Autocar’s Drivers of Change initiative is back for 2022.
Held in partnership with executive search specialists Ennis and Co, the competition aims to attract the brightest and best talents to submit their ideas on how to transform the automotive industry in key new areas.
Now in its third year, the competition has never been more relevant as the industry faces a skills shortage that is pervasive across all sectors. Data from Ennis and Co’s latest report, the Skills Evolution Roadmap 2025, has shown that the automotive sector will be facing a global shortage of 2.3 million skilled workers by 2025 and 4.3 million by 2030, demonstrating that recruiting fresh talent and ideas will become one of the key challenges in future.
For this year, the categories have been refreshed and revised to reflect the changing automotive landscape but the aim remains the same: to identify and promote the best talent across three key areas, Diversity and Inclusion, Digital, and Retail, with a view to giving entrants the right exposure in getting their ideas to market.
The Diversity and Inclusion award is new for 2022, as the automotive industry moves to become a more appealing career prospect for everyone in society. Enter this category if you’ve moved the game on with a new inclusive system or policy and can demonstrate the impact of it, be that within a small business or a multinational entity.
The Digital and Retail categories are both retained. Digital is for innovations that advance the digital space to the benefit of customers, retailers, manufacturers, start-ups or any other relevant party. Retail is for bright ideas that improve customer service or business practices in the retail space.
Last year’s winners included a new way to measure aquaplaning on cars and vans to help reduce tyre development costs, as well as a portable battery that could be used to recharge electric vehicles as a crucial back up.
The initiative is open to anyone who can make a difference in any of the three categories. Prior experience isn’t required – the range of entrants spans from those starting out in their career to those with more experience, be that within the automotive world or outside of it. The key is to have an idea or be delivering a plan that could challenge the status quo.
Steve Cropley, Autocar’s editor-in-chief, said: “I continue to be amazed by the automotive industry and how it is constantly evolving, and the key to that is the amazing people who work within it. It attracts the very brightest minds and we feel it is part of our duty here at Autocar to help find and nurture the next generation of talented thinkers.
“The beauty of Drivers of Change is that it’s open to all. You might be fresh out of university or school, or twenty years into a successful career – the remit is wide and there is no upper age limit. We want to hear from people who are problem solvers.”
The winner in each of the three Drivers of Change categories will be invited to the prestigious annual dinner for the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), where they will have the opportunity to discuss their ideas live on stage.
Drivers of Change is sponsored by: McLaren Automotive, Peugeot, Toyota, TrustFord and Volkswagen.
Ennis & Co founder Lynda Ennis said: “Drivers of Change showcases the brightest and best individuals who are enabling the automotive and mobility revolution. The demand for intelligent, creative and motivated people has never been greater as companies compete to attract the individuals needed to deliver their ambitious plans.
“It is exciting to read the applications for Drivers of Change, knowing that these are the people who will drive the future, and it may well be you! I encourage you to apply and give yourself the best opportunity to succeed in this fantastic industry.”
Participants must be aged 18 or over to enter. If you have a brilliant idea, please send it to firstname.lastname@example.org. Those wishing to enter should submit a CV and 500-word statement detailing their idea. A video and/or presentation is also permitted. The closing date for entries is 23 September 2022.
The winners from each category will be invited to attend the annual SMMT dinner in November 2022.