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Bridging the Skill and Talent Gap in the Automotive Industry

  • Publish Date: Posted about 1 year ago
  • Author:by John Martin

​Let’s face it.

Two insurmountable HR challenges are devastating every technical industry in the world.

  1. The digital and technology skill shortages

  2. A lack of talent supply versus demand

Time and time again, these gaps have already made business development incredibly difficult, slowing the progress of industry growth.

This does not bode well for the future.

The threat of skill and talent gaps to the automotive industry

Any firm facing skill and talent gaps across their organisation is likely to experience reduced productivity and employee burnout. Why?

Inevitably, too much pressure is placed on the shoulders of their current workers, who are unable to do their jobs effectively without the right team members to support them. Over time, this leads to a damaged employer brand.

Therefore, gaining a consistent source of qualified employees proves critical to the future of the automotive industry.

Case study: The Electric Vehicle Market

Over the last year, the Electric Vehicle’s high-potential market has encountered a harrowing challenge when trying to source qualified employees.

“We are accelerating head-first into an industry-wide skills gap.” - MotorTrader

It seems that the market is on the edge of a stall point in consumer adoption. Already, drivers are expressing concerns about their unwillingness to purchase electric cars without a guarantee of consistent access to charging points.

Analysis from the IMI suggests that, in the UK alone, 90,000 automotive technicians will be “required to provide sufficient workforce to service the volume of zero-emissions vehicles” predicted to be on UK roads by 2030.

This workforce will need to be made up of highly qualified and proficient individuals, preferably with a background in electricity, engineering, or mechanics. As it stands, these roles are already in short supply across multiple markets.

(Source: Automotive Management)

How to bridge the skill and talent gap in the automotive industry

For the past few years, businesses in our sector have been forced to join the war for talent by continuously raising salary rates. While temporarily effective, it’s not a sustainable approach.

Going forward, organisations need to focus on securing long-term survivability. How? By increasing the availability of talent to fill specialist roles in our field.

With a recent prediction that the automotive skill gap will become a crisis by 2026, this leaves us with just four short years to address a growing issue.

Step 1. Sponsor education

In the coming years, start partnering with universities and colleges to provide grant scholarships for candidates to study relevant courses. By reducing the risk of debt, more workers might be willing to pursue a specific degree or qualification your company desperately needs.

Step 2. Create entry-level positions

Similarly, leaders should open more entry-level positions to allow non-experienced candidates to “learn on the job”. This way, you can train workers in the exact skills your organisation lacks and start to develop a strong employee onboarding system that promotes career growth.

Step 3. Provide training schemes

Next, start encouraging the professional development of each one of your employees. Why? Because it will create new opportunities for individuals. Soon, you’ll have built a culture of self-learning, engaging workers and giving them clear goals to work toward.

Step 4. Offer coaching & mentoring

When team members want to take their career to the next step, this benefits both you and them. Implement mentorships in your company to encourage skill development and help talent climb from entry-level positions into advanced specialist roles.

Step 5. Reskill and upskill employees

No matter what, always look internally to calculate how you can close skill gaps and talent shortages. Provide eager employees with the chance to gain a promotion or move to another role, ensuring you have a flexible workforce that can cover each other’s weaknesses.

Step 6. Participate in industry conversations

Regardless of your training approach, it’s every leader’s responsibility to encourage candidates from other industries to make the move into our field. Where possible, participate in discussions (such as trade shows) to get your name out there and increase job applications.

Step 7. Create promotional content

Use marketing to your advantage. Educate prospective talent on the benefits of working with you, and be sure to mention the training and development opportunities you have in place. This way, you can expand your network of qualified talent.

Step 8. Recruit diversely and inclusively

To truly fix skill and talent gaps, recruit widely and diversely by eradicating the chance of discrimination. When you build a team from employees with a wide range of experiences, you construct an inclusive environment that encourages creativity and innovation.

Work with Xcede

Xcede works with top-tier technology and engineering candidates across the world to service the automotive sector globally.

Partnering with world-leading organisations, we take pride in supporting the technological evolutions and industrial revolutions happening across the world.

Our dedication to finding experienced and diverse candidates with the right qualifications allows businesses to foster growth and continue scaling.

Contact us today to get started.