Trend: Engineering Professionals Report High Confidence
Overall confidence among U.S. engineers -- including confidence in the strength of the economy and the ability to find a new job -- grew in the third quarter of 2014, according to Randstad Engineering and Harris Poll survey data. More than one-third of engineers said they believed the economy was getting stronger during the quarter, an increase of 5 percentage points from second quarter 2014. On the jobs front, more than half of engineers feel confident in their ability to find a new job, a 5 percentage point improvement from the previous quarter. Nearly 40 percent of engineers believed there were more jobs available, versus about 20 percent during the previous quarter.
Engineering firms may need to focus more on employee recruitment and retention amid a strong job market for the engineering industry.
U.S. corporate profits, an indicator of corporate demand for professional services, fell 0.3 percent in the second quarter of 2014 compared to the same period in 2013.
U.S. personal income, which drives consumer demand for professional services, rose 4.1 percent in September 2014 compared to the same month in 2013.
Total U.S. revenue for professional, scientific, and technical services rose 3.7 percent in the second quarter of 2014 compared to the previous year.
Firms in this industry provide accounting, advertising and marketing, architectural, consulting, engineering, IT, legal, and scientific research services.
Major firms include U.S.-based Bechtel; Computer Sciences Corporation; IBM; Jacobs Engineering Group; Omnicom; PricewaterhouseCoopers; Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom; as well as Accenture (domiciled in Ireland); Capgemini (France); and WorleyParsons (Australia).
The three largest industry segments are IT services, legal services, and architectural and engineering services, each of which accounts for about 20 percent of revenue.
Most professional work is for corporate customers, although a big portion of legal work is for individuals.
Most professional firms are paid according to the amount of time they devote to clients' projects, typically measured by the hour.
Professional Services Sector
SIC Codes: 7300, 8100, 8700
NAICS Codes: 54