Workers in the Unite union at defence electronics company Selex Galileo have begun a national ballot for industrial action over pay.
This covers sites across Britain including Edinburgh, Luton, Basildon and Southampton.
The company has offered a below-inflation pay rise of 2.5 percent, which equates to an annual increase of £750.
“This is a company who last year made a profit of £24,900 for every person they employ,” said Unite regional officer Gillian McKay. “The company can clearly afford to pay substantially more.”
The result will be released on Monday of next week.
If there is no improved offer, strikes are likely to start in early December.