• POLICY AND INTELLIGENCE ... Work with us in our drive to make the engineering and advanced manufacturing sectors a UK priority
  • CAREERS PATHWAYS ... Picture Yourself Here: explore the opportunities in the UK's most advanced sectors from Apprenticeships to professional development
  • STANDARDS, QUALIFICATIONS AND FRAMEWORKS ... Your one stop shop for essential resources and information for delivering engineering, science and technology skills
  • SKILLS SOLUTIONS ... Maximise your people, skills and productivity: how Semta can help
  • SEMTA APPRENTICESHIP SERVICE ... A one-stop employer solution for recruiting, developing and mentoring talented apprentices


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Sector facts and figures

Semta is responsible for engineering skills for the future of the UK’s most advanced sectors. Led by employers, our job is to transform the skills and productivity of the people who power our engineering, science and manufacturing technologies sectors, enabling UK industry to compete on the global stage.

Semta is responsible for 145,800 companies and 1.66 million-strong workforce that make up UK advanced manufacturing and engineering which includes aerospace, automotive, composites, electrical, electronics, marine, mechanical, metals renewables, rail and space sectors.

Total UK Manufacturing

In 2010 UK ranked as 9th in global manufacturing output 1

In 2009 manufacturing was UK's 3rd largest sector, after business services and the wholesale/retail sector 2

In 2011 manufacturing valued at 46% (£225 billion) of all UK exports 6

In 2011 manufacturing generated £154 billion (GVA) (16% of the UK economy) 6

Manufacturing has accounted for 20% of growth since recession ended in 2009 7

In 2011 72% of UK R&D was carried out by the manufacturing sector 5

In 2012 manufacturing employed some 2.9 million people (9.8% of total UK employment) 4


UK Sector Statistics – Semta footprint

Semta's sector workforce of 1.66 million 9

£321 billion total turnover in 2011 (9% of total of all sectors turnover) 12

£64,600 was the average GVA per employee (employees in our sector produce an average of £189,400 in turnover a year) 12

Of the 145,800 sector companies Semta is responsible for 83% have less than 10 employees 8

Just over half of workforce are employed in direct technical roles such as engineers, scientists and technicians 10

5% of Semta's sector workforce is from an ethnic minority (8% for all sectors) 9

7% of Semta's sector workforce is aged 16-24 compared to 11% for all sectors 10

12% of Semta's sector workforce is aged 60 plus compared to 10% for all sectors 10

14% of Semta's workforce has some form of disability (16% for all sectors) 10

20% of Semta's sector workforce is female compared to 49% for all sectors 10

Out of 34,000 approx. vacancies in 2011, a third of these were hard-to-fill vacancies 11 

Engineering companies are projected to need 182,000 people with engineering skills each year to 2022 13

15% of Semta's sector companies have skills gaps 11

Gaps mainly exist in technical, practical or job specific skills plus problem solving, team working, oral communications and management skills 11

363,000 of current technical workforce are qualified below world-class standards 10


England only sector statistics

£236 billion total turnover 12

108,000 companies 9 with a workforce of 1.41 million 10

£58,000 GVA per employee, much higher than £34,400 for all sectors 12

36% of SMEs mainly sell their products overseas 11

7% of Semta's sector workforce is aged 16-24 compared to 10% for all sectors 10

12% of Semta's sector workforce is aged 60 plus compared to 10% for all sectors 10

21% of Semta's sector workforce is female compared to 48% for all sectors 10

18% of engineering employers have or offer apprentices 14


Quick glance

Semta's footprint UK AME Sector England AME sector UK all sectors England all sectors
Aged 16 - 24 7% 7% 11% 10%
Aged 60 + 12% 12% 10% 10%
Average GVA £59,800 £58,000 £37,900 £34,400
Total companies 128,000 108,000 2.6 million 2.1million
Total turnover £309 million £263 billion £3,322 billion £2,890 billion
Workforce 1.66 million 1.41 million 28.5 million 24.1 million
Workforce - female 20% 21% 49% 48%








Higher level skills

The proportion of employees in higher-skilled occupations (managers, professionals and technicians) is51% for Semta’s sectors (43% for all sectors) 10

174,000 technical managers, professionals and technicians need to be upskilled to S/NVQ L4 (or equivalent)

Only 15% of SMEs in Semta’s sectors recruited a graduate in 2011 compared to 19% for all sectors 10


31,070 starts in 2011/12 on Semta frameworks (up 39% on previous year)



1 International comparisons of manufacturing output - Commons Library Standard Note
2 Manufacturing in the UK an economic analysis of the sector
3 Annual Business Survey, 2011Provisional Results
4 ONS: EMP13: All in employment by industry sector Aug 2012
5 Business Enterprise Research and Development, 2011
6 House of Commons manufacturing brief July 2012 SN/EP/1942
7 EEF FactCard 2012
8 Interdepartmental Business Register (IDBR) 2013
9 Business Register and Employment Survey (BRES) 2011
10 Labour force Survey (LFS) 2011
11 Employer Skills Survey (ESS) 2011
12 Annual Business Survey (ABS) 2011
13 The State of Engineering 2016, Engineering UK 2016
14 National Employer Skills Survey (NESS) 2009