Engineering health and safety improvements help recruit more females
The Women’s Engineering Society (WES) has said that more engineering companies are adapting their health and safety equipment and facilities for women to encourage more females to become engineers.
Only 12.37% of all engineers are women. Though this percentage is growing, the Guardian says:
“The UK has the lowest percentage of female engineering professionals in Europe.”
The WES notes that, for more women to become engineers, workplaces need to be more women-friendly. Improvements include PPE (personal protective equipment) clothing that is adapted to fit women, with high-waisted trousers and tops suitable for a woman’s figure. Many companies are increasing the number of women’s toilets and other facilities for women. These changes make the workplace more comfortable for female workers and help retain women engineers.
There are initiatives in place to encourage more women to train in engineering. The Women in Engineering Week is aimed at schools and teachers for Years 9, 10, 11 and includes visits to engineering workplaces to experience an engineering work environment. Women in Construction, meanwhile, supports women who want to work in the construction industry and helps contractors recruit more women.
Some engineering sectors attract more women than others, and these include environmental engineering and design.
Speaking to PESmedia.com, a 25-year-old engineer known as Holly said that the imbalance between the number of men and women engineers puts women off entering the profession. She hopes that:
“Once there is a critical mass of women in the workplace, more would join and, critically, stay.”