Article: India's Electric Vehicle sector in 2024: Analysing govt policies, role of HR, AI & talent gap

Talent Management

India's Electric Vehicle sector in 2024: Analysing govt policies, role of HR, AI & talent gap

Industry experts, speaking exclusively with People Matters, emphasised HR's role in attracting talent to the Electric Vehicle (EV) sector, suggesting collaboration with educational institutions and recruitment efforts tailored to emphasise sustainability and innovation.
India's Electric Vehicle sector in 2024: Analysing govt policies, role of HR, AI & talent gap

India has committed to reducing the carbon intensity of its economy by less than 45% by the end of the decade, achieving 50% cumulative electric power installed by 2030 from renewables, and ultimately reaching net-zero carbon emissions by 2070. In line with these objectives, the electric vehicle (EV) sector in India is experiencing a profound transformation, driven by escalating environmental concerns and the urgent need to mitigate carbon emissions. 

The market for electric vehicles in India has witnessed remarkable growth, with its valuation soaring to $22.88 billion in 2023, and further expansion anticipated from 2024 to 2030. Highlighting this surge, data reveals that 1.5 million EVs were sold in India in 2023, representing a 50% increase from 2021. 

Notably, the share of EVs in India's total auto sales surged from 1.75% in 2021 to 6.38% in 2023. A robust growth was also observed in the two-wheeler (2W) segment, which experienced a 37% increase, while three-wheelers (3W) saw an even more impressive rise of 66%. 

In September 2023, the country boasted over 2.7 million registered EVs. Concurrently, the 4W market witnessed sales of 4–5 million units in the same year, maintaining a steady compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of approximately 2% between 2018 and 2023. 

Projections indicate a promising trajectory for the Indian EV market, with estimates suggesting its potential to reach $7.09 billion by 2025. Furthermore, industry forecasts anticipate a significant milestone for the domestic EV market, with expectations set for achieving 10 million annual sales by 2030.

What is driving Electric Vehicle skill development? 

The development so far has been made possible due to government policies aimed at promoting skill development and workforce readiness in the Electric Vehicle sector. Flagship programs like the Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of (Hybrid and) Electric vehicles (FAME) initiatives offer substantial incentives, making EVs more appealing and accessible. 

Nimish Trivedi, CEO & Co-founder of Evera, highlighted, "These measures, combined with flagship programs like Digital India and Make in India, position India as a global hub for EV innovation."

Additionally, the government's commitment to electric vehicle (EV) skill development is evident in policies such as the Skill India Digital platform and the introduction of 16 new-age trades. To amplify their impact, targeted initiatives for technical training are essential.

Rohet Ramesh, Director at Layam Group, suggested, "The government should form partnerships with technical institutions and industry stakeholders to develop specialised curriculum modules covering EV technology intricacies. Aligning training standards with global benchmarks will ensure a workforce that can compete on the global stage."

This is essential to ensure that the Indian EV industry can design, develop, and manufacture world-class products emphasised Amit Lakhotia, Founder & CEO of Park+ and added, “Promoting certification programs, apprenticeships, and continuous education for automotive technicians and engineers can significantly contribute to nurturing a skilled workforce tailored to the specific demands of the EV industry.” 

Bridging industry needs: EV company-academic partnerships

The role of education in fostering individual development and societal progress cannot be overstated. From foundational knowledge to specialised skills, education equips individuals with the tools and capabilities necessary to navigate the complexities of the modern world. While initiatives for skill enhancement often occur within the workplace, it is the educational institutions that form the bedrock of cognitive development. 

These institutions serve as the crucible where minds are shaped, ideas are nurtured, and lifelong learning begins. In this context, the symbiotic relationship between education and skill development lays the foundation for personal growth, professional success, and societal advancement. Therefore, for graduates to have industry relevant skills, a formal EV company-academic partnerships for joint research should be forged along with internships, suggested Director at Layam Group. 

