Perhaps more than any other industry in the world today, the automotive industry is changing. As electric cars take over the roads, automated cars become more and more common, and governments take stands against fossil fuels and the cars that use them, further change is coming. In the next 10 years, the industry will likely be unrecognizable, and the people recruiting for it will have to adapt.
Here, we look at expected changes to the automotive industry by 2030 and how they will affect global workforce trends, as well as talent acquisition strategies you can use to stay ahead of the game.
Looking Toward 2030: The Top 5 Current Global Recruitment and Workforce Trends, the Challenges They Pose to the Automotive Industry, and What You Can Do to Avoid Them
Countries around the world have set targets for sweeping changes to the way that automobiles are bought and used, with many setting targets that will utterly change the way we think about automobiles by 2030 or 2035.
As a result, the industry is shifting to meet changing demands, and recruiters have to find ways to incorporate new realities into their systems.
With the switch from fossil fuels to electric, as well as the growth of self-driving systems, the automotive industry already requires higher-level digital-based skillsets. According to Deloitte, 67% of automotive executives surveyed described digital skills as a priority for the future. These can be found either through recruitment, reskilling, or upskilling, but the biggest change will come at the hiring level with incoming recruits.
Talent acquisition strategies will have to focus more and more on finding candidates with the right skills now as well as going forward. This means more testing of digital engineering competencies throughout the hiring process, and more background checks focused on specific educational accomplishments.
On the flip side, technology is also expected to provide more ways for companies and job applicants to interact, from providing new platforms for job searches (like social media) to automating elements of the recruitment process to allow recruiters to search through thousands of applicants in a fraction of the time. However, all this also requires knowledge and awareness on the recruiter’s side with a greater array of industry tools.
Bringing in talent from varied or younger groups can drastically improve the levels of creativity, customer orientation, and overall performance.
With Gen Z expected to make up 58% of the workforce by 2030, a more diverse workforce will seriously benefit companies in the way they explore new markets both at the manufacturing level as supply chains diversify and at the consumer end.
Employers can seek younger applicants by making use of new recruitment platforms such as social media. Having recruiters in your organization or on your side who can navigate this expanding array of platforms, and knowing when to incorporate more traditional applicant streams in new countries can be essential.
By investing in younger workers in internship programs, not only do they benefit from the mentorship of established team members, but working with these learners will help to expand their perspectives too.
In general, as technology becomes increasingly involved in this industry, it poses both a challenge and an opportunity to bring in these younger digital creatives. Companies can make the most of this opportunity by broadening their search to include social media and less traditional platforms in developing markets.
As with most industries, the COVID-19 pandemic led to an abrupt shift in the use and place of flexible work patterns. From offering remote working options to employees at home or overseas to boosting employee satisfaction through a focus on work-life balance, there are several ways that automotive companies can not only survive the change but thrive in this new environment.
According to a poll by Ford, 70% of United States automotive industry workers surveyed already said they would prefer a hybrid work model going forward. This will necessarily require companies to adapt the benefits packages they offer as part of job descriptions if they want to remain appealing.
Thanks to rising automation and fears around future-proofing vulnerable positions, manufacturing careers are also seen as less secure. However, with the right marketing, companies can demonstrate the way they integrate technology rather than use it as a replacement.
Technology can be promoted as a key benefit here, with remote work or hybrid work options offering the flexibility applicants are looking for.
With an increasingly fractured and uncertain global landscape, supply chain security is becoming a key concern for the automotive industry which relies so heavily on material sourcing and skilled labor.
Today, supply chain bottlenecks, rising wages, and increasingly ethics-oriented company images mean that traditional manufacturing hubs like China are being replaced fast.
Nearshoring is being presented as a way for companies to take advantage of lower-cost labor in new locations. For example, US automotive industry companies are increasingly turning to Mexico and Latin America for manufacturing, while other companies continuing to look towards Asia are moving to Vietnam. Automotive industry giant Mitsubishi began to transfer their manufacturing there as far back as 2018.
In all of these locations, companies are looking more and more toward hiring local talent, rather than applying the old method of transferring out existing employees to new countries on so-called expat contracts. Local talent brings local expertise, and companies specifically focusing on diversity will have an advantage in a greater range of markets.
However, this means ensuring you have office space overseas or fully integrate working from home or a hybrid model. The right work environment is key to staying focused at work, a job made much harder internationally.
This change also means more focus on the best use of local talent pools, requiring specialized local knowledge, but also opening the company to greater employee diversity at a potentially lower cost.
Partially as a combination of all the above, we see a general shift among automotive industry companies in the way they represent themselves to potential hires. Chiefly, these companies are focusing on the way they stand out from the crowd to make the most of an increasingly smaller and more specialized talent pool, and how they are going to be seen in relation to green energy targets for 2030 and 2050.
Automotive industry parts supplier Schaeffler Group made their company’s ecological responsibility and diversity key aspects of their rebranding campaign in 2022 for example.
During the recruitment process, this means bringing in all the advice of experts on attracting diversity, offering flexible and appealing benefits packages, and seeking new workers on their grounds instead of waiting for them to apply.
Digital key competencies in the automotive industry means that companies are now faced with a new set of competitors. Companies have to do more to attract software engineers, designers, and UX specialists to jobs that have never been considered by these professionals before.
Here, companies can think more about the image that they are presenting to potential employees. Whether that is advertising in new automotive industry online spaces or investing in employer branding and stronger connections with schools or educational programs catering to those needs. Offering attractive internships could be a great way to start this change and invest long-term. To attract more senior applicants, demonstrating the value of a new challenge and the positive impact of modern automotive projects can also work well.
How Employer of Record Services Can Streamline Your Recruitment Process
An Employer of Record (EOR) is a third-party provider that hires, manages, and assures compliant employment for workers on your behalf. Worldwide EORs like INS Global can give you access to cost-effective recruitment and HR in over 100 countries, without the need for a local company structure.
An EOR can also handle as much or as little of the recruitment process as you like, such as searching local job boards, or running checks to ensure candidate experience.
A professional services provider can utilize specialist local automotive industry knowledge and access to resources to expand your potential talent pool in key target markets. All this can be done without the need for an expanded or overburdened in-house HR department.
EOR services then help you hire your chosen candidates on your behalf wherever your global expansion strategy requires. Without the need for a local company structure to manage these HR functions, you are saving on both time and overhead costs.