Addressing The Talent Shortage

Lionel Grealou Engineering Innovation Talents 2 minutes

Problem statement

Many business analysts and industry experts have raised looming local shortages of Engineering talent (specifically in the UK and Europe, North and South America), raising the possibility of a diminished capacity for innovation and slower growth, especially  in the automotive, and aerospace & defence industries (Accenture 2011, Manpower 2014, Strategy& 2014, Engineering UK 2015).

More than four out of five employers are struggling to fill open jobs. Global employers report the biggest talent shortages in the skilled trades category; Engineers are second on the list for the third year in a row. Over half of employers reporting a talent shortage say it is having a significant impact on their ability to meet client needs. 

Closing the gap

Keys to address the issue include a blend of various initiatives:

  1. Focusing on internal skill retention and ‘business ready’ development programs to attract (new) Engineers.
  2. Accessing global talents through ‘right-sourcing’ engagements (sourcing the right skills at the right location – where they exits and are available).
  3. Improving existing Engineering processes and creating new ways of working (business transformation): improving efficiency to free up Engineers’ time so that they focus on Value-Add activities and greater throughput, e.g. typical productivitycapabilities and improvements enabled by Product Life-cycle Management (PLM) processes and tools.
  4. Improving ways to access global talents and enable global outsourcing with PLM collaboration and IT remote working solutions, e.g. supply chain collaborative platforms, cloud solutions and Virtual Desktop Infrastructures (VDI).

What are your thoughts?


  • Manpower Group: 2014 Annual Talent Shortage Survey
  • Engineering UK Report 2015
  • Craig E, Thomas R.J, Hou C, Mathur S (2011) No Shortage of Talent: How the Global Market is Producing the STEM Skills Needed for Growth, Accenture Publication
  • Adams J, Beckey S, Roller M (2014) Managing A&D engineering talent: Creating a competitive advantage through the workforce, Strategy& Publication

This post was originally published on LinkedIn on 24 April 2015.

About the Author

Lionel Grealou


Lionel Grealou, a.k.a. Lio, helps original equipment manufacturers transform, develop, and implement their digital transformation strategies—driving organizational change, data continuity and process improvement, managing the lifecycle of things across enterprise platforms, from PDM to PLM, ERP, MES, PIM, CRM, or BIM. Beyond consulting roles, Lio held leadership positions across industries, with both established OEMs and start-ups, covering the extended innovation lifecycle scope, from research and development, to engineering, discrete and process manufacturing, procurement, finance, supply chain, operations, program management, quality, compliance, marketing, etc.

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