International Relocation Trends in Engineering

The engineering sector has an impressive track record of growth and development. It continues to increase its resilience and potential by embracing digital technologies, outsourcing production and reviewing supply chains.


Research shows a shift from manufacturing and construction (production based) to an emphasis on service-based industries. These include information, communication and professional services.

The last decade has seen the engineering workforce grow by 8.5% with increased diversity regarding ethnicity and gender. However, these groups remain underrepresented compared to other sectors.

The engineering industry groups with the highest employment within the engineering sector are:

  • Manufacturing – 36.2%
  • Construction – 21.8%
  • Information and Communication – 15.1%
  • Professional, Scientific and Technical – 11.7%

The emerging engineering groups are less reliant on a local workforce, impacting the demand for international relocations to support business growth. This is further emphasized by the shortage of skilled workers within the sector. 82% of survey respondents mentioned a tight labour market and an exiting workforce as their company’s top challenges in the next year. (Deloitte research, 2023.)

The research report explains: “To retain top talent, companies should consider a workforce strategy based on two pillars: a purpose-driven organization and a personalized career path … 91% of respondents agree that offering a flexible and agile workforce structure can help E&C [engineering and construction] companies to attract and retain talent.”

How International Relocations Boost Business and Retention

International relocations involving existing employees help to:

  • Project a consistent corporate identity.
  • Demonstrate commitment to employees’ personal development.
  • Provide the international experience often needed for leadership roles.
  • Show that employees are valued as they are trusted to represent the organisation overseas.

These benefits are a great for attracting and retaining talent whilst seizing opportunities quickly. Existing employees understand the company’s culture, processes and plans. They can help the organisation to move quickly and streamline operations within global markets. This is especially important in markets where there is a local shortage of suitably qualified and/or experienced talent.

Engineering Relocation Destinations

The countries providing engineering opportunities are:

  1. Canada
  2. India
  3. China
  4. France
  5. New Zealand

These countries offer exciting potential within civil engineering, infrastructure development, petroleum/chemical engineering, scientific and research-led sectors.

To secure growth within these specialist fields requires effective talent mobility,  ensuring key skills are available within the locations required. This is where global relocation companies can support engineering organisations … by developing efficient workforce mobility solutions with flexible services. These services must adapt to client requirements beforeduring and after arriving in new host countries. 

“Integral to providing successful relocations is the customer service received by clients, plus relocating employees and their families,” says Barrie Gilmour, Director Client Experience at BTR. “It’s so important that everyone involved has an excellent relocation experience. Our team is dedicated to providing a consistently outstanding service, worldwide.”

Do you manage your organisation’s relocation programme?

Would you value an informal discussion without obligation?

Explore the smart, seamless approach to relocations. Talk to the friendly experts at BTR – or to Barrie direct by calling him at +44 (0)7957 625 406. Enjoy an initial discussion without obligation.

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