    Yesterday I was at the Annual Members' Meeting of the VDI-District of Westphalia, where I briefly briefed our request and distributed an information sheet (see appendix!), Where our main arguments are briefly summarized.
    There was a fair and open atmosphere, although some of the guests had to digest for the fact that what you had been drunk on the VDI for years was perhaps not at all right.
    I was told to present our concerns in the NRW national association - let's see what happens. If it was not, it was still a good opportunity to win more contestants.
    So I was by no means pelted with tomatoes :-)

    Now my question / request to you:

    If the Annual General Meeting * of your * local VDI district association has not yet taken place: who can go and hand over the information sheet there as well?
    All very easy: Print, sign (who wants to), 50x copy, go and distribute or let go as a stack of paper through the rows.
    If you want to remain anonymous, just go and spread the sheets just before the entrance / exit.

    The dates can be found here: http://www.vdi.de/43465.0.html

    Thank you!

  9. damaged

    For the sake of completeness: today, our FDP / CDU lobbying government has managed to bury the engineering profession definitively, in a way that I would NEVER have thought possible:

    the fact that the income minimum for foreign "skilled workers" of 66k € was reduced anyway and lowered for "shortage occupations" to 45k €. But now it comes. For "heavy" "shortage occupations" such as engineers, the limit was lowered to 34k €. Well meal!

    Reminder: the 66k € were incl. Employer shares, ie corresponded anyway about 45k € real salary of an engineer, which is still lousy but bearable.

    Who can explain to me why you want to lure professionals in shortage jobs with LESS money, who gets from me a cookie. The question is ERNST meant!

  10. damaged

    I have been dealing with the engineering theme for almost 15 years. As I said, I still have to deal with young engineers, interns, graduates and doctoral students. I NEVER leave a doubt about my opinion on engineering.
    At school you did not want me, o-ton: "even if that's true, we want to motivate the young people" ...
    The industry does not want to see the truth spread and the young people want to believe what they want to believe. As is the case with most "old" engineers, who likes to hear that he is not worth anything, even if he already feels it on his own body. Man is capable of suffering and deceives himself, and engineers are now a special "blow".

    So as a "PR expert", what would you do would you be an engineer? In fact, set up a stakeholder? And then? Spread PR messages? Visiting universities?

  11. damaged

    Several independent engineering associations have already been set up. So far in vain. The anti-VDI initiative, as I understand it, only calls (sensibly) to leave the VDI and has no other objectives.

    I have no ambition to unite the engineers so this would be possible at all.
    But I think the basic prerequisite for a "Gegenverein" is a manifesto that, in addition to the goal of the realistic representation of the engineer profession and its bad prospects for the future, also includes further goals and intentions of the engineers, such as training support, job markets etc. Then the commitment also makes sense.

    • Simone Janson

      Hello victim,
      well, if you just do not want to construct anything constructive, then you can just complain - right?

  12. damaged

    Actually, the DIW study is already "older", but somehow it is populated again in a DIW weekly report, or were there new aspects?

    Anyway, the mouthpiece is the employer, the VDI, an embarrassing and useless club.

    I know the initiative against the VDI, but I am only VDE member. I also doubt that the initiative will bring anything. This club would have to attack with a "Gegen" club the engineer. Important is not only that the VDI does not blow out these absolutely wrong figures, but also that the situation of the engineers in Germany, which is increasingly worse, is realistic for young people.

    Realities in the engineering sector are brutal performance pressure, poor pay, unsafe jobs / temporary jobs / service providers, and above all increasing and soon massive unemployment.

    • Simone Janson

      If you want to set up an association of engineers, I like it in the blog.
      Or you may join the anti-VDI initiative.

  13. Monika Paitl

    DIW finds a complaint about the early engineering deficit: expert deficit - a statistical fata-Morgana of the VDI?

  14. Holger Froese

    DIW finds complaint to the early engineering deficiency overprinted: Fachkäftemangel - a statistics-Fata-Morgana de #Business

  15. Liane Wolffgang

    DIW finds complaint to the short-term lack of engineers covered: Shortage of skilled workers - a statistic-Fata-Morgana of the VDI? ...

  16. Simone Janson

    DIW finds a complaint about the early engineering deficit: expert deficit - a statistical fata-Morgana of the VDI?

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