What do members think of the IET?

5 February 2013
IET Communications team
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Group members in shirts

Results of the 2012 Membership Survey.

The IET’s chief executive, Nigel Fine, said in a recent Council meeting that membership engagement was one of the top issues ‘keeping him awake at night’.

In a rapidly changing professional environment, the IET must ensure that it continues to be relevant and provide value to its members.

One of the methods the Institution uses to track this is its annual Membership Survey, which gives members the opportunity to say how they feel about the IET.

The 2012 survey was held in October, with a total of 926 members taking part.

The key findings are described below. The full set of results can be reviewed in this report (member access only).


Key finding: The IET is viewed as professional and respected, and members provide extremely valuable PR

Members were asked to what extent 10 words described their perceptions of the IET. ‘Professional’ and ‘respected’ received the highest scores.

The survey also revealed that 90% of members say positive things about the IET, with 72% of members recommending IET membership to others. 


Key finding: Very high satisfaction with interaction with staff

Members rated their satisfaction with IET staff very highly - at 4.4 out of 5, up from 4.1 out of 5 in 2011.


Key finding: The IET needs to show how membership helps engineers do their jobs and progress their careers

This had been identified as an area for improvement for the IET and the roll out of tailored membership packages for each career stage has been designed to address this.

‘Graduate Advantage’ and ‘Career Advantage’ have now been launched, ensuring that IET membership offers maximum value to graduates and those in the early stages of their careers. ‘Professional Advantage’ will be launched in 2013 to maintain the relevance of IET membership as engineers and technicians progress along the road to professional registration.

The IET is also working with engineering employers to promote the value of IET membership and professional registration, as well as the professionalism they stand for.


Key finding: The IET is well-established as a broad, inclusive institution, however for some people it does not offer enough technical depth

When members were asked to compare the IET to other engineering institutions they may belong to, the Institution was mostly seen as offering more or the same value. However, examination of the comments members provided showed that to improve on this, the IET should focus on providing more in-depth technical content across its sectors.


Key finding: Members would like the IET to focus on promoting the profession and providing them with even more access to knowledge resources

Two further themes emerged across several questions in the 2012 survey.

Firstly, it is vital that the IET continues to work hard at promoting the engineering profession. In 2012, the IET's media coverage increased by 32%. IET volunteers were interviewed on a range of subjects by media outlets including Al Jazeera, BBC News and Sky News. The IET has also set a benchmark to measure its engagement with government and key decision makers. This work has delivered increases in the member satisfaction ratings for media and government activities this year. The relevant teams will continue to promote the important contribution made to society by engineering and engineers.

Secondly, members would like more access to the IET’s knowledge resources. Plans are underway to deliver new ‘knowledge packages’ to members, including some free of charge access. The IET would also encourage all members to make use of the free resources already available via the IET’s Virtual Library. Events are also a key way for members to access more knowledge and the IET’s communities continue to grow the events programme each year.


Key finding: The IET's core activities are very highly regarded

Continuing the success of 2011, professional registration, professional development, degree accreditation and Engineering & Technology magazine all attracted high importance and satisfaction scores.


Next steps

The IET is committed to using the results of this survey to further improve the products and services it provides to its members. The key action points from the 2012 survey include:  

* Provide more technical content for members (e.g. upcoming knowledge packages)
* Research and develop new knowledge services for engineers in industry
* Work with employers to link membership with career and professional development
* Continue to promote activities in PR and public policy


More information

If you have any questions or comments (further feedback very welcome), please contact Sarah Jenkins, IET head of strategy and international development.