"Strategic Human Resource Management and the Evolution of the Technical Automotive Workforce"

Presentations from February 12, 2013 Summit

The environment is changing for technical workforce development in the automotive industry. Vehicle electrification along with innovative technologies for navigation, communication, entertainment, and advanced safety systems have become increasingly vital components of modern vehicle engineering. Human resources professionals and hiring managers within the automotive industry are challenged to identify , recruit and develop the next generation of the automotive engineering and technical professional workforce. These individuals will require special skills that align with the needs of this continuously evolving, technology-driven automotive industry. This event was designed to facilitate information sharing and dialogue among automotive HR professionals and technical managers, educators, government, and economic development agencies

What are the strengths and weaknesses of the automotive workforce as it stands today?
What skills do they have and what competencies do they possess? How can industry and academia join together to ensure that the students leave school with the skills that they need to succeed in the industry? Assessment of the American workforce-community compared to workforce-communities overseas.
Tiffani Orange, Manager, US Recruiting Strategy & Programs, Ford Motor Company

Which positions are most difficult to recruit for?
Why is it so difficult to find qualified individuals who possess the necessary skills for a particular position in the automotive industry? Which positions have the highest demand for skilled workers? How many job openings are there in comparison with the number of qualified candidates? Where are the "gaps" in talent within the automotive industry?
Sean Vanderelzen, Director, Talent Acquisition and Early Career Development, General Motors

The 'right kind of people'
Beyond specific qualifications and skills in their field of expertise, what kinds of qualities and characteristics do the ideal candidates have? What ideals/work ethic should educators be encouraging among their students? What role does corporate culture play in recruiting strategies? What kind of work environment is common within the automotive sector and how do employees respond to that?
Kimberly L Topping, Director, Industrial Group Human Resources, Chrysler Group LLC

Automotive Engineer Workforce - Current State and Future Outlook
What is the current state of the automotive engineer workforce: open positions, most sought after skill-sets, hiring patterns, and salaries? As for training and development, what topics and technologies are the most popular among current automotive engineers and what do we know about these learners? What future trends are we tracking and how should we be preparing?
Alan R. Lecz, Director, Employer Strategies, Workforce Intelligence Network (WIN) and J. Kevin Perry, Global Manager, Professional Development and Martha Schanno, Recruitment Sales Manager, SAE International

How to save the experience and expertise from the retiring 'baby-boomers'?
The untapped resource is the life experience of the individual professional. Or, on the other hand, why are automotive OEMs sometimes more inclined to hire a less experienced individual versus a highly experienced one? What are the advantages/disadvantages, typically, between hiring a Gen Y or Gen X job candidate? What are their working styles and how do they fit in with the ideal skill requirements of professionals of the automotive sector? What corporate training/professional development opportunities are offered in-house for employees in the automotive industry?
Donna Dorsey, Vice President, Human Resources, Business Operations, Navistar

Retaining the Young Engineer
Graduation rates are low for engineering students and automotive industry employers often find difficulty in retaining young engineers once they are hired (See New York Times Article: Why Students Leave The Engineering Track.) How can this issue be resolved?
David Benson, Assistant Professor, Mechanical Engineering, Kettering University, Consultant for ENGAGE

Panel Discussion Involving OEMs and Academia - Technology Skills for the Automotive Sector Workforce
With the increasing influence of simulation software, computers, etc. in engineering education, how much tech knowledge do the professors need to effectively teach via these tools? How should professors integrate technology into the curriculum? And what credentials do candidates need when entering the automotive industry workforce in engineering and product development and manufacturing technician roles? Also, from an industry perspective, what opportunities for training are available to new hires and longer term employees requiring additional information technology-based training?
Speakers - Ken Butts, Executive Engineer, Toyota Technical Center; Jim Freudenberg, Director, Automotive Engineering, and Professor, University of Michigan; Tom Kenney, Chair, SAE ABET Relations Committee; Gene Liao, Professor, Wayne State University
Panel Moderator - Kristin Dziczek, Center for Automotive Research (CAR&)