What we need is not more engineers but more human resource (HR) personnel who can create good HR policies for engineers ("Shrinking pool of engineers poses national risk"; July12).
While offering competitive pay is indeed an important part of the solution, this ignores the problem of organisations giving their engineers work that is uninspiring and purposeless to the worker.
For example, in a report on Feb 10 ("Where have all the engineers gone?"), a former engineer said he gave up his engineering job of designing speaker circuits for radios because it was simply not what he wanted to do with his engineering abilities.
Such disengagement and disenchantment can be attributed to the way labour is divided in the workplace. Each worker is expected to specialise in one minute area of the production process. Since the impact of the work is extremely minor, workers very easily lose interest in their work, especially if their skills actually permit them to realise bigger projects.
If organisations wish to retain engineers, one of the most urgent things they must do is improve the quality of the work each engineer gets on a day-to-day basis.
Lim Zi Kun (Ms)