The coronavirus pandemic has transformed nearly every aspect of our lives and it has also impacted how automakers develop future models.
While vehicle development has changed considerably over the years, people have largely been required to go to the office to get their work done. The pandemic made that impossible and forced engineers to work remotely.
Thankfully this hasn’t hampered development as GM’s Vice President of Electric and Autonomous Vehicles used a press conference to reveal two programs have been “pulled ahead,” despite the change. Ken Morris also said the switch to remote working has been relatively smooth and they now have the confidence to allow more people to work from home in the future.
That brings us to the announcement that GM will hire 3,000 new employees, through the first quarter of 2021, to help support their upcoming electric and autonomous vehicles launches. Many of these jobs will allow people to work remotely, and this means engineers and developers from California could work for GM without having to move to Michigan.
Among the thousands of positions are openings for engineers who specialize in controls, infotainment software and electrical systems. The company is also looking for developers who specialize in Android, iOS, Java and other platforms.
Speaking of the latter, the company noted “software expertise is core to GM’s Vehicle Intelligence Platform, which brings more electrical bandwidth and the capability to support new active safety, infotainment, connectivity and the Super Cruise driver assistance feature, as well as over-the-air updates.”
Besides announcing the hiring spree, Morris used the press conference to say the company sees an “inflection point” for electric vehicles in the middle of this decade. When we reach that point, GM believes EV adoption will increase significantly. As a result, the company is preparing for this shift as Morris noted it would be difficult to catch up if they miss it.
Morris also said GM is “looking forward” to working with the Biden administration as the 77 year old is set to become the 46th president of the United States. This shouldn’t be too surprising as the administration should be more eco-friendly and could push for greater tax incentives for electric vehicles.
Last but not least, Morris hinted we can expect more news on November 19th. There’s no word on specifics, but GM CEO Mary Barra will be participating in the Barclays Global Automotive Conference on that day and the company will likely make some sort of product announcement.