Australia’s peak engineering body has continued its reign as the most popular professional association for graduates.
Each year the Australian Association of Graduate Employers (AAGE) recognises organisations, universities and industry bodies doing their most to help graduates succeed in the workplace.
For the second year in a row, Engineers Australia claimed the title of Most Popular Professional Association at the 2019 AAGE Graduate Recruitment Industry Awards (AGRIAs).
Professional associations are an important resource for young engineers, providing them with opportunities to build skills, forge networks and become part of the wider professional community.
Finalists are determined from responses to the AAGE’s annual AGRIAs Survey, with asks employers within the AAGE network to vote for the professional association that has provided the best quality services over the past 12 months.
Samantha Zdjelar, National Manager – Membership Growth, Engineers Australia, said it was an honour to be recognised directly by graduate employers in this way.
“Engineers Australia is passionate about supporting graduate employers to recruit, retain and develop their next generation of engineering leaders,” Zdjelar said.
“Over the past 12 months we have introduced new products and services and evolved our existing programs to ensure that we are meeting the needs of graduate employers in a changing market.”
She highlighted some initiatives launched by Engineers Australia as examples of how the association continues to provide value to engineering graduates and their employers.
The association hosts a jobs board tailored to the engineering profession so both employers can find the right candidates and young engineers have a place to look for relevant roles. Another is industry engagement plans aimed at supporting employers and graduates from Day 1.
“We have introduced customised 12 month in-house graduate engagement plans with industry, to support employers to get their graduates ‘Chartered started’,” Zdjelar said.
“We hold information sessions and one-to-one career development discussions with staff in their offices to add further value to membership and assist employers in growing and retaining their young engineers. Topics include Chartered, membership, breaking down the competencies and how to build professional networks.”
Finally, she pointed to the association’s efforts to make sure Engineers Australia is offering events that are tailored to the wants and needs of graduates. This includes Elevation (where employers connect with third and final year students looking for their dream job), Welcome to the Profession networking nights, and the Festival of Fresh Ideas.
“This award means so much to the many teams at Engineers Australia who are striving to support and grow the careers of our young engineers,” Zdjelar added.
The place to be
On the whole, the engineering profession is a good place to be a graduate. Recent studies show engineering graduates have some of the most favourable employment outcomes of any profession: 80 per cent are in full-time roles within four months of graduation, and that number rises to 95 per cent three years on from graduation, according to the Graduate Outcomes Survey report.
That same research found engineering graduates are also among the five highest paid, with a median starting salary of $65,000.
Annual rankings of the top 75 graduate employers as voted by grads shows young engineers are happy with their choice of profession. Engineering employers from a variety of categories dominated the 2019 list.