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The hiring rate in the Indian automobile industry is likely to slow down to 2-2.5 per cent year-on-year against the historical 3 to 3.5 per cent growth due to the advent of new technologies and increased automation, according to a study. According to 'Future of jobs in India: A 2022 perspective' by Ficci-Nasscom and EY, the emergence of new generation technologies is demanding a new set of skills from the auto workforce. The report said employment in the automotive sector is likely to reach 14.3 million in 2022 and 60-65 per cent of the jobs would require new skill sets. The sector provided direct employment to 12.8 million people as on FY 2017, it added. "The automotive sector would continue to hire at a rate of 2 per cent to 2.5 per cent year-on-year against a historical growth rate of 3 per cent to 3.5 per cent to reach 14.3 million in 2022," the report said. The auto industry has been one of the top robot-buying industries for years, and this trend is expected to continue, it said. Robots have enabled almost 70 to 100 per cent automation in weld shops, press shops, cast shops and paint shops and are further penetrating into assembly operations to enable a higher degree of automation and lower costs for the manufacturer. "With robotics being increasingly adopted in the sector, repetitive jobs roles such as painting and welding are being threatened.
At the same time, job roles in robotics programming and maintenance will be more in demand," it said. EY Partner - People and Organisation Advisory Services, Anurag Malik said, "The Indian automotive industry is likely to witness an increased demand for skilled labour in the coming years, as the economic environment improves and investments are made as part of the 'Make in India' initiative." "Now, with the advent of new generation technologies, the industry needs to quickly come together and create collaborative learning ecosystems and develop workforce re-training programs across organisation levels to be future ready for the new job roles," he added. As per the report, India's automation has made inroads in the domestic automotive industry. At the plant level, automation at most original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) remains at 30 per cent while in the body shop it is beyond 95 per cent. "Auto companies are increasingly deploying smart robots with artificial intelligence capabilities that are able to adapt, communicate and interact with each other and with humans," it said. In the next five years, due to the introduction of connected cars, big data, and cloud computing, new skill sets will be required in design, operation as well as other elements of the auto value chain, the report highlighted. "Some of the potential new job roles in the automotive sector include automobile analytics engineer, 3D printing technician, machine learning-based vehicle cybersecurity expert and sustainability integration expert," it added.