CHAIR’S REPORT: New Chair calls for improved industry remuneration
In accepting the position of Chair of ACEC for 2001-2002, I made a promise to our industry. I said that I would work to help ACEC educate clients and the general public as to the real value of member ...
In accepting the position of Chair of ACEC for 2001-2002, I made a promise to our industry. I said that I would work to help ACEC educate clients and the general public as to the real value of member firms’ contribution to society and the economy, and to the need to raise industry remuneration significantly. I need your help to accomplish this ambitious objective.
The voice of engineering needs to be heard loud and clear in today’s Canada if the health and safety of our communities and our environment are to be protected. Too often and for too long the professional advice of engineers has been taken for granted, undervalued or not taken at all. The hard work of our forefathers who helped to build the social and economic fabric of this great country is in jeopardy if today’s industry is unable to show the relevance and the value of our professional services to those who rely on our expertise the most — our clients and the general public.
Our profession’s value is literally embedded in Canada’s public infrastructure and therefore in the day-to-day lives of all Canadians, and over time that value has become largely taken for granted. In many cases, engineering services are becoming a commodity. Symptomatic of this reality is a decline in industry salaries and remuneration and a resulting increase in the difficulty of attracting and retaining the best and the brightest to our profession. If left unchallenged this trend will result in second rate engineering and undermine the public’s faith in our professional services. Ultimately, this will be bad news for the health, safety and economic wellbeing of Canadians, as well as for our shared environment.
Heavy competition in Canada and the United States for qualified personnel, the below-average salaries of consulting engineers and the declining enrolment in civil engineering studies are concrete and worrying examples of an industry that needs to tell its story. That is what I hope to do this year with your help.
ANDREW STEEVES, P.ENG., CHAIR
ASSOCIATION OF CONSULTING ENGINEERS OF CANADA