“Institutions can boost hands-on training with industry visits, workshops, and projects in collaboration with manufacturers while Guest lectures by industry experts can offer insights into technological advancements. It may also be noted that by introducing industry-recognised certification programs and maintaining a feedback mechanism with industry representatives in curriculum design, educational institutions can ensure program relevance,” he added. 

By forging collaborative ties with key players in the EV sector, educational institutions can provide graduates with direct pathways to employment opportunities that align closely with industry needs. This approach not only enhances graduates' employability but also bolsters the sector's overall contribution by supplying it with a steady stream of qualified and industry-ready professionals. Through targeted partnerships and strategic alignment of skills training programs, graduates can seamlessly transition into roles that drive innovation and propel the EV industry forward.

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Attracting talent to the EV Sector

In the transition from academia to the professional world, Human Resources assumes a critical role, acting as the linchpin that connects theoretical learning with practical application. Beyond mere recruitment and administrative functions, HR undertakes the crucial task of fostering a skilled workforce capable of adapting to the ever-changing demands of the industry.

Through meticulously crafted training and development programs, ongoing initiatives for upskilling and reskilling, and the facilitation of progressive career pathways, HR emerges as the cornerstone for nurturing talent and fostering organisational excellence. By nurturing individuals and guiding their professional growth, HR not only drives personal success but also propels the entire industry towards a future defined by innovation and sustainable progress.

Echoing these sentiments, the CEO and Co-founder of Evera emphasised, "The focus should be on sustainable development and its transformative impact, making the EV industry more appealing to new talent." To attract individuals to the Electric Vehicle (EV) sector, HR professionals can collaborate with educational institutions, tailor recruitment efforts to highlight sustainability and innovation, and establish internship programs to provide practical experience.

Highlighting the importance of career advancement and continuous learning opportunities, as well as showcasing technological advancements within the industry, is crucial. Offering flexible work arrangements, competitive compensation packages, and forging partnerships within the industry all contribute to attracting skilled professionals.

"Harnessing targeted initiatives such as industry-specific webinars, partnering with educational institutions for specialised courses, and providing competitive training programs can significantly enhance talent acquisition efforts," he added. Furthermore, roles in research and development, product design, chemical engineering, and techno-managerial positions are particularly sought after. Therefore, discussions around sustainability and environmental impact serve as key conversation starters between employers and potential employees.

"To entice top talent, employers must foster a positive work environment, offer competitive compensation, provide flexible working hours, and outline clear paths for growth, ensuring the attraction and retention of exceptional individuals from diverse business sectors," noted Amit Lakhotia, Founder & CEO of Park+.

AI as a solution to talent shortages

In today's discourse on the workplace and talent, the prominence of Artificial Intelligence (AI) is undeniable. Widely viewed as a potential substitute for human labour, AI has become an integral part of discussions surrounding workforce dynamics. However, in industries grappling with significant talent shortages, AI is increasingly perceived as more of a complement than a replacement. Instead of posing a threat to human employment, AI is emerging as a valuable ally in addressing the persistent gap in skilled professionals.

For instance, AI addresses talent scarcity in the EV industry, enhancing aspects from battery management to safety. The Battery Monitoring System (BMS) uses AI and Machine Learning (ML) for efficient energy use and prolonged battery life. Integrating Advanced Driver-Assistance Systems (ADAS) pre-empts accidents, enhancing safety. 

“AI and ML contribute to collective infrastructure development and offer insights for future planning. The extensive use of AI in the EV sector raises privacy concerns, necessitating ethical use to prevent biases. Balancing benefits and costs for industry sustainability is crucial in implementing costly AI technologies. Addressing privacy, bias, regulatory, and cost considerations is important for seamless AI integration in the rapidly evolving EV industry,” stressed the Director Layam Group.

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Topics: Talent Management, #IndustryInsights, #HRTech, #HRCommunity

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