Free cookie consent management tool by TermsFeed Blog - Top 10 Career Choices for Workers in Their 20s: Why Engineering Might Be Your Best Bet | Redline Group Recruitment News and Blogs | Redline Group Ltd

Top 10 Career Choices for Workers in Their 20s: Why Engineering Might Be Your Best Bet

three young people looking at a laptop screen

Are you in your teens or twenties and wondering which career path to pursue? Making an informed decision is crucial, especially considering the job market's demands and trends. Let us explore the top ten career choices for workers in their twenties, focusing on why engineering and technology could be the ideal options for you, supported by statistics from reports in the UK.

1. Software Engineer:

According to the Tech Nation Report 2021, the UK's tech sector grew by 10.2% in 2019-2020, outpacing the wider economy. Software engineering is described as the design, development, and testing of software applications to address real-world problems. It follows a structured and disciplined approach, adhering to engineering principles and best practices. Software developers' revenue is expected to climb at a compound annual rate of 3.1% over the five years through 2024-25 to £45.8 billion. With the demand for tech talent soaring, software engineering roles remain highly sought after, offering competitive salaries (£53,000) and abundant opportunities for career growth.

2. Mechanical Engineer:

As of the fourth quarter of 2023, approximately 71,700 mechanical engineers were employed in the United Kingdom, a slight increase from 71,500 in the previous quarter. These professionals work across a range of industries including aerospace, automotive, oil and gas, and consumer products, etc. With an estimated 186,000 job openings in engineering annually, mechanical engineering offers stable employment prospects and the satisfaction of solving complex technical challenges. Indeed reports the average base salary for a mechanical engineer is £39,000.

3. Electrical Engineer:

Electrical engineers design, build, and maintain electrical systems, machinery, and equipment across various industries. According to the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET), the UK's transition to renewable energy and smart technologies is driving increased demand for electrical engineers. As of the fourth quarter of 2023, approximately 50,100 electrical engineers were employed in the UK, up from 49,600 in the previous quarter. With initiatives like the Green Industrial Revolution, electrical engineering offers exciting prospects for those passionate about sustainability and innovation. The average salary for an electrical engineer in the UK varies by source and experience level, with one source citing an average salary of £39,000.

4. Data Scientist:

The proliferation of data is transforming many professions, leading to a surge in demand for data scientists who can help organisations make sense of it. Businesses increasingly rely on big data for insights and decision-making, with specialists in this field being highly sought after across various sectors, from government departments to tech startups. According to a Research Briefing on data science skills in the UK workforce, a 2023 survey by the World Economic Forum found that 'AI and Machine Learning Specialists' and 'Data Analysts and Scientists' are among the top 10 fastest-growing job roles expected between 2023 and 2027. Currently, the average salary for a data scientist in the UK is around £53,000 per year.

5. Doctor:

The UK's healthcare sector remains a cornerstone of the economy, with doctors playing a pivotal role in delivering essential services. According to the British Medical Association (BMA), the NHS employs over 155,000 doctors, offering stable employment and opportunities for career advancement. However, in England, the number of patients per doctor at GP practices was 1,700 in October 2022. With such high demand, the average salary for a doctor working in the UK is approximately £76,000. NHS basic pay starts at £29,000 for a newly qualified doctor and goes up to £114,000 for an experienced consultant.

6. Financial Analyst:

The finance sector is a significant contributor to the GDP, and financial analysts are instrumental in driving investment and economic growth. Boasting a massive 2.5 million people employed across the UK – with over 1.1 million in financial services (FS) and more than 1.3 million in related professional services – the industry produced £278bn of economic output, 12% of the entire UK’s economic output, and £100bn in tax revenue, based on the annual review of UK financial services 2023. Based on these statistics, it comes as no surprise the average annual salary for a Financial Analyst is £43,000.

7. Environmental Engineer:

As the UK strives to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, environmental engineers play a crucial role in implementing sustainable solutions. According to the Environment Agency, the UK's environmental sector generates over £68 billion in turnover annually, offering diverse career opportunities in areas such as waste management, renewable energy, and pollution control. Based on LinkedIn’s Global Green Skills Report 2023, between February 2022 and February 2023, job postings requiring at least one green skill have grown by a median of 15.2%, with an average environmental engineer’s salary being around £34,000.

8. Civil Engineer:

Infrastructure projects are crucial to the UK's economy, and civil engineers are essential in designing and constructing these projects. The Royal Academy of Engineering forecasts that the UK's infrastructure investment will reach £600 billion by 2050, creating numerous job opportunities for civil engineers. Currently, the average salary for a civil engineer is approximately £36,000.

9. Digital Marketing Specialist:

The digital marketing industry is experiencing rapid growth, driven by the shift to online channels and e-commerce. According to the UK Advertising Exports Report 2021, digital advertising exports reached £1.5 billion in 2020, underscoring the sector's importance and the demand for skilled digital marketers.2024 data from Glassdoor puts a digital marketing specialist’s median salary at £42,000 making it another attractive option for 20-somethings looking to grow in their career.

10. Aerospace Engineer:

Aerospace engineers design, test, build, and maintain airplanes, spacecraft, and satellites. The UK's aerospace sector is renowned for its innovation and significant contribution to global aviation. According to Aerospace UK, the sector employs over 100,000 people, generates £35 billion in annual revenue, and offers an average base salary of £39,000. This sector provides exciting career opportunities in aerospace engineering and related fields.


Your twenties are a critical period for shaping your career path, and engineering and technology stand out as compelling choices supported by robust statistics and market trends. Whether you are drawn to software development, infrastructure design, renewable energy, or data analytics, engineering offers a rewarding and future-proof career with ample opportunities for growth and advancement in the UK job market. Engineering and technology fields are integral to many aspects of modern life, driving innovation and economic growth.

Redline director Adam Walker commented:

"It's interesting to see the range of jobs that emerge as long-term career options for young workers, and many involve the creation of technology. A software engineer has one of the most in-demand and lucrative careers in the world, with the rapid expansion of the profession as software continues to touch our everyday lives. In addition to software engineering, other branches of engineering such as electronics, mechanical, electrical, and automotive/aerospace also offer stable employment prospects and the satisfaction of solving complex technical challenges”

Redline changes lives every day, building world-class teams for technology companies. Redline Group continues to be one of the UK’s most trusted Electronics and high-technology recruitment specialists for professional contract, permanent and executive positions. With four decades of knowledge-led recruitment, Redline is perfectly positioned to offer advice about future-proofing your contract, permanent, and interim needs.

For more information on Redline’s current Engineering jobs, please contact us on 01582 450054 or email


Fill out the form below to let us know about a vacancy you would like us to advertise for you.

Click here


Register your details to access the latest vacancies, create job alerts and much more.