The European auto industry is going through an unprecedented transformation because of the short-term impact of the COVID crisis, as well as the long-term shift towards clean and digital mobility, and the goal of achieving carbon neutrality by 2050. This transition is already significantly impacting the lives of the more than 14.6 million Europeans currently employed in the automotive value chain. The whole European automotive ecosystem, from small SMEs to big OEMs and from suppliers, dealers, up to very last maintenance and repair workshops, is facing disruption.
The transition and foreseen structural change crucially impact the workforce with numbers of jobs being endangered in the short to medium-term, whereas the entire automotive chain struggles to attract and recruit qualified people for new and emerging jobs coming. To remain competitive and to meet their economic and social responsibilities, the industry needs to invest significantly in the re/upskilling of its workforce.
A recovery strategy to implement an up/reskilling framework maximising industry competitiveness, job retention and new job opportunities paving the way to a skills partnership for the automotive ecosystem. It presents a roadmap towards skills transformation as well as contributes to post-COVID recovery. It further broadens the outcomes of DRIVES (Blueprint project) which provides key inputs to the future work of the skills partnership.
The partnership also builds on inclusivity and openness for all other existing or future stakeholders, initiatives or projects (e.g. ALBATTS Blueprint project) to jointly cooperate under one European umbrella. The ambition of the partnership is to enable up-/re-skilling of 5% of workforce each year to tackle the industrial transition in the automotive ecosystem.
In order to reach this target, the partners jointly commit to:
- establish a skills partnership for the automotive ecosystem;
- update intelligence about the ecosystem and its development that leads to continuous skills needs updates and provides guidance to education providers;
- set-up an EU-wide framework for skills and job roles building on the DRIVES outcomes; share experience and best practices;
- provide financial or non-financial contribution (depending on the nature of the entities) to the trainings realised under the Framework, depending on the financial schemes valid for individual projects in respective regions or Member States.
Trainings would be implemented with a focus on analysing and defining the skills needs, where industry is committed to share its perspective and strategy; streamlining the workforce planning, including skills employee assessment, where industry and regional/national authorities will cooperate together; providing relevant trainings and education courses for all kinds of trainings and levels of education; and assessing the outcomes of the trainings to improve quality of the system as a joint exercise of all stakeholders involved.
The partnership will ensure sustainable and systematic sectoral cooperation based on commitment of all stakeholders involved; systematic EU-wide recognition of skills and knowledge and EU-wide mutually accepted definitions of skills and job-roles. Implementation would start in at least 5 pilot regions in 2021. The ambition to upskill 5% of the workforce each year would result in 700.000 employees to be upskilled and reskilled along the automotive ecosystem in coming years. Considering this ambition and provided that the reskilling investment per employee on average €10.000 is expected, this represents an overall commitment from the private and public authorities around €7bn to be invested.
The Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) would include: number of involved stakeholders and coverage of the ecosystem; coverage of countries and regions; stakeholders coverage of involvement in sectoral drivers of change, such as carbon-neutral mobility, electrification, new power trains, green mobility, batteries, power cells, IT applications etc.
Please find the full statement on the Skills Partnership for the Automotive Ecosystem and Pact for Skills Charter below.