Senior British Aerospace managers are investigating reports of discontent within its military aerospace and aerostructures division over the use of the engineer title in non-engineering jobs.
Complaints were sparked by a job evaluation exercise which engineers claim caused an increase in the number of non-technical `procurement engineers’, mainly administrative `logistics engineers’ and `business support engineers’ (News, 26 March).
A senior BAe engineering manager said the company was trying to establish the extent of the concern, but added: `Misuse of the title is a general problem in the UK.’
The row comes as BAe tries to polish up engineering’s image through a two-year `engineering excellence’ campaign to promote its high-tech capability and counter the traditional public image of engineering.
The Institution of Electrical Engineers failed to persuade BT to stop calling telephone technicians engineers when BT deputy chief executive Alan Rudge was institution president.
Professor Philip Secker, IEE acting secretary and chief executive, said: `The word engineer has been in the general vocabulary since the Industrial Revolution; nothing we say will alter that.’