I could not help but notice that there is a run on Engineering and Accounting jobs in the market right now. I decided to do a little research to see if I was imagining this and here is what I came up with:
After speaking with employers and examining job descriptions it did not take long to realize that the mad rush to fill accounting positions could be traced back to the high profile accounting scandals at companies such as Enron, WorldCom, and Tyco. In response to these scandals Congress enacted the Sarbanes Oxley Act of 2002, also known as the Public Company Accounting Reform and Investor Protection Act of 2002.
Sarbanes Oxley established 11 new stringent standards for company boards, management, as well as public accounting firms. Rulings on requirements of Sarbanes Oxley come from the Securities and Exchange Commission.
As a result of this legislation as well as an overall climate of corporate regulation companies are placing a premium on finding quality accounting candidates, specifically those candidates that have experience with Sarbanes Oxley compliance.
The generous supply of Engineering jobs on the market can be traced back to several different factors. According to the Engineer of 2020: by the National Academy of Engineering the engineering field is and will continue to be driven by breakthrough technologies specifically Biotechnology, Nanotechnology, Materials Science and Photonics, Information and Communications Technology, Information Management, and Logistics.
In this time of innovation in this country where technological advances occur so rapidly the need for quality engineers is similar. Competitive advantages are won or lost on the ability to drive innovation.
Another important factor to consider is the pool of candidates available for high level engineering jobs in this country. According to the National Science Board, International students account for nearly half the US doctors awarded in engineering and computer science. In addition, more than 35% of US engineering and computer science university faculty are foreign-born.
According to the Journal of Engineering Education many nations are seeking to reap the benefits of advanced education, including strong positive effects on GDP growth. They are not only trying to attract international students to their countries they are trying to lure top talent as well. Those countries like China and India that used to feed American schools with engineering students are now making a concerted effort to keep those students home or to return home after getting their education. This new competition may be a factor on the pool of quality candidates for engineering jobs in this country.
One thing is for sure, if I was advising a young person today I would say get that accounting degree or that engineering degree and better yet get an advanced degree. You will be in high demand